Review: “The King” by J.R. Ward

Series: The Black Dagger Brotherhood #12
Published: 04/01/2014
My Review Rating:  3.5 Stars
Goodreads Website:

Long live the King…

After turning his back on the throne for centuries, Wrath, son of Wrath, finally assumed his father’s mantle--with the help of his beloved mate. But the crown sets heavily on his head. As the war with the Lessening Society rages on, and the threat from the Band of Bastards truly hits home, he is forced to make choices that put everything--and everyone--at risk.

Beth Randall thought she knew what she was getting into when she mated the last pure blooded vampire on the planet: An easy ride was not it. But when she decides she wants a child, she’s unprepared for Wrath’s response--or the distance it creates between them.

The question is, will true love win out... or tortured legacy take over?

Spoiler Alert:

Wow… where to even begin?  This latest book sits at a hefty 592 pages. And in keeping with my true self, I read this book in its entirety the first day it was released. I rated this book a 3.5 stars out of 5 stars. While Beth and Wrath’s story carried this book for me, I just couldn’t get past the filler minor story lines this time. I missed the banter between the other “brothers” that was heavily featured in previous books in the filler chapters. The minor story lines about the Band of Bastards just did not hold my attention as they once did in the earlier books.  I often found myself skimming through those chapters to those that related to Beth, Wrath, and the Brotherhood.

Beth and Wrath have always been my favorite characters and knowing that their relationship was on the rocks in this newest installment had me on pins and needles. Their story revolves around Beth’s desire to have a young. Beth knows that Wrath doesn’t want to risk her life trying to have a baby because of the high birth bed death rate of vampire women. While I related to Beth’s desire for a baby, I honestly wanted to smack her. I found her behavior quite neurotic and childish at times.

During the middle half of the book, Beth redeems herself with the decision to sacrifice her desire to relieve Wrath of some of his burdens. Yet, unbeknownst to them, she was pregnant long before her needing.  Wrath is almost immediately de-throned, which leaves him with the decision to keep his mating to Beth or his throne. In this plot twist, the Beth I know and love comes back into her own. She concocts a plan to not only keep Wrath but to give his throne back to him. This takes a lot of sacrifice on her part especially being newly pregnant. Her plan works, but not without consequences on their actions.

By the end of the book, both Wrath and Beth realize that there’s nothing in this world that would ever keep them apart. They both make sacrifices to save each other and the life they both desire. Wrath comes to terms with being the King and makes the hard decisions he’s been avoiding all along to better his kingdom and people. I also loved the back story of Wrath's rise to becoming King. It gave me the feeling of getting to know the mystery that is Wrath a little better and to appreciate his sometimes misguided ideals.

Also worth mentioning is the latest developments with John Matthew. He continues to have these “spells”. I so desperately wanted in this book to have him remember who he was in his past life, but alas that will have to wait for future books.


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