Friday, December 5, 2008

The Black Dagger Brotherhood: An Insider's Guide by J. R. Ward

For fans of J. R. Ward's The Black Dagger Brotherhood series, the bad news is that the next book in the series does not come out until May 2009. The good news is that Ward has released an insider's guide to the series that is chock full of goodies for her fans. While this book will probably not interest anyone who hasn't read the series, it has some interesting stuff in it for those who have.

The Insider's Guide has deleted scenes, and ultra short stories featuring the brothers and their mates that Ward calls "Slices of Life." These will be familiar to anyone who has perused Ward's web site, as well as material that she pulled directly from the boards on her site. She also includes "interviews" with, and a dossier on each of the brothers, advice for anyone hoping to write a novel, a Question and Answer session, and an intriguing excerpt of the next book, Lover Avenged.

However, the part that I found most intriguing, and the main reason I enjoyed the book was because of the novella featuring Zsadist, Bella and their daughter. Of all the books in the series, my favorite was Lover Awakened, and I was most engaged by Zsadist's and Bella's story. Furthermore, as satisfying as Lover Awakened was, the end of the book leaves Zsadist at the beginning of his journey to healing, and one can imagine that the birth of his daughter, while joyful, could also bring up demons from his past that he has to deal with.

Consequently, I was thrilled to find out that Ward had included a 78 page story called Father Mine that deals with the aftermath of Nalla's birth, and next step in Zsadist's and Bella's journey. Father Mine was powerful, realistic in terms of the characters' emotional journeys, and satisfying.

Although this book is not the next in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, it is a good book to tide fans over until May. Definitely worth checking out if you're a fan.

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