Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Chosen by J.R. Ward - Waiting On Wednesday

I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am that The Chosen will be here soon, I have been rooting for Xcor since day one.  I am one of those readers that always hopes the bad guy can find his happiness, even if he never becomes what everyone else would consider a Hero.  I mean come on Anti-Hero's need love too and no Anti-Hero deserves it more than Xcor in my opinion.  I have loved 'watching' him grow over the last several Black Dagger Brotherhood books.  While he has never been a cut and dry character his complexity and depth is more than I think we readers ever expected, but what else would The Warden give us? She writes some of the best anti-heroes out there. Of course you aren't here to 'listen' to me wax poetic about my love of J.R. Ward or Xcor, here is what you really want to know:

The Chosen by J.R. Ward releases:
4 April, 2017

Book Description:

A scorching forbidden love threatens to tear a rift through the Black Dagger Brotherhood in 
J. R. Ward’s newest novel in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.

Xcor, leader of the Band of Bastards, convicted of treason against the Blind King, is facing a brutal interrogation and torturous death at the hands of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Yet after a life marked by cruelty and evil deeds, he accepts his soldier’s fate, his sole regret the loss of a sacred female who was never his: the Chosen Layla.

Layla alone knows the truth that will save Xcor’s life. But revealing his sacrifice and his hidden heritage will expose them both and destroy everything Layla holds dear—even her role of mother to her precious young. Torn between love and loyalty, she must summon the courage to stand up against the only family she has for the only man she will ever love. Yet even if Xcor is somehow granted a reprieve, he and Layla would have to confront a graver challenge: bridging the chasm that divides their worlds without paving the way for a future of even greater war, desolation, and death.

As a dangerous old enemy returns to Caldwell, and the identity of a new deity is revealed, nothing is certain or safe in the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, not even true love . . . or destinies that have long seemed set in stone.

A Letter from J.R. Ward:

I’m so excited for people to get a gander at THE CHOSEN! For me, the book raises the question of the “irredeemable” hero. Xcor, leader of the Band of Bastards, spearheaded an assassination attempt against Wrath, the true King of the vampires. He conspired with the glymera. He even attacked one of his own soldiers, stabbing Throe in an alley so that the male would be taken in by the Brothers. He has been a marauder and an aggressor both in the Old Country and in Caldwell, in the New World, a fighter who fell in with the Bloodletter and assumed that mantle, a mercurial, truly frightening force in the world.

Not exactly a romantic hero. Unless you’re Harley Quinn.

For Xcor to find any redemption with readers, in my opinion, two things had to happen: one, I needed to show the “why” of his journey to darkness; and two, it was important that his actions going forward be both moral and consistent. Having reach his low point- because, let’s face it, if you’re an enemy of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, and they’re keeping you in a frickin’ cave so they can kill you, you’re probably at rock bottom- the issue becomes what does Xcor do with the realizations that come with him being on death’s door.

Assuming he lives through what they do to him. 

In the end, I let Xcor do the talking. Which, considering all I can do with my writing is listen to my Rice Krispies anyway, is my SOP. (Standard Operating Position, or, also, Stupid Operator Position. Probably the latter is more appropriate.) There’s this maxim in storytelling that you need to “show” not “tell”, and it’s true, that wins the day every time- but it’s also scary as an author. Because what if a person in one of your books refuses to evolve? That’s not a bad thing if you’re talking about an antagonist, but if it’s a potential hero, you’ve got a big problem. 

Look, I fell in love with the guy by the end, okay? 

You’ll have to form your own opinion about Xcor as a person, of course, and if I did my job correctly, I believe you will share my view. I will say, in warning, that two of my friends left with his novel in their hands yesterday- and they cried in airports and on planes all the way to their respective homes. So it’s a rough book to get through in the beginning- I certainly felt that way while I was writing it. And I will tell you, I also cried at the end, just for a different reason.

I want to thank you for your support, and wish you many happy late nights of reading not just my books, but all the others that are out there! I am so very grateful that I get to do this for a living- and please, give Xcor a chance? I know I did, and he did not let me down...

*Source: J.R. Ward's Newsletter Sign up here: Newsletter

J.R. Ward is the author of over twenty novels, including those in her #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling series, The Black Dagger Brotherhood. There are more than 15 million copies of Ward’s novels in print worldwide and they have been published in 25 different countries around the world.

After graduating from law school, Ward began working in healthcare in Boston and spent many years as Chief of Staff of one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation. She lives in the south with her incredibly supportive husband and her beloved golden retriever. Writing has always been her passion and her idea of heaven is a whole day of nothing but her computer, her dog and her coffee pot.

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