Spoilers ahead: I was looking for something new after the last fabulous Jeaniene Frost book. Found this, and since it was on sale, decided to give it ..Show More »a shot. Was sorely disappointed. Basically, it's catty girls and arrogant guys playing dress-up in a Chicago-based fraternity/sorority system. The dialogue was immature, unnecessarily snarky, and quite frankly it sounded like the author was trying to hard. The character development was weak, the arc of the plot was dull, and, even for an UF novel, some things were too fantastic (she's a super powerful novice vamp? her roommate is a super-powerful sorceress but doesn't even know it? she's offered the spot of "consort" and sentinel right off the bat?). I echo other reviewers who have been extremely annoyed with the narrator's rendition of the various voices. Even when she was reading non-dialogue, she does it in sort of a snarky, sarcastic tone. Weird. Anyway, would not recommend this book. Apparently the second and third in the series are better, but I'm not going to waste a credit or money on either.
This is the second book in the Chicagoland Vampires series. The sixth book, Biting Cold, will release in August 2012. Right now the author has 10 bo..Show More »oks on contract for this series. I enjoyed this book. This series has just been so fun and entertaining. I listened to this on audiobook, which I highly recommend, it was a very well done.
Merit is trying to finally get settled as Sentinel of Cadogan House, she's moving into the house and getting into a routine with the other Guards of the house. That is until Ethan needs her services elsewhere. Ethan has heard rumors that someone has leaked a story about vampire raves to the press and Ethan wants Merit to stop it. Then they find the Selena has been released from custody in Europe and is most likely on her way to shake things up. In an effort to make contact with the movers and shakers in Chicago Ethan asks Merit to do the one thing she vowed never to do again, reenter the elite social scene that plagued her childhood.
Merit is your typical urban fantasy heroine in some ways but not others. She has unusual powers, she is in the middle of a love triangle of sorts, and she is surrounded by supernatural power figures. The thing that sets Merit apart from other UF heroines is that to unravel the mystery throughout this story she uses something else entirely...her brain and her research skills. It was refreshing to see an urban fantasy heroine that is valued for her intelligence and actually thinks through the consequences of her actions. Don't forget that Merit is also funny, snarky, and wonderful at sarcasm.
Merit has also discovered that she is different from other vamps and this leads towards some interesting plot elements towards the end of the story.
Ethan, who was kind of stick in the mud in the first book, becomes a much more well developed character in this novel. Ethan actually has a sense of humor at points and even shows some vulnerability throughout the story. He is mostly still a mystery but we are starting to get some hint of who he really is.
We don't see a ton of Morgan in this book, he is definitely in the story but when he is he comes across as jealous and angry most of the time. This story focuses much more on Ethan. Mallory is also absent for much of the story; she's gone off to be trained in magic stuff. I missed Mallory and Merit exchanging witty dialogue, but Ethan was there to spice things up a bit.
One thing that absolutely irritated me about this book is that Neill sticks to a lot of the same description words throughout. Almost every guy Merit meets is just "so pretty". Seriously there are more pretty guys in this book than any other book I have ever read. The other thing is raised eyebrows; there is a whole dialogue of raised/quirked/lifted eyebrows in this book. I have never before read a book where eyebrows are involved so much in body language.... Okay I just had to get that out, now I feel better.
Overall this is a very fun and entertaining read. Merit does a lot of learning in this book and is as entertaining and snarky as in the first book. Merit is dealing with a lot in this book she is under emotional stress and under pressure to solve the mystery behind the rave stories. Ethan is the other big character in this book; we finally get to meet him and learn more about him. There is a great mystery woven throughout the story and it was hard to put the book down. This is a very entertaining read and fans of vampire urban fantasy will find a lot here to love. I would also recommend if you like the Night Huntress series; this series reminds a lot of that one but this series has less romance and more mystery.
I have really been enjoying this vampire/supernatural series. The explanation for vampirism seems almost more plausible than most of the paranormal fi..Show More »ction novels I have read. For example: an alteration in the DNA. They are still living, still warm, can eat food but need blood supplements, are mostly immortal with some fatal flaws.... It is a bit irritating that we are kept in the dark as to Merit's real first name. And Merit should just boot Ethan to the curb. Cynthia Holloway's narration can be a bit confusing at times as there often isn't enough variation to differentiate between characters but she still does a pretty good read. Definitely not detracting enough to take away from the story. Bottom line is that if you enjoy listening to authors like Ilona Andrews, Jim Butcher, Jennifer Estep, Carrie Vaughn, Kim Harrison, Richelle Mead, Patricia Briggs, Charlaine Harris, J. R. Rain (another really good find), and T. A. Pratt, you will probably enjoy this series as well.
I have read and listened to a lot of different vampire series and this series is definitely in my top five. The story line is wonderful, the narrator ..Show More »is excellent, and the characters are fun. I love this series and can’t wait for the next book to come out in August. I have already listened to this series a few times and will continue to do so. 5 stars.
After listening to the fourth book in the CHicagoland Vampires series I didnt know if i would be able to get through this book. But the author did a r..Show More »eally good job with this story. I thought it was smart, fun, excciting, and had the perfect ending. this is one of those books i would listen to again and i cant wait for the next book to come out in August.
I would definitely recommend the series up until this book. The narration change has completely ruined what has been one of my favorite series in year..Show More »s. Cynthia Holloway was not just truly amazing as Merit, but every single character was uniquely brought to life by her. I was dying for this release and now am struggling to even finish because it just isn't there. I 'm very sad.
IF I MAKE IT THROUGH THE BOOK IT WILL BE A MIRACLE!!! The story isn't bad but for some reason the narrator is so monotone that I can hardly pay attent..Show More »ion. She speaks softly and all of the male characters sound the same. (Gruff or tired) she sounds bored. HOPE the next book goes back to the original narrator. Being that it is an audio book this is important more energy is needed to keep the listers attention.
Being a huge fan of Chicagoland Vampire books, this book was greatly anticipated. And, it does not disappoint. The story is well thought out, the char..Show More »acters (who by now are old friends) are fun to reconnect with, the writing is crisp and strong and Ms Neill's voice becomes more clear and effective with each successive book. Sophie Eastlake's performance is SPOT-ON!! She delivers a great and masterful interpretation of the dialogue; her voices match the characters (she does a damn good Ethan) and the intonation/inflection certainly indicates that she didn't just pick this book up and start reading it out loud. The relationship between Ethan and Merit continues to evolve and Ms. Eastlake's reading of them reflects exactly that. Of course, the read is contingent on the writing and Ms. Neill is getting stronger with every book. I sure hope the next one is out soon and that Ms Eastlake is once again in the driver's seat as the performer. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!
Even though Merit, Ethan and their allies and friends are facing another earth shattering threat, I am just happy their personal life is also moving f..Show More »orward. Albeit at snail speed, but at least we are reading more than a phrase about the promised child they are supposed to have. Also at last, we have the marriage proposal from Ethan **sheesh**. Why am I talking about that instead of the potential threat from their current enemy? It is because I want some romance for once in their lives.
Apart from the first two books where the romance or the promise of one is balanced with the catastrophic fights, the series has been all about survival for the H and h and their friends. This book is no exception. It is full of action, but also a little bit of romance. This is one of my favorite series that I follow religiously. Love it.
I really do not like the actor's voice of the male characters, especially that of Ethan. It is crucial to get the hero's voice to pert.