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Review: Lover Awakened (BDB #3) by J.R. Ward

Lover Awakened
(Black Dagger Brotherhood #3)
By J.R. Ward
434 Pages
Published September 5, 2006
ISBN: 9780451219367
Courtesy of Me, Myself, and I

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And there exists a secret band of brothers like no other - six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Of these, Zsadist is the most terrifying member of the Black Dagger Brotherhood.

A former blood slave, the vampire Zsadist still bears the scars from a past filled with suffering and humiliation. Renowned for his unquenchable fury and sinister deeds, he is a savage feared by humans and vampires alike. Anger is his only companion, and terror is his only passion—until he rescues a beautiful aristocrat from the evil Lessening Society.

Bella is instantly entranced by the seething power Zsadist possesses. But even as their desire for one another begins to overtake them both, Zsadist’s thirst for vengeance against Bella’s tormentors drives him to the brink of madness. Now, Bella must help her lover overcome the wounds of his tortured past, and find a future with her.


What to say about this book...I LOVED IT! This was one of my favorite books from the series. The ones that seem the most gone are the ones that are the hardest to fall and will take your heart with them on the way.

As Phury put it, "Zsadist is ruined, not broken." Having been a former blood slave, he is still struggling to come to grips with what we would call PTSD these days. The blood slave tattoo around his neck doesn't help with him trying to forget. It is a daily reminder of what he once was. Everything changed for him the day the brothers got notice that the aristocrat Bella was kidnapped by lessers. Consumed with the need to save her, he doesn't sleep, eat, and avoids the other brothers more than he already does. Finally able to rescue her, the brothers are shocked to see Z acting like a bonded male towards Bella and are not quite sure what to do other than let him watch over and assist with her healing and hope he doesn't hurt her. 

Bella can't believe she is out of that hell hole she was in. Literally. She is even more astonished to find that Zsadist is the one helping her get better. And is that a bonding scent coming off him? Yes, that makes everything better and helps her be able to work through a lot of the hard stuff. Z is another story altogether though. He seems like he is struggling with revenge and it's eating him up inside. Bella goes on her own mission to help Zsadist come to grips with his past and the present with her kidnapping. She needs him here with her. She knows he is the one she wants to spend her days with and that makes all the difference.

Zsadist was constantly breaking my heart in this story. He is such a tortured soul that you just want to hold and take all his cares away. When we learn more about Z's past, I can't help but feel my heart ache for what he was put through before Phury rescued him. Let's not even get into what Z puts Phury through. That is for another book. At least Bella comes into his life and offers him the solace and sunshine he needs to make him whole again. Ward couldn't have thought up a better heroine to pair with this wounded soul.


J.R. Ward keeps outdoing herself with the emotional levels in her books. This was even better than the other two in the series. :)

Wow. You will know what part of the book I am talking about. Intense.


  1. Didn't I just read your review the other day for Lover Eternal? haha Something tells me you couldn't put this series down! Great Review I can't wait to read this book. It is on my bookshelf calling my name as I type!

  2. I did post that yesterday. LOL. Actually, I have been hoarding these reviews for this week for Ward's new book release tomorrow. Kind of a theme for me. :)

    This was a reeeeeeeeally good book. If you haven't read the series yet you definitely need to jump on it. Like yesterday. :D

  3. Lover Awakened was my favorite in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. I didn't read some of the later ones yet, though. Wrath, V, and Rhage were also good stories...but Zsadist remains my fav!