This was probably one of the more unique ways of storytelling that I have seen in a very long time. Taking six seemingly independent short stories and tying them together where not only does one influence the next, but they all have common threads and tie-ins with one another… rather fun to see and watch.
Now… I know there is a film out there that was inspired, adapted from the book itself, but I haven’t seen it and I still have yet to decide if I really wanted to… so until then I will focus more on the short stories and what I liked and didn’t like… come to think of it lets my life easier and just do a quick list first: 1: The Pacific Journal of Adam Ewing – Meh 2: Letters from Zedelghem – Meh 3: Half-Lives: The First Luisa Rey Mystery – Love 4: The Ghastly Ordeal of Timothy Cavendish – Like 5: An Orison of Sonmi~451 – Love 6: Sloosha’s Crossin’ an’ Ev’rythin’ After – Meh
So the second half of the post I would focus on those that I either liked or loved and those that got a “meh” I might go ahead and talk a little about them, but not really… mainly because they were just “meh” to me.
Anyway, the novel opens with a short story that goes into the past and continues until it reaches a particular climax when it then opens the next story in chronological order and stops when that hits the climax and rinse and repeat until the sixth story in the series when it goes uninterrupted until a moment in time when the action has ended and the protagonist (or relation thereof) goes back to the story, film, inspiration that drove some of the action in their particular thread and opens to the climax of the previous story and so on…. confused yet?
Well… let’s look at it from a numeric point of view:
first half of story 1 –>
first half of story 2 –>
first half of story 3 –>
first half of story 4 –>
first half of story 5 –> story 6 –> second half of story 5 –>
second half of story 4 –>
second half of story 3 –>
second half of story 2 –>
second half of story 1
It is like opening a book in the middle and placing another book in it and opening that in the middle and rinse and repeat for up to six books and then just read all six books straight through like that. A little disconcerting to be sure, but fun to me nonetheless.
After JR Ward completed the first six books in her Black Dagger Brotherhood series she took a “break” to write “An Insider’s Guide”, this includes not only a few interviews with the Brothers from BDB but also tips and notes as she wrote through the first six novels in the series.
Kicks and Giggles
The Brothers on the Board
Slices of Life from the Board
Question and Answer with JR
Time Line of the Brotherhood
Table of Abbreviations
The Old Language
The Brothers Interview JR
Excerpt from Lover Avenged
Father Mine: A Novella of Zsadist and Bella and Nalla
The novella caught my attention first, well considering it was the first thing in the guide is that really a surprised? For anyone that remembered Lover Awakened, between the end of the primary story and the Epilogue there was a period of time that was skipped. While snippets of this ends up being filled in over the course of the following three books (Lover Revealed, Lover Unbound and Lover Enshrined)… the piece that is missing is the period of time between the birth of Nalla and what happens in the Epilogue of Lover Awakened.
What this novella does is not only fill in that missing piece of the timeline but ties it all back to what was already written in the epilogue and continuing for a moment thereafter. Although the novella focuses on how Zsadist comes to terms further with his past as a blood slave and how to approach his newborn daughter with that news… there are a few snippets here and there that ties in with a few of the other Brothers in the Brotherhood.
When I first read / listened to Lover Awakened to the end, I felt that Zsadist had quite a bit story left in his, particularly when it came to his daughter. So I was rather pleased when I read this novella and realized that JR Ward did exactly just that and developed more of Zsadist healing period and confronting the demons when it came to his daughter. Now Lover Awakened made a lot more sense to me.
Much like how I did with various Modern Adaptations of Shakespeare’s Classics here is a quick list of various modernizations of Jane Austen’s novels that I have seen and appreciated on some level (so this is by no means a comprehensive list by any stretch of the imagination): EMMA
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
Bride and Prejudice
I Love You Because
The Lizzie Bennet Diaries
Now the interesting thing to note is that I actually did a little bit of research about this and realized that out of six of Jane Austen’s novels only two have been modernized and adapted whilst still keeping the intergrity of the primary storyline and the majority of the characters.
Rather odd if you ask me.
Granted one of the major modernizations that most everyone would know about but I have yet to have seen would be Bridget Jones’ Diary. Now why haven’t I seen it? Simple, because all the clips and trailers I have found online haven’t lured me enough to have any kind of desire to watch the movie itself. It is simple not my cup of tea from what I have been able to see. Sad isn’t it?
So since I have already devoted several posts to The Lizzie Bennet Diaries I am not going to touch that particular modern adaptation in this particular post, instead just focusing on the other three…
Probably one of the more tedious novels in the series. Lover Reborn is the culmination of the storyline of Tohrment’s grief over his beloved Wellsie’s death and how he attempts to move on by learning to not just let go, but truly let go.
Before moving on, let’s look at the ninth cheat sheet about some of the players in this particular novel: Book Thingo: Black Dagger Brotherhood Cheat Sheet Part 9
- Black Dagger Brotherhood: Tohrment, son of Hharm
- Muhrder, son of Murhder aka Eliahu Rathboone
- The Coffins
- Story of Son
Two new characters who will both play a significant role in dragging Tohrment out of his stupid includes the Fallen Angel Lassiter and the enigmatic No’One.
Ever since the death of his shellan, Tohrment is a heartbroken shadow of the vampire leader he once was. Brought back to the Brotherhood by a self-serving fallen angel, he fights again with ruthless vengeance- and is unprepared for a new tragedy. Seeing his beloved in dreams—trapped in a cold, desolate netherworld—he turns to the angel to save his former mate, only to despair at the path he himself must take to set her free. As war with the lessers rages, and a new clan of vampires vies for the Blind King’s throne, Tohr struggles between an unforgettable past, and a future that he doesn’t know he can live with… but can’t seem to turn away from.
If there was one major difference between the life of Elissa Wall and that of Carolyn Jessop during their time in the FLDS it is that Carolyn is legitimately college educated and has worked as an educated in both the public school system and within the FLDS community at Alta Academy.
Elissa did not get that chance of being able to learn all that she could from a public school system, she may have had a few years (if memory serves) but even then she may not have gone further than a high school education.
Because of that significant difference, Carolyn by virtue of her background was able to discern the differences between her life before Warren Jeffs took over and after. Which is probably another major difference between the two women…. Elissa Wall throughout her life has only known of how life was when Warren Jeffs was in power (for most of it) while Carolyn has known how life in the FLDS was prior to Warren and probably during Rulon’s early years.
Yes, I know that the above doesn’t make sense, but I am just writing / typing / blogging whatever is coming to mind at this point… so bare(bear?) with me.
Ah yes, the ninth book in the series dives further into the vampire lore, in particular Vishous’ background and past when tied to his (unknown to him) twin sister Payne. Much of this information between brother and sister you could find in the Book Thingo: Black Dagger Brotherhood Cheat Sheet (Part 5)
- Vishous, son of the Bloodletter
- Dr Manuel Manello
- Medical quirks
- The Bloodletter
One of the things I found myself thinking about this particular novel in the series was various similarities between this particular storyline and that between Vishous and his mate Jane Whitcomb in Book 5: Lover Unbound. In fact I may go so far as to say that a small part of me felt that this was like Lover Unbound only in reverse… but really that similarity is only drawn because the human mate happens to be a well renown doctor in both cases and that the vampire in both instances happen to be the offspring of the Scribe Virgin (the all mighty being of the vampire species).
However, the similarities (for the most part) end there. Dr Manuel Manello has blood ties much closer to the vampire species than Jane does… though Jane knew who her husband was to be as a child even though she didn’t really understand it much as a child.
Before I go on though:
Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother: A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either.
When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can – and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world. Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night – like vampires – he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.
As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide… just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy.
If you were to ask me why I decided to pick up a few audiobooks about those that have fled the “polygamist cult” also know as “The Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints” – FLDS for short – I wouldn’t be able to give you a straight answer.
I think it started while I was browsing various news articles one day on Yahoo.com and came across one about a young woman by the name of Ruby Jessop who fled FLDS and reached out to her sister (or was it cousin) Flora Jessop who had left years earlier.
The Yahoo News article expanded by talking about others that have fled including Suzette Steed and her children when their father/patriarch – Carling Steed – was banished from the FLDS community by Warren Jeffs. Within the article a few of the daughters mentioned how they were most afraid of being arranged in a marriage with someone that they would dislike… to which a cousin of theirs – Elissa Wall – understood.
According to Elissa she was forced to marry her first-cousin when she was 14 and he 19 (much like Ruby Jessop who was forced to marry her second-cousin when she was 14 and he in his early 20s). Elissa recounts her experiences before, during and after her ill-fated marriage in her personal memoir: Stolen Innocence.