You may have started picking up on the fact that I’m reading J R Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood series. We’re talking a book a day here, but I got some homework done this arvo, so it’s all good.
I just finished the third book, Lover Awakened, which is by far my favourite so far. In fact, I think it would make it onto my top ten romance books list.
It also had by far the most homoerotic vibe so far, and I think it’s so interesting how J R Ward manages to do that in a hetero atmosphere that’s safe enough for leery readers.
Just to get the basic premise out of the way: Six specially bred vampire warriors are part of a mystical brotherhood and they protect their race from extinction. One of them is their blind king, and they are revered but violent and kind of psychotic. But in a good way, I guess.
Ward allows them not only the closeness of loyalty and brotherhood, but also a physical closeness, a physical loyalty. When Zsadist’s mate comes back after 6 weeks of torture and is being checked by the doctor, his brothers hold him up between their two bodies and he hides his face in the king’s mane of black hair.
(There’s a lot of context here: the guy hasn’t let anyone touch him in, like, centuries.)
Another of the brothers feeds his unwitting human roomie/best friend a glass of vamp blood then holds him while his body goes through hell – and climaxes in, er, a climax.
The best thing, I think, is that there’s a lot of ribbing each other about being gay, but not the tiniest hint of judgement or even a great amount of definition between them on the issue. All there is, is their love for each other.
It’s the same reason she pulls off the straight relationships too, I think. One particular part stood out for me: There’s a young kid watching his hero get pussy-whipped by the wife on the phone. The guy hangs up, and Ward writes how he respected his wife too much to do any of that rolling-the-eyes crap.
I like this woman.