Butch O'Neal is a fighter by nature. A hard-living ex-homicide cop, he's the only human ever to be allowed in the inner circle of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. And he wants to go even deeper into the vampire world-to engage in the turf war with the lessers. He's got nothing to lose. His heart belongs to a female vampire, an aristocratic beauty who's way out of his league. If he can't have Marissa, then at least he can fight side by side with the Brothers...
Fate curses him with the very thing he wants. When Butch sacrifices himself to save a civilian vampire from the slayers, he falls prey to the darkest force in the war. Left for dead, he's found by a miracle, and the Brotherhood calls on Marissa to bring him back. But even her love may not be enough to save him...
Review: I struggled with Butch and Marissa's story, for some reason. I really liked both characters, and I think that Butch has been a great addition to the Brotherhood's group since the first book, but their story just did not pull me in as much as some of the others, so far. I have been trying to figure out why this is, as Butch and Marissa sort of have this Romeo and Juliet quality to their story, which I usually love, but Marissa also comes across somewhat blandly, at times. I think, in many ways, that is probably a huge part of her story and her past, as part of the glymera, and as Wrath's former shellan, but it also makes it hard to really feel drawn to her.
Butch has been somewhat like glue to the Brotherhood. As a human, he is able to be their eyes, at times, such as during the day, or to get information that the Brotherhood could not get as easily. He has been drawn to Marissa since he saw her. He is amazed at her beauty, as well as how fragile she looks but how much strength she actually holds. He does not feel worthy of her, however, as he is a human, and he also has a dark past with his own demons. Marissa's strength plays a huge part in keeping Butch together, however, once he is dangerously injured. Marissa's strength, that is, as well as Vishous's mysterious powers.
The author's writing definitely improves with each book that I have read in this series, and I am continuously impressed with how she weaves all of the stories together, as though you are watching a series. She also brings twists and turns that tie up or create new story lines in very creative ways. Butch, who never seemed to fit in within his own family, while growing up, feels more connected to his new Brothers. In many ways, that is because he has the ability to be part of them - as well as a new ability that is somewhat of a secret weapon. Just when I think all hope is lost for Butch, there is another twist. So, just like glue keeps things together, Butch does this for the Brotherhood, and I hope he continues to do so, along with continuing to encourage Marissa to become more strong in herself, as well.