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Ratings and Reviews (15 194 star ratings
15 reviews

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4.4 out of 5
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  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    This is easily one of the best books of 2015!

    It's been almost a week since I read this book and I'm still struggling to put words to all the feelings this book has given me. I've always heard J.R. Ward's writing was epic, but this is the first time I've had the chance to experience it for myself. Everything I heard about this book was true and then some. I wasn't able to put the book down and it gave me perhaps the worst book hangover ever. I lost sleep over it. Now it wasn't just the usual "I stayed up late reading" hangover but the, "I finished the book and I can't sleep because I'm still thinking about it" kind of hangover. The blurb on this book is really deceptive. I went in expecting the story to focus on Lizzie and Tulane Baldwine, also better known as Lane. Instead I got a saga focusing on almost all of the inhabitants of Easterly, in particular Lane's siblings and that's not a bad thing. What I found was I loved them as much as I loved Lane. Lane and his siblings have not had an easy time growing up. Edward, Lane, Max, and Gin may have had every material advantage growing up except for what they probably needed most. I'm not even sure how to describe the plot. The story starts off focusing on Lizzie and Lane and then to Gin and Edward and what's going on in their lives. Each of the Baldwine siblings is seemingly independent of the other and their lives don't really intersect until Lane comes home and the familial empire begins to unravel. And boy does it all start to come apart. Usually when there's a complicated story like this one with multiple arcs, one or more can be neglected while another muscles in and takes most of the spotlight. Not in this case. Whether it was Gin trying to figure things out, or Edward trying to muscle him self into the living again, or Lane trying to cut the dead weight and figure out what was going on with his family, each arc was integrated seamlessly with the other and each was equally important. I can not begin to tell you how emotionally involved I was with this story. I felt like I was there in Kentucky watching everything unfold and it was really difficult at times. There were few happy times, but there was a lot of rage, both coming from the characters towards the person responsible for ruining the Baldwines and Bradfords, but also from me. I tend to immerse myself in the story. The character's agonies become mine and their joys become mine too. There was so much pain, agony, and suffering in this story. I literally wanted to reach into my kindle and throttle the persons responsible for so much pain. There wasn't just anger, but there was pain and frustration too. I cried a number of times just because it's all I could do. Even though at times it was almost possible to read due to my emotions, I couldn't put the book down. I had to know if things worked out for Lizzie and Lane, Gin and her dreams, Edward and the love of his life. All I know is this, the book is amazing. It's one of those you have to read and experience to believe. There are so many twists and revelations you won't be prepared or ready for all of them. You'll like and fall in love with the Baldwine siblings, Lizzie, and others you'll meet and you'll loathe and despise others. J.R. Ward has done a phenomenal job with this book. If her paranormal romances are anything like this one, I will be in book worm heaven. As it is, I have no idea how I'm going to wait for the next book in this series. I have so many questions and I'm hoping for some sort of happily ever after. As it stands, I have a feeling there is much more upheaval in store for the Bradford Distillery, the Baldwines, Easterly, and all those who are tied to it and its inhabitants. This is just the calm before the storm.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    As usual JR Ward is up to the task of delivering yet another great book! Can't wait for more of the Bourbon Kings to unravel
  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    A different side of the author

    J.R. Ward is one of my very favorite authors. So when I got the opportunity to review an early copy of the first book in her new series, I jumped at the chance. THE BOURBON KINGS is a world away from the author’s other books. The story has a completely distinctive tone. If I didn’t know J.R. Ward’s name was on the front cover of the book, I would think someone else wrote it. The story is one big soap opera with a lot of drama. Betrayal, infidelity and greed, are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Move over Kennedys, there’s a new family taking up residence in Crazy Town. I had a hard time getting into the story and an even harder time connecting with the characters. If you’re hoping for the writing style of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, you will be very disappointed. THE BOURBON KINGS is a totally sophisticated read full of drama. The book is likened to the television shows of Dallas and Dynasty. I would say, that is a very accurate comparison. This ain’t your average vampire warrior book. The book is well-written, the characters are devious and two-faced and there is a lot of money and power being wielded. There is no question of the brilliance of the writing, plot-building or the tangled web of deceit holding this cast of motley crewed characters together. I was disappointed though because there’s not much romance going on. Lizzie and Lane’s relationship—if you want to call it that—was deeply overshadowed by the rest of the ruthless Bradford family. This was a hard book for me to review. I liked the story, but when I put it into words, I found I constantly kept repeating myself because the theme is the same throughout the story. Bottom line: The book is good, but it’s a different beast altogether from her previous books. ***I was gifted a hardcover copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All conclusions reached are my own***
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    Cliff hangers need to be outlawed! Arggggg! J. R. Ward has got to be one of the most versatile authors around. She went from writing paranormal romance to something in the here and now with no witchcraft, vampires, werewolves, angels or other Supernatural creatures around, unless you count God as Supernatural. The Bourbon Kings is all human. One hundred percent human. And I LOVE IT! I guess WOW doesn't really cover it! WOW is just too paltry a word to convey what Ms. Ward put forth with this new series. Of course there is of given family, love of friends you've taken on as family, love of drink but most of all, and I think this will bear through when all is said and done, love of the heart. What do you do when you were born with the proverbial silver spoon in your mouth, a father who is all about appearances and money, a mother who seems to be emotionally, if not physically, absent from your life, two brothers and a sister whom you love but are dysfunctional all on their own? You escape. You try to drink yourself to an early grave. You gamble. You lose yourself in the mundane and the money you grew up with. Not that losing yourself helps in the least. You try to forget the lost love of your life. Unsuccessfully. When all is said and done I believe The Bourbon Kings will be on my reread list for a very long time because it will get read and read and read again. Many times over.
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    The Bourbon Kings

    J.R. Ward has done it again with this outstanding storyline. The strong masculine characters & the heroines engage you for a wild & thrilling ride into riches & sin.

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