Review: Prisoner of Night by J.R. Ward

Posted January 15, 2019 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 20 Comments

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Review: Prisoner of Night by J.R. Ward
Prisoner of Night

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Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #16.5
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Published by Piatkus
Released on January 7, 2019
Pages: 178
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
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The Delight

I enjoy perusing author emails and newsletters particularly when I get to read excerpts from future book releases, but there is a con to all the pros, waiting for that release.  I read three chapters of Prisoner of Night a few months back and I was hooked and needing to know what came next.  I pre-ordered.  There was no doubt this book was getting read as soon as I could.  The rest was worth it.


Prisoner of Night is technically the 16.5 book release in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.  I say ‘technically’ because in truth it is a standalone story set in the BDB world.  Any one who has at least read a few books in the main series can easily pick this one up and do great.  New characters and plot make this a fabulous bit of extra that packs a punch in its own right.

Ahmare is way outside her frame of reference when she takes a life- no beheads a person and brings the head along to an evil warlord type who is holding and torturing her brother until he gets what her brother owes him.  He’s willing to settle for trade.  She thinks they’re square until the sadistic slime tells her that she must recover his beloved and quickly before she will get her brother.  He tells her that she has access to his weapon, but she must bring it back along with the beloved.  The weapon turns out to be its own new complication that leaves her with a horrid choice when she grasps the full situation.

Duran has endured in that dungeon for twenty years with only thoughts of revenge to sustain him.  The female who is on a quest to save her brother is his ticket to freedom and his revenge.  A distraction like feelings for Ahmare leave him with a choice of her needs or his own.

The impossible choices this pair must make and the dire circumstances of their mission kept the suspense taunt, but set against that background is a emerging love story that had me cheering for them to find a way through an impossible mess.  Ahmare is brave and determined, but she is kind and generous.  She knows that she’s in over her head and she faces a horrible decision in the end.
I had a hunch about what was going to be unveiled as surprise twists because this is a novella and there was only so mamy answers there could be.  Knowing some of this stuff did not take away from my enjoyment of the book.  It read fast and easily, but there was depth in the characters, their romance, and in the strong plot.  It was a fully fleshed out story for all its brevity of pages.  I found myself smiling at the end after all that had come before it.

So, this was a nice side story for those who enjoy the BDB world.  It happens separate from the bigger series arc though it is not a light and breezy story.  The grit and suspense, the action and sensual heat are all there.  These newly introduced characters are as engaging as many the series has introduced.  I can definitely recommend not skipping this one or not bothering if a reader isn’t caught up on the series.

Challenges Met

COYER Winter #47
New Release #3
Literary Pickers #13 toilet

Book Recommendations



About J.R. Ward

J.R. Ward is the author of over thirty 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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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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2 years ago

Wow! This sounds pretty dark and deep, and as a JR Ward fan, I definitely need to grab this for my collection. Hugs…RO

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  ROP

Yes, it gets dark and gritty at first and has some moments later, but yes, you need this one, Ro. 🙂

Debbie Haupt
2 years ago

Great review Sophia Rose, you know I loved it too

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Debbie Haupt

I sure do. Just caught your review yesterday. 🙂

2 years ago

I have the first books inthe series but I need to read them

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Melliane

You will have a treat waiting. The first books are some of the best ones. 🙂

Laurie | Bark's Books
2 years ago

I cannot believe that it is 2019 and I still have not started this series. Yikes, it’s been in my tbr since the first one was released. Glad to hear it’s still going strong.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

LOL, it’s impossible to keep up with all the books and series that sound interesting. I figure that they’re not going anywhere so we can get to them eventually. It will be fun to read them for the first time. 🙂

Tracy Terry
2 years ago

Ah! I’m kind of put off by these .5 of a read that seem to be becoming very popular. That aside … Still not convinced its one for me. I’m glad it worked for you though.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Terry

Yes, it is a newer thing for authors to write the tweenie stories like this. I won’t say I like it in all cases, but I do like it with this series.
No worries if these aren’t your thing. 🙂

Bookworm Brandee
2 years ago

I have to admit seeing the 16.5 made me hang my head since it reinforced how far behind I am in this series. But the story sounds awesome and since I have read the first 5 books in the series, it’s one I can read NOW. 😉 Great review, Sophia.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

I always tell myself that it’s impossible to stay on top of all the releases for the series I have started so no need to hang your head.

Yes, that is what is nice about her novellas. You can read them as side stories without being totally caught up on the series and they pack a punch. 🙂

Rachel @Waves of Fiction

I really enjoyed Dearest Ivie, one of her previous novellas that was set in the BDB world, so I bet I’d like this one. I like that I don’t have to be caught up, because I’m not, lol! I’ll definitely check this one out!

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

I adored Dearest Ivie. This one isn’t as emotional like that, but it was still great. Hope you like it, Rachel. 🙂

2 years ago

I am so behind in this series. I have a lot of catching up to do.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Nadene

And they are such thumping big books, too. LOL
I am caught up on these, but I have plenty of other series that I am behind. It’s impossible to stay up on them all. 🙂

Melanie Simmons
2 years ago

I quit reading excerpts for this exact reason. I also try to avoid movie trailers if I can. Glad you enjoyed this story. I’ve gotten really far behind on this series.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

LOL, it is a marketing ploy that totally worked on me. 🙂 I need to take up your strategy about excerpts and trailers.
This is such a huge series to stay current with. I thought it was nice that she started writing these novellas that anyone who at least started the series could enjoy.

herding cats
2 years ago

Hmmm maybe this would be a good one for me. I miss this world but fell off from the second half of the original series. So maybe same world different characters would work for me.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  herding cats

I think the novella last year, Dearest Ivie, and this one are great for those who love the world, but got stuck back in the middle. These are standalones with different characters in the BDB world. Plus, good stories! 🙂