Monday 21 November 2011

Review: Twice Bitten - Chloe Neill

Merit, Chicago's newest vampire, is learning how to play well with others. Other supernaturals, that is. Shapeshifters from across the country are convening in the Windy City, and as a gesture of peace, Master Vampire Ethan Sullivan has offered their leader a very special bodyguard: Merit. Merit is supposed to protect the Alpha, Gabriel Keene - and to spy for the vamps while she's at it. Oh, and luckily Ethan's offering some steamy, one-on-one combat training sessions to help her prepare for the mission.

Merit has to accept the assignment, even though she knows she's going to regret it. And she's not wrong. Someone is gunning for Gabriel Keene, and Merit soon finds herself in the line of fire, he'll need all the help she can get to track down the would-be assassin, but everywhere she turns there are rising tensions between supernaturals - not least between her and a certain green-eyed, centuries-old master vampire.

Chicagoland Vampires Series:
Some Girls Bite
Friday Night Bites
Twice Bitten
Hard Bitten
Drink Deep
Biting Cold
House Rules
Biting Bad
High Stakes (Novella in the Kicking It anthology)
Howling for You (Novella)
Wild Things
Blood Games
Lucky Break (Novella)
Dark Debt
Midnight Marked
Phantom Kiss (Novella)
Blade Bound
Slaying It (Novella)

Heirs of Chicagoland Series:
(Spin off set approximately 20 years on from the end of the Chicagoland Vampires series)
Wild Hunger
Wicked Hour

Visit Chloe Neill's website for more information

With shapeshifters from all over America descending on Chicago to decide their future things are about to get interesting for Merit and the rest of Cadogan House. Master vampire Ethan is keen to make an ally of Alpha Gabriel and the rest of the pack so offers Merit's services as a bodyguard. Pack politics are adding complications though and Merit soon finds herself in the middle of assassination plots against Gabriel - can she keep him safe long enough for him to accept Ethan's offer of an alliance between the vampires and shifters?

I absolutely loved Twice Bitten and Merit is fast becoming one of my favourite urban fantasy heroines. Merit was changed into a vampire against her will and it has taken her time to accept her new life but she is slowly finding her place in Cadogan House and making stronger friendships with the other vampires. She is training hard for her position of Sentinel and can definitely kick arse when required but what I love most about her is her sense of humour and the fact that she refuses to blindly jump just because Ethan tells her too. He may be the master of her house but she questions him constantly and does what she believes is right no matter what the consequences.

There were a couple of things that I felt were missing in the second book (Friday Night Bites) and I'm happy to say that Twice Bitten didn't have the same problems. We still don't see as much of Merit with her best friend Mallory as we did in Some Girls Bite but I was happy to see that they are starting to get their friendship back on track again. Mallory is still learning to use her powers but she has a lot of strength and I'm looking forward to seeing more of her abilities as the series progresses. I was also pleased that we didn't see more of the triangle between Merit, Ethan and Morgan. I'm not a big Morgan fan and I love the chemistry between Ethan and Merit so I've been routing for them from the beginning. I was very pleased to see the progression in their relationship in this instalment, I nearly jumped for joy when they finally seemed to be getting it on so I have to admit I was a bit disappointed when things between them took a turn for the worse later on.

It's hard to know what to say about Ethan, he can still come across as arrogant and there are definitely moments when I really feel like giving him a slap but we get to see a softer, more vulnerable side to him here and I love him more than ever. I really hope that he and Merit can finally start to work out their differences in the next instalment, I want to get some kind of resolution to their relationship and things towards the end of the book have left me with high hopes for them.

The plot of Twice Bitten is fast paced and full of action, I loved finding out more about the different kinds of shifters and pack politics and am very curious to see how things continue in the next book. I love the side characters from the series - Lindsey and Luc from Cadogan House, Jeff and Catcher and of course Mallory. I've already ordered my copies of Hard Bitten and Drink Deep and will be moving them right to the top of my to read pile as soon as they arrive. If you haven't started this series yet then it's one I would highly recommend, it's becoming a firm favourite of mine and you don't want to miss it.

Source: Purchased

Other Reviews:
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