I think if you haven't read the previous 5 books then you are going to struggle to follow the plot of this one because the worldbuilding and plot layering have become that complex.
Lover Enshrined picks up a few months after the end of Lover Unbound. Phury has slipped further into his addiction. Cormia pretty much seems to stay in her room. The whole Brotherhood is fed up with Phury but don't really know how to deal with him. The Omega hatches his secret plan - quite cleverly referenced at the end of Lover Revealed. The Lessers go on the offensive in a big way. We find out lots more about Rehv. And the new troika of Blay, Qhuinn and JM have perhaps the best plot/sub-plot in the book.
I liked this book. For me it was a vast improvement over Lover Unbound. As I think most aspects have been covered (probably better) elsewhere. I'm going to stick to a what worked for me and what didn't format for this review.
What I liked and what worked for me:-
Phury and Cormia - I'm actually going to post about them separately as I've got quite a few things to say. :) Yep, it might be a bit of an essay.
John Matthew - I freely admit to always reading his bits first. I could have a whole list here of his awesomeness. JM & Xhex. JM and Qhuinn, JM and Tohr, JM and Cormia.
The new troika - of Blay, Qhuinn and JM. By far the most interesting secondary plot, though I am biased. I liked the whole thing of Qhuinn becoming an ahstrux nohtrum. The two characters (for me) that go on the furthest journey in this book are Lash and Qhuinn. Plus Qhuinn without doubt had all the best lines.
How are you doing?His whole meeting with Wrath is brilliantly written. Burning question - What did Qhuinn see in the Fade?
"I wish I were a smoker."...
No, you don't. You hate smoking.
"When I face the firing squad, I may rethink that hard line."
Omega and the Lessers - I think I'm in the minority of people who actually read all the Lesser bits. Mainly because you don't know when something important is going to be snuck in there. I like the insight we get into the Omega in this installment. There was also a nice tie-in to the Omega's comments to Butch at the end of Lover Revealed about how he should keep his family close.
The new leader of the Lessers is very happy to have taken out all but two of the heads of the founding families. Surely this has to be Rehv and Marissa - they are the heads of their families aren't they? And I think they'll actually be tougher to take out than the Lessers are anticipating.
Lash - It would have been so easy to make him completely evil. But I can't help feel sympathy for the character - in fact it's much easier to empathize with him in this book than it was in the previous books. I think what's going to be interesting over the upcoming books - especially as we have his POV - is how he's going to deal - is he going to accept that biology is everything and he has to be his father's son. Or is he going to be saved. And at this point I still think it's possible to save him. Burning question - why did Havers lie?
Lassiter - really not sure about him. Going to have to wait and see how he plays out in future books. I'm wary of mixing the Brother mythology with the Judeo/Christian.
Acronyms and Texting - For the most part this wasn't a problem, but there are a couple of acronyms I'd have to look up if I wanted to know what they meant. And if that sort of thing bothers you, it can interrupt the flow of the book whilst you google.
The timing of this story. This takes place a few months after the end of Lover Unbound, but really the only reason I can see for that happening is so Bella can give birth in this book. Which means Phury and Cormia's relationship stalled at the end of Lover Unbound and didn't start up again 'til we rejoin them.
What didn't work for me:-
Really I think except for the editing these are minor and in the case of Jane personal quibbles.
Jane - I have to restrain myself from putting my hands over my ears and going La La La I can't hear you whenever she enters a scene.
Product placement - why?
Editing - The number of typos and errors in this book wasn't good. I'm not going to list them here, they are mentioned on other blogs and other reviews but there were too many.
Why were the bodies left in the house? Why didn't someone remove them, if only for the hygiene problem if nothing else? And if Butch looked at the house, did his detective thing, why didn't he pick up on the clues that were waiting to be found?
How many people have to see Lash before somebody says something? Didn't any of them ever read Sherlock Holmes? Or see the movie?
Where do we go from here?
I can't help thinking Cormia (and her newfound architectural skills) might be of use to Rehv when he wants to build his new club. I'm very interested to see where the Lesser war will go from now. If the next book focuses on Rehv and the symphaths I hope it does focus on them. Unlike the vampires we know much less about their mythology and I wonder how well they'll stand up to the multi-plotlines.
Thoughts at the end. I liked the book a lot, and I think it's probably the first book after Lover Awakened that I will re-read parts of. J.R.Ward is a wonderful storyteller but even great storytelling needs a strong foundation.
I'm looking forward to Rehv's book though I haven't decided yet whether to go the hardcover route.