I don't have any latest reads to share with you today, but I really wanted to share something so here is my review that was originally posted at Goodreads for Lover Enshrined. Her Black Dagger Brotherhood series sort of launched me into romance with a renewed passion, so it's a fitting review to share. Plus, I love Phury ;)
Summary from Goodreads
Paperback, 534 pages
Published June 3rd 2008
As his first mate, the Chosen Cormia wants to win not only his body, but his heart for herself. She is drawn to the noble responsibility behind the emotionally scarred male. But Phury has never allowed himself to know pleasure or joy. As the war with the Lessening Society grows grim, tragedy looms over the Brotherhood's mansion, and Phury must decide between duty and love....
This year I've read Lover Awakened (my favourite BDB novel and most adored Brother) three times, so I thought I ought pay the same attention to Phury and gave his book a second re read. And I can't believe how much I'd forgotten! After a while, a lot of the books start to blend together. For instance, I'd forgotten that Qhuinn, Blay and JM get a lot of page time in this read. I absolutely loved re-visiting them in their younger days. And heck, it just got me more revved up for Lover at Last.
But more importantly, Phury was a delight to read. I have no idea what some readers have aganist him. His actions are certainly beyond frustrating and hurtful, and I understand that Z and the Brotherhood are at their wits end with him. His word isn't good for much at all, and everyone has come to the point where they are just fed with him and his crap. His using is hurting everyone around him. They don't know how to help. And the truth of the matter is, Phury is in a god awful place where no one can help. Because he's in a cycle of drug abuse: The more he uses, the more he gets shut down from those he loves because he's hurt them, so he blames himself, and the more he blames himself, the more he uses. It's so horribly sad. And there are spots I just wanted to shake him and say, stop for the love of God! But everyone had tried that. No one could help him, and Phury didn't know how to help himself. Until he tells the Wizard to shut the f*ck up. In that instance, when the Wizard changed from Ring-wraith to the harmless Wizard of Oz, I was laughed it up good. It was great to see Phury realizing that truth at long last. Cleaning up the garden in his mind with the help of Cormia laid aside all his past hurt and his pain at being the son that was neglected after Zsadist's abudction. The child that could no do right because he was unlucky enough to be a living reminder of what was lost, and who blamed himself. I don't envy Phury any of that. And I'm glad that Ward dreamed up Cormia. What a kick ass female she dreamed up for Phury. My favourite scene is cited below:
"Enough with the almosts and the nearlys and the are they or aren't theys. Enough with the twisted destiny they were caught in. Enough with doing what she had been told to do.
She wanted him. She was going to have him.
To hell with her sisters. He was hers.
Although only for tonight, an inner voice pointed out.
'Fuck you,' she said to the marble wall."
Enough said there I think, to make my point. She is totally kick ass--enough with being doing what she had been told to do? I'm so down with that. I love her. And Phury needs her strength I think, to make it through everything he needs to do--fight the allure of the red smoke, help bring change to the race's ways, to continue to be the male of worth he's always really been. And you know what I noticed in this read? That Phury and Zsadist are very much alike. I don't mean them being identical, or both having suffered. But that both of them are really very gentle on the inside. It makes wonder what they would have been like if they hadn't endured so much loneliness and abuse in one shape or another.
What I didn't like about this book? Lash. That whole storyline is just creepy. And that's ok. But I guess there's nothing else I didn't like about this book, and that's just fine with me. Although, I do wish something about the writing had been a bit more raw...or maybe I just lost the feel of it because there was a lot of back and forth between plot lines. But I feel like Phury's story should have made me cry more.
4 glittering stars