Stacia (the 2010 club)'s Reviews > Lover at Last

Lover at Last by J.R. Ward
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Dec 10, 2013

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bookshelves: adult, lgbtq, male-pov, paranormal-romance, vampires
Read in March, 2013


3 stars? 4 stars? I might be flip-flopping on this rating at least once or twice over the next few days. I actually had an easier time rewarding 4 stars to the previous books because my expectations weren't that high to begin with, and I felt like I'd been given more than what I was expecting. In the case of Lover at Last, I think the bar might have been set too high with all of the anticipation to see this relationship finally happen. I'm tempted to stay at 3 stars just for the mention of Ed Hardy footwear. Douchey poser-wear? Don't do that to my brothers! But then again, I'm tempted to go up a point because the mention of masturbating a snow globe was randomly thrown in there and it made me laugh. Decisions, decisions...

If you've read up through book 10 in this series, this review will be safe to read outside of the spoiler tags. Spoiler tags should not be clicked on unless you've read Lover at Last.


All of his life he had wanted to belong.

Qhuay's story = Great but not as epic as I was hoping for. (view spoiler) Although, I can say that the scenes with Qhuinn and Blay were intense - so thumbs up in regard to that. We readers got what we were waiting for, and that's good. For their portion of the book (which simply wasn't enough!), I was happy. Qhuinn's path to self-discovery got me choked up a couple of times.
He started to cry. Thank fuck for the hood.

Surprisingly, my favorite scene of all was not a Qhuay scene, but an interaction between Xcor and Layla. I generally shy away from using any sort of Romeo and Juliet reference because we all know how that tale turned out (hint : it wasn't good), but when two people from opposite sides of a war are drawn to one another, there's an interesting twist to the character turmoil. Without giving away any plot details, I FELT the raw emotion. I really want Xcor and Layla to get their own book.
"Do not cry." His thumb went to her cheeks. "Beautiful female of worth, do not cry."

You know who I don't want getting a book? Oh...just about all of the other characters who got side billing this time around. I found myself skimming a good portion of the book (outside of Qhuay, the brothers and Xcor/Layla, of course).

Assail and Sola? Please, no.
Trez? Eh.
What's next? All of the additional family members of the brothers? (view spoiler)
Is the Scribe Virgin going to break out and start getting freaky? I can't really tell anymore.
Will Lassiter ever be more than comic relief?

It's time to start wrapping this series up, Ward. The brothers have found love. Let's not start bringing in a bunch of new characters just to milk the series for all its worth. Quality is starting to take a backseat to quantity and I'd hate to see the appeal of the BDB dragged out way past its prime.
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Comments (showing 1-50 of 77) (77 new)


message 1: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Espinoza I want to read this so bad, but will wait on your review to see if it's worth the money. Thanks for taking one for the team! :0)


Stacia (the 2010 club) It's been a while since I've been disappointed in a BDB book (Phury), so I have a somewhat positive outlook. Here's hoping!

Chiqui wrote: "Loved the does not squee Stacia!! Lol"

Thanks, haha.


message 3: by Dawnie (new)

Dawnie I've only read #1 DARK LOVER and #3 LOVER AWAKENED (the latter being one of my fav romances of all time). I want to skip the ones that aren't so great. Which ones would you recommend?


Stacia (the 2010 club) Number 2 is one of my favorite books. Actually, I love the entire series other than books 1 and 6, which were both lackluster. So I'd say to just read them in order anyway because after about book 6, the stories stop reading as stand-alones and all of the stories start to interweave in a bigger way. A couple of the featured romances in the later books actually start in prior books, so you might miss some of the buildup. There's no hurry because we're waiting a year between publications now and the series isn't done yet.


message 5: by Dawnie (new)

Dawnie Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "Number 2 is one of my favorite books. Actually, I love the entire series other than books 1 and 6, which were both lackluster. So I'd say to just read them in order anyway because after about book ..."

Thanks! Great advice. Looks like book 2 is about to get its read on. Or would that be being read on?


Stacia (the 2010 club) I don't know. Grammar owns me.


message 7: by Ash Wednesday (new)

Ash Wednesday I hated HATED Phury's book x.x outside the first 3, I loved Rhev's the best. I'm gonna wait on your word on this :)


Stacia (the 2010 club) Yep. Phury's was the other book I wasn't a big fan of other than (view spoiler). That was 6, right?

Rehv = yum.


message 9: by Ash Wednesday (new)

Ash Wednesday I can't even keep track anymore, I just pretend that one never happened :) you didn't like 1? Not a fan of peaches? *snickers*


Kassandra Jealous.


message 11: by Giedre (last edited Mar 26, 2013 03:33AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Giedre I think I'll be done with this series after I read this one. I just hope it will be good. Ah, expectations... Can't wait to read your review. :)


message 12: by Libbie (new)

Libbie I'm waiting to see what you think of this one before I decide whether or not to read it when the used copies go up. She lost me at Payne's story and I didn't even read the last one.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Ash, it's been so long...I think Wrath was too pro-wrestler for my taste.

I didn't realize people had been bailing on the series! I'm probably one of the few people who thinks it's improved with time.


message 14: by Libbie (new)

Libbie Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "I didn't realize people had been bailing on the series! I'm probably one of the few people who thinks it's improved with ..."

IMHO, there have been hits and misses over the course of the series, but Payne's story was such a trainwreck, I couldn't go on with it.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Payne's story didn't bother me, but I like where her character development has gone. She is playing an interesting role in this book.


message 16: by Libbie (new)

Libbie Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "Payne's story didn't bother me, but I like where her character development has gone. She is playing an interesting role in this book."

To each their own :)


message 17: by Ash Wednesday (last edited Mar 27, 2013 05:10PM) (new)

Ash Wednesday Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "Ash, it's been so long...I think Wrath was too pro-wrestler for my taste.

I didn't realize people had been bailing on the series! I'm probably one of the few people who thinks it's improved with ..."


I think there's been too many new characters that has been added in the series for, I fear, the sake of prolonging the story. I quite liked what JR Ward did in Lover Unleashed where the story was centered on both Payne and Manny and a continuity of V and Jane's while the Band of Bastards got introduced. I'm more interested with the development of the bigger story arc and how each of the existing characters/couples figure in it than a book about John Matthew's long lost cousin who is a werewolf and falls in love with Havers o.0


jenni... lucky you. can't afford to buy this yet. sigh.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Jenni, I'll msg you.

Ash Wednesday (Cream Cheese and Crackers) wrote: "Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "Ash, it's been so long...I think Wrath was too pro-wrestler for my taste.

I didn't realize people had been bailing on the series! I'm probably one of the few peopl..."


The additional characters is one of my major complaints. I don't mind the UF direction or how there's more than one story in each book but there's too much.


message 20: by Libbie (new)

Libbie Stacia (does not squee) wrote: "The additional characters is one of my major complaints. I don't mind the UF direction or how there's more than one story in each book but there's too much. "

Yep. One of my major peeves. I miss the days when it was the one brother's story, a little subplot, and the secondary characters thrown in for comic relief/plot exposition.


message 21: by Ash Wednesday (new)

Ash Wednesday LMAO at snow globe masturbation :)


Tellulah Darling lol - additional family members! Yes, she'll go there and I will not follow. Great review as always. :)


message 23: by Anna (Bobs Her Hair) (last edited Mar 27, 2013 08:47PM) (new) - added it

Anna (Bobs Her Hair) Awww...love the Xcor quote! So, it sounds like you're saying this book gives Blay/Qhuinn their HEA, but mostly strings BDB fans along to read the new secondary characters' future stories. I'm interested in Xcor & Layla. It's Beauty and the Beast meets Romeo & Juliet.


message 24: by Anna (new)

Anna This is a very long series. I envy everyone who's read it all, but I don't know when I'll be able to pick up one.


message 25: by Tara (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tara Yay Team Xcor!!!


message 26: by Leea (new) - rated it 3 stars

Leea Great review!! I haven't finished so I stayed away from the spoilers :)


Stacia (the 2010 club) Tara and Anna, I think I like Xcor so much because of how the deck is not stacked in his favor.

Anna C., these are good in between books, for when you're wanting to read something but don't want to have to start a new series. I read the first few and then didn't read any for close to a year, then picked them back up when I was in the mood for something familiar.

Tellulah wrote: "lol - additional family members! Yes, she'll go there and I will not follow. Great review as always. :)"

And in the spin-off of the spin-off....


Stacia (the 2010 club) Leea wrote: "Great review!! I haven't finished so I stayed away from the spoilers :)"

Are you liking it any better now?


message 29: by Leea (new) - rated it 3 stars

Leea well, I started skimming... haha!


Stacia (the 2010 club) I think if I could take out the parts that I skimmed, this would have been a 4 star plus book. It's almost stuck in my head now "oh hey, it's BDB...there's going to be some sort of stupid politics or combat crap that will need to be skimmed." I've been skimming the lesser stuff since book 1...

I guess it's a testament to two things -

1. Ward writes such compelling relationships (not just romantic, but also familial and friendship based) that it keeps me coming back for more.
2. Ward writes a lot of superfluous crap. She's the pnr version of Gabaldon, haha.


message 31: by Leea (new) - rated it 3 stars

Leea Haha! Great points and I have to agree. For me it's too many story lines going on and I honestly cannot concentrate on more than 3 at a time. Thus the skimming.


message 32: by Giedre (last edited Mar 28, 2013 01:56AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Giedre It's time to start wrapping this series up, Ward. The brothers have found love. Let's not start bringing in a bunch of new characters just to milk the series for all its worth.

This, a thousand times. That's why I'll be done after this one. Everyone's had their HEA. Well, there's still Lassiter and Layla. But I've never cared for Lassiter, and Layla I find to be extremely annoying. I just want to bitchslap her back into 1800s.

Honestly, I've never believed this series was well written. It's cheesy in a way that only a book that's written by a white woman in a style that might be described as gangsta could be. Yeah... not good. What it had going for it was was its cracktastic addictiveness and the well drawn relationships between the brothers. I'm still pissed off that Vishous is not with Butch. Instead, one's with a boring ex-society chick and the other is with a ghost... Don't get me started on that one. Honestly, all of the brothers should have been gay, because all Ward's women are cardboard. It's like she doesn't care about them enough to write them well. She clearly cares about the men. Ergo, she should've skipped the women and wrote only about the men. Ugh.

Anyway, great review, Stacia. I'll stop with my rant now. :)


Stacia (the 2010 club) I like reading rants. There's a Butch/V fanfic I read a while back which put them as a couple. It was an interesting experience.

You make a good point about the women. Most of them are fairly interchangeable. I liked Beth in this book. She seems to be something of a mother hen.

I also agree that outside of the personal connections which are well drawn, the writing itself is not very good. This is one of my guilty pleasure series.

I tried reading one of Ward's contemporaries and it was awful. When you don't get to rely on paranormal reasons for caveman behavior or chain orgasms, there's not much of a leg to stand on.


Giedre Interesting? Please elaborate :)
Well, I'm sad to say that the only woman in the series I genuinely enjoyed was Xhex.
I read her contemporaries a while ago. I don't remember much about them, but I do remember quite enjoying them. Lol, oh well.
The only thing I'm hoping for in 'Lover at Last' is to enjoy Qhuinn and Blay's HEA. And less Layla, but that one doesn't seem likely.


message 35: by Dayatara (new)

Dayatara I enjoyed your review! I'm not interested in reading any more of this series. I never enjoyed reading about the lessers until the Lash storyline. I found that to be very interesting. I hated him but when he got killed off, I was disappointed because I knew we'd be back to boring lesser stuff.


message 36: by Mariya (new) - added it

Mariya I agree, Stacia. I'm getting sick of the side stories going on and then every freaking character that is mentioned in those side stories getting a book, just so this series can go on and on and on?! It's ridiculous. I think she needs to wrap up this series. If she doesn't. I probaly won't be continuing with it. I"ll read a Laya and Xcor book, which their probaly will be, but the rest, ummm. no.


message 37: by Stacia (the 2010 club) (last edited Mar 28, 2013 09:56AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Stacia (the 2010 club) Knowing me, I'll probably still read the series, even if it goes way out in left field, only because Ward tends to continue on with updating the brothers (even if only in small increments) and I'd want to know what was going on with them.

Dayatara, what's strange for me is that the extra PoV's weren't really bothering me up until this book. I liked how the series had intertwined all of the characters. What really pushed me this time was when I realized that the scenes with the brothers were so few and far between, and all of the major storyline not involving Qhuay was taken up by people not in the brotherhood. That was just wrong, even if I do like where the Xcor/Layla thing is headed.

Giedre wrote: "Interesting? Please elaborate :)..."

The person who did the fanfic wrote pretty close to Ward's style. The full-length book was a "what if" scenario written from the perspective of V and Butch meeting and falling for each other, so the women weren't there. There might have been more sex scenes than a normal BDB from what I recall.

I actually want more Layla, but not for her specifically because I have no attachment to her. I'm just so taken with Xcor (he's my new favorite character) that I want to see how his story plays out and he obviously admires Layla, even if they haven't done anything, so we know that's where it's gonna go.


Giedre Hm, maybe I should start reading fanfic... lol.
I don't have any major feels for Xcor. Then again, I've only read 50 or so pages. Maybe I will by the end of the book. I just... ugh, Xcor and Layla... Maybe if she grows a steel-plated vagina.


Stacia (the 2010 club) Layla goes back to the cookie-cutter virginal female that Ward seems to favor. She started to grow on me a little in this book but I hated most of her entire storyline with Qhuinn.

Get back to me after you read the Xcor/Layla conversation which takes place at/in a car near the end of the book. I'll be curious to see what you think and if it did or didn't work for you.


Giedre Once again, the whole "Qhuinn+Layla= baby " thing isn't working for me.
Will do :)


Tellulah Darling Giedre wrote: "It's time to start wrapping this series up, Ward. The brothers have found love. Let's not start bringing in a bunch of new characters just to milk the series for all its worth.

This, a thousand ti..."


"Bitchslap her back to the 1800s" - wiping away tears of laughter now...


message 42: by Brigid (new)

Brigid I stopped reading this series after Rev's book, and now I don't know who half the people are. Should I pick it back up? I loved loved LOVED the first 6 books in the series. Even V's and Phury's books, which seemed kind of hit-or-miss for other people. But then something happened with Rev's book and I started to lose interest. Same with the Sookie Stackhouse series. I don't know. I'm rambling. But you know I love me a good brother book. :-D


Bitchie I refused to read any reviews til I'd finished the story and wrote my own review, and you and I seem to have both loved and hated the same parts of this story.


TJlovestoread Blog your last paragraph.... TOTALLY AGREE with you... enough is enough, the series can be dragged at least 2 or 3 books and that's it.. no more.... maybe she can come up with a spin off or something


*P*u*r*p*l*e* Masochist Ditto...I'm so happz they and 20 other people finally got their book and HEA, but in the end I was like: that's it?


message 46: by Dianne (new) - added it

Dianne Holy Crap! I pre-ordered this in July....have been waiting for the appropriate moment to read it uninterrupted...which was supposed to be in about 5 minutes...I should have done like Bitchie (cute name) and not read any reviews until I was finished! Ugh...


Nicolette Just finished, and I'm with you on the review. The primary characters seem to get so little face time in her latest editions. At the same time, leaving the storylines hanging for all of the side characters annoyed me. I also think she tends to keep the females simple so the readers can more readily imagine themselves in their place. Ha.


Rachel the Book Harlot Great review, Stacia! :) I dropped the series after Lover Unleashed. To be honest, I lost respect for the series once continuity issues became so glaring that they jumped out at me, and when the rules to her own world started to fall apart or change whenever it suited the plot. Bitter? Yeah, a little. lol I will probably read the Mary/Rhage novella when that's released but I think that's it for me. Or maybe even the Trez/Selena book (depending on the reviews) since I've always liked Trez. Sucks because this was my all time favorite series.


Stacia (the 2010 club) It's interesting to read all of the comments after the fact and see that a lot of people were frustrated over many of the same things.

Rachel, it looks like a lot of people are having similar complaints. I feel like I've come so far with the series that I want to see it through, even if it drags out longer than necessary. For me, even a weak BDB book is still an enjoyable read (and I can pro-skim the lesser story stuff), so I can't imagine not continuing.

Brigid, it's hard to know. You left off at a point right where the series shifted into less of a pnr and more of an urban fantasy style of writing. Once you step back in, all of the stories are going to have loose ends, until each of the new/side characters mentioned get their own book. There won't be any more single-book closure from there on out, so it becomes more of an investment. That might be your deciding factor, if you want to be all in or not. I could see why this would be a deterrent for many.

Then again, I think John Matthew's book was a powerful one. Ack, that doesn't help, does it?

Dianne, the book might still work for you. Think positive! There were many great points of the book. I didn't dislike it at all, even with some complaints.


Bitchie I haven't NOT liked any book in the series, other than Phury's book. I'm just tired of skimming the bits that don't interest me, which is why I'm not sure if I'll continue or not. Heck, I just read Tohr's book this week, in anticipation of LaL.


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