Date: 6th December 2016
Source: Thanks to Hachette NZ
Trainees at the Black Dagger Brotherhood's training centre continue to prepare for the fight against the Lessening Society, but fighting is the last thing on Axe's mind. Still plagued with guilt of his father's death, the brooding loner finds himself battling an unlikely attraction to Peyton's bright, aristocratic cousin, Eise.
Elise feels it too- and when the two are thrown together in unusual circumstances Elise must decide whether she can trust Axe to help her uncover the mystery surrounding her cousin's death.
Meanwhile Mary and Rhage are in the process of adopting Bitty, a young pretrans orphan, until the appearance of a young male claiming to be Bitty's blooded uncle threatens to tear the new family apart.
Blood Vow by J. R. Ward is #2 in the The Black Dagger Legacy, an offshoot of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. The first book introduced us to the new trainees and was very action oriented. It followed mostly Paradise and Craeg. For this one I predicted it could be all about Peyton another trainee, however while it did include him considerably the main focus was on Axe and a cousin of Peyton's - Elise.
Whereas #1 was full of action this one is more of a relationships book and I really loved it. As well as Axe and Elise we also follow Rhage and Mary and their newly about to be adopted daughter Bitty. Including a good deal of the Brothers made my reading of the book so enjoyable. Rhage makes a fantastic daddy, Mary is a superb mother and Bitty is a young thirteen year old who adores them both. But it turns out the question is - will they get to keep her?
Axe has lost his parents, he doesn't have a cent to his name, although he is fortunate enough to still have his parents' house to live. When we meet him he is still very angry and addicted to kinky sex. He is at loggerheads with Peyton, and there is constant tension between the two. His mother left himself and his father years back and Axe is cynical and not about to indulge in anything romantic or loving.
Elise is part of the glymera, (nobility) she is intelligent and strong, yet the family she lives in is dysfunctional and she has a father who is over protective and shows no signs of affection. She is attracted to Axe and their relationship begins to develop from the first time they set eyes on each other. However while alike in some things they are different and it will take some time for them to iron out all those differences.
This book moved along at a great pace, the characters developed over time and I was totally engaged the whole time. I loved the dialogue, the action, and the introduction of a new character.
Those Brothers are as we know badasses with such mushy centres that just melt for their loved ones, and they are out to make the world a better and safer place. I loved Lassiter (fallen angel) in this one, he was wonderful and I loved his last scene. Gave me a big chuckle.
Actually this book is amongst some of the best Christmas stories I have read this year. Really looking forward to #3. J. R. Ward has me hooked.