Ever since the death of his shellan, Tohrment has been a heartbroken shadow of the vampire leader he once was. Brought back to the Brotherhood by Lassiter, the fallen angel, he fights again with ruthless vengeance. He’s told he must learn to love another to free his former mate and son who are trapped in a cold, isolated netherworld, Tohr knows they are all doomed . . .
Except then a female with a shadowed history begins to get through to him. Against the backdrop of the raging war with the lessers, and with a new clan of vampires vying for the Blind King’s throne, Tohr struggles between the buried past, and a very hot, passion-filled future . . . but can his heart let go and set all of them free?
To be named was to be claimed, and it made her feel … reborn.
Lover Reborn is the 10th book of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. It is the story of Thor and No’One (later Autumn), and so many others. Let’s see the book through the characters!
Thor and Autumn
Thor’s emotional journey is heartbreaking. At first, his judgment is misted by mourning, self-pity, rage and panic, and finally it clears up by understanding and acceptance. He can’t see the wood for the trees, actually. After having some really deep, honest, and meaningful conversations with Autumn, he still doesn’t realize how much Autumn is able to calm him, how she understands him.
Autumn thinks at one point that she was defined by her tragedy for ages, but it is not true. She had defined herself by her tragedy. Not the same things. And Thor is so right, when he gives a piece of his mind to her about her martyrdom. I agreed with him so much, even though, just like Autumn, he is unable to let go of his past, to process his tragedy.
I like their backstory which was revealed in Lover Unleashed. They had something common in their past, but went on different paths, until their ways cross each other again.
Despite the very nice turning points in their relationship, I felt the romance superficial. The setting time is a year, and it should be enough for delineating the romance, and the changes of Thor and Autumn’s attitude perfectly. But you are not informed what happens between the above mentioned turning points. For example Thor spends two days thinking, and finally admits to himself that he is in love. Annoyingly, you are not allowed to follow the streams of Thor’s thoughts. You only witness the result, his confession to Autumn. At the same time, Autumn decides that she will change her attitude. I don’t think it would work like that. Autumn has serious self-assessment problems; to solve them she would need professional help, not a simple decision. So I feel the romance and the character development insufficient.
I always loved him, but now… I have no words. I’m dying to keep his book in my hands.
John and Xhex
Xhex and John’s marriage crisis started interesting, and I so sympathized with both of them, for different reasons. Sadly, it became flat in the middle of the story, and ended in a predictable way. But I still love them together, and like the insights of the marriage of Vishous and Jane in Lover Unleashed, it was refreshing.
Xcor and the Band of Bastards
Despite their assassination attempt against the king, I can’t take the B.o.B. seriously. But the characters are intriguing.
First I considered Xcor an insane, egotistical, power-greedy, not too smart maniac with a ridiculously absurd aim. Even his soldiers realize that “with a mind like his and plans such as he had, that was not a good combination.” Of course, these traits are still his, and just because he has an abusive past, he doesn’t become likeable. But slowly it is revealed that he has compassion, principles, and he is capable of regret. So he has values, but also very bad political senses. I still don’t like him, but his character is definitely promising.
At the beginning of the story, I felt sympathy for Throe, and thought him a solid, sober, but weak-willed, submissive member of the B.o.B. But as the story progressed, my feelings took a 180-degree turn, just as Throe’s behavior. After he is released by Xcor, he becomes free, and not in a subordinated role any more, he behaves in an autocratic way. I was nonplussed by his volte-face, and seeing him embracing Xcor’s aim.
Qhuinn and Blay
Qhuinn is totally consumed by his feelings for Blay, by the anguish of their situation and his future in general. He stagnates in the same emotional condition throughout the story, as he did in the previous book, ‘Lover Unleashed’. To my utter disappointment, I can’t see any development. He is still disillusioned, still jealous, still lonely, still in anguish, still feeling himself to be an outcast. He doesn’t communicate, not only with Blay, but with no one. His last thoughts are out of the blue, inspired by the revelation that life is short. Duh.
In spite of their book being the next one in the series, I felt Qhuinn and Blay’s storyline neglected in this installment. Of course their story has been building up since Lover Enshrined, so actually I’m complaining because I didn’t get enough of them in Lover Reborn.
Qhuinn’s heroic (or insanely brave) act made me very proud of him, and I’m very happy for his reward which hopefully will be received in Lover At Last.
Qhuinn and Layla
Their hasty decision is debatable. We’ll see…
Xcor and Layla
What the author doesn’t manage to achieve with the activity of the Band of Bastards, she does it with the attraction between Layla and Xcor. While I can see no chance for a complication more than a fleabite because of the Band of Bastards, what could be between Layla and Xcor would make a nice conflict. I would really love to see it!
Seriously? Who’s that guy? And why should I care about him?
I missed very much the King’s viewpoint. Considering the political situation they are in, it is a big defect of the novel not presenting Wrath’s thoughts.
All in all
Not the best installment of the series, but Ward’s style is still able to captivate me, despite the repeatedly popping-up shitkickers, peanut galleries, and pieholes. Many spectacular episodes made me weep my eyes off. To read the Fade ceremony, and the Brothers’ visit to Thor before that, took me two bites of the cherry, because I didn’t want to completely soak through the pages of the book with my tears.
Needless to say, I’m dying to read Lover At Last, at last…
See my favorite quotes on my Tumblr page,
Daily Quotes by Exina, from 418 to 429.