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Tuesday, December 08, 2020

~ A Warm Heart in Winter ~


Author: J.R. Ward
Title: A Warm Heart in Winter
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood 18,5 (not a standalone)
Pages: 495
Release date: 2020 December 1
Add it on Goodreads
Buy it on Amazon
Rating: ★★★★☆


#1 New York Times bestselling author J.R. Ward is heating things up this winter with a holiday novel featuring some of her most iconic Black Dagger Brothers.

Featuring one of the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s most iconic couples, Blay and Qhuinn find themselves looking forward to their official mating ceremony. When tragedy strikes just before the happy event, all hope seems lost—and everyone in the Black Dagger Brotherhood rallies around the two of them. Will a freak winter storm bring the unthinkable, or will a warm heart in winter ensure that true love is not lost? 

My review: 

First things first, Assail's book (The Thief) was my last read in the BDB series - that was a really low point for me, but now, that the story is back again with my favorite couple, QHUAY, I had to read it. 

I had expectations, because after Lover at Last, Ward needed some things to figure out how to write and some readers were really disappointed how the m/m scenes were represented. 
So I thought Ward will write the ultimate best for Qhuay, the story that they deserve. 

I'm torn between happy and disappointed. This book was so not what I wanted, but on the other hand it was still good and I enjoyed it. It was mostly about Qhuinn and I missed more Blay. Zsadist was the best thing that could happen with this book and I was over the moon with him - although I wanted at least one Zsadist/Bella scene... 

The one thing that everyone wanted for Qhuay - the mating ceremony - was both good and not. At the beginning of the book I thought we got some really big parties with all the thing Bitty was about, and come on, Lassiter is the master of all parties. So when the ceremony was only at the very end of the book, and was only a few pages - you could tell why I'm disappointed. 

The romance is still awesome, I love how Ward writes the emotions and how in love the characters are, but the erotica, pft, that was horrible! Ward can not write gay erotica - still. She hasn't learned from her mistakes from Lover at Last, and did everything the same - no lube, no prep, no anything, just insert A into B. I loooove Qhuinn and Blay to pieces and they deserve so much more. 

The Luchas part was my biggest disappointment. I can't wrap my head around it. Why torture him, why save him, why give Qhuinn something just to take it away? Why! And that love story in Luchas's past, I don't get it either, why give something when you will take it away? I really thought that Luchas's secret would be a child. It would be so much better. So much better!

The Lassiter/Qhuinn scene was good, I was sad but it had to happen. I knew that Lassiter did something good, but Qhuinn had to see it and go through all of that shit to see it for himself. But on the other hand, I wanted more Lassiter too. 

Blay's parents are still so lovely, and Blay it the most adorable thing ever. I love him so much. I couldn't chose between Blay and Qhuinn, I love both but differently - but together the best. 

So after all, I'm happy, because it was another Qhuay book (but let's say it was a Qhuinn book). I'm sad, because Ward hasn't learned from Lover at Last, and I'm sad because Ward is amazing in writing erotica; but not gay erotica, as we can see it. 

To an avid MM reader like me, it's a disappointment.
To a fan of BDB like me was a few years ago, it's a good story, because we are back with the originals.
To a reader who loves the BDB universe and doesn't care about logistics in mm pairings, it's just another great book. 
So I think anyone can find something to love in this book.

Qhuay forever! And as much as I want to say I need more, I won't say it. I want more Qhuay, but not from Ward, not like this. Qhuay's relationship deserves much more. They had two and a half book but I'm still not satisfied, and it seems I wouldn't be. 

Favorite scenes: Qhuinn with the twins, Blay and Qhuinn kissing (at least the kissing scenes were scorching hot!).

Things I won't forgive Ward: Spoilers: Selena'd death (I don't care that she was reincarnated), and now Luchas's death. 

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