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Review: Biting Bad by Chloe Neill

September 19, 2013 2 comments

Biting Bad by Chloe Neill, UK edition

Title: Biting Bad (A Chicagoland Vampire Novel #8)
Author: Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (8th August 2013)
Blurb:

Merit has been a vampire for only a short while, but she’s already seen a lifetime’s worth of trouble. She and her Master, centuries-old Ethan Sullivan, have risked their lives time and again to save the city they love. But not all of Chicago is loving them back.

Anti-vampire riots are erupting all over town, striking vampires where it hurts the most. A splinter group armed with Molotov cocktails and deep-seated hate is intent on clearing the fanged from the Windy City come hell or high water.

Merit and her allies rush to figure out who’s behind the attacks, who will be targeted next, and whether there’s any way to stop the wanton destruction. The battle for Chicago is just beginning, and Merit is running out of time.

Rating: **** (4 stars)
Review:

BITING BAD is the eighth book in Chloe Neill’s brilliant CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRES NOVEL series. At this point Merit has been a vampire for about ten months, and is finally starting to settle into it. However, things never stay silent long in Merit’s Chicago and it isn’t long before there are riots on the streets as people want to clear Chicago of vampires.

Read more…

Top Ten Tuesday (24)

June 18, 2013 9 comments

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because they are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. They’d love to share their lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

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This weeks Top Ten topic is …

Top Ten Nine Books At The Top Of My Summer TBR List

My list includes books that are coming out between June and August, as well as books that I want to read during the summer. The list is made up of a mixture of Middle Grade, Young Adult, and Adult books. As always blurbs are taken from Goodreads.com and the release dates are according to Amazon.co.uk.

Ink (Paper Gods #1) by Amanda Sun [Goodreads]

A MAGIC MIGHTIER THAN ANY SWORD

A DESTINY THAT CAN’T BE DENIED

Katie Greene is lost in the wake of her mum’s death. Sent to Japan, she meets gorgeous but aloof artist Tomohiro, whose tough attitude intrigues and scares her. Then things get really strange. When they’re near each other, Tomohiro’s drawings start to come to life…

Soon the wrong people begin to ask questions, and Katie and Tomohiro must risk everything to protect the truth.

I’m actually currently reading this book as I managed to get a copy via NetGalley :) I think the cover is gorgeous, and the concept of the book is really interesting. It’s released in the UK on 5th July 2013.

Doll Bones by Holly Black [Goodreads]

Zach, Poppy and Alice have been friends for ever. They love playing with their action figure toys, imagining a magical world of adventure and heroism. But disaster strikes when, without warning, Zach’s father throws out all his toys, declaring he’s too old for them. Zach is furious, confused and embarrassed, deciding that the only way to cope is to stop playing . . . and stop being friends with Poppy and Alice. But one night the girls pay Zach a visit, and tell him about a series of mysterious occurrences. Poppy swears that she is now being haunted by a china doll – who claims that it is made from the ground-up bones of a murdered girl. They must return the doll to where the girl lived, and bury it. Otherwise the three children will be cursed for eternity . . .

This book is already released, and there is in fact a copy of it sitting in my TBR pile. I really liked some of Holly Black’s books so I thought I would give this one a try as it sounds quite spooky.

Affliction (Anita Blake Vampire Hunter #22) by Laurell K. Hamilton [Goodreads]

Micah is called back home by his estranged family, because his father, a county sheriff, has been attacked and is terribly injured. Anita and Nathaniel are going with him for moral support and to meet his family under very trying circumstances.

Micah has been estranged from his family for a decade, deliberately turning his back on them to protect them from the sadistic killer who once led his leopard pack. But now Micah’s father lies dying, rotting away inside from some strange ailment that has his doctors whispering about “zombie disease.”

Anita—who understands zombies better than anyone—knows there’s more to it than that. While zombies have unlovable traits, being one doesn’t cause human beings to rot in agony. She needs to solve that mystery—but now a more immediate issue is pressing: Micah’s father may have only five days to live.

I have to say I’m really looking forward to reading this Anita book. I think it will be interesting to finally know a little more about Micah’s family and actually get to see them. It’s released in the UK on 2nd July 2013.

Loki’s Wolves (The Blackwell Pages #1) by K. L. Armstrong and M. A. Marr [Goodreads]

In Viking times, Norse myths predicted the end of the world, an event called Ragnarok, that only the gods can stop. When this apocalypse happens, the gods must battle the monsters–wolves the size of the sun, serpents that span the seabeds, all bent on destroying the world.

The gods died a long time ago.

Matt Thorsen knows every Norse myth, saga, and god as if it was family history–because it is family history. Most people in the modern-day town of Blackwell, South Dakota, in fact, are direct descendants of either Thor or Loki, including Matt’s classmates Fen and Laurie Brekke.

However, knowing the legends and completely believing them are two different things. When the rune readers reveal that Ragnarok is coming and kids–led by Matt–will stand in for the gods in the final battle, he can hardly believe it. Matt, Laurie, and Fen’s lives will never be the same as they race to put together an unstoppable team to prevent the end of the world.

I already own a copy of this, but I am looking forward to diving into this. Kelley Armstrong is one of my favourite authors, and I really enjoyed Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely series so I thought it might be fun to try this book written by both of them.

Omens (Cainsville #1) by Kelley Armstrong [Goodreads]

Twenty-four-year-old Olivia Taylor Jones has the perfect life. The only daughter of a wealthy, prominent Chicago family, she has an Ivy League education, pursues volunteerism and philanthropy, and is engaged to a handsome young tech firm CEO with political ambitions.

But Olivia’s world is shattered when she learns that she’s adopted. Her real parents? Todd and Pamela Larsen, notorious serial killers serving a life sentence. When the news brings a maelstrom of unwanted publicity to her adopted family and fiancé, Olivia decides to find out the truth about the Larsens.

Olivia ends up in the small town of Cainsville, Illinois, an old and cloistered community that takes a particular interest in both Olivia and her efforts to uncover her birth parents’ past.

Aided by her mother’s former lawyer, Gabriel Walsh, Olivia focuses on the Larsens’ last crime, the one her birth mother swears will prove their innocence. But as she and Gabriel start investigating the case, Olivia finds herself drawing on abilities that have remained hidden since her childhood, gifts that make her both a valuable addition to Cainsville and deeply vulnerable to unknown enemies. Because there are darker secrets behind her new home, and powers lurking in the shadows that have their own plans for her.

As I mentioned above, I am a HUGE Kelley Armstrong fan and as she has recently finished her brilliant Women of the Otherworld series I thought I would try her new one. Oh, and I really love the cover It is released in the UK on 20th August 2013.

This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smitih [Goodreads]

If fate sent you an email, would you answer?

In This is What Happy Looks Like, Jennifer E. Smith’s new YA novel, perfect strangers Graham Larkin and Ellie O’Neill meet—albeit virtually—when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an email about his pet pig, Wilbur. In the tradition of romantic movies like “You’ve Got Mail” and “Sleepless in Seattle,” the two 17-year-olds strike up an email relationship, even though they live on opposite sides of the country and don’t even know each other’s first names.

Through a series of funny and poignant messages, Graham and Ellie make a true connection, sharing intimate details about their lives, hopes and fears. But they don’t tell each other everything; Graham doesn’t know the major secret hidden in Ellie’s family tree, and Ellie is innocently unaware that Graham is actually a world-famous teen actor living in Los Angeles.

When the location for the shoot of Graham’s new film falls through, he sees an opportunity to take their relationship from online to in-person, managing to get the production relocated to picturesque Henley, Maine, where Ellie lives. But can a star as famous as Graham have a real relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie’s mom want her to avoid the media’s spotlight at all costs?

Just as they did in The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, the hands of fate intervene in wondrous ways in this YA novel that delivers on high concept romance in lush and thoughtful prose.

I have a copy of this already sitting on my shelf just waiting to be read. I’ve heard some really good things about both the author and the book itself, so I’m interested to see if it lives up to the hype.

US cover

Biting Bad (Chicagoland Vampires #8) by Chloe Neill [Goodreads]

Merit has been a vampire for only a short while, but she’s already seen a lifetime’s worth of trouble. She and her Master, centuries-old Ethan Sullivan, have risked their lives time and again to save the city they love. But not all of Chicago is loving them back.

Anti-vampire riots are erupting all over town, striking vampires where it hurts the most. A splinter group armed with Molotov cocktails and deep-seated hate is intent on clearing the fanged from the Windy City come hell or high water.

Merit and her allies rush to figure out who’s behind the attacks, who will be targeted next, and whether there’s any way to stop the wanton destruction. The battle for Chicago is just beginning, and Merit is running out of time.

I’m really loving this series. Merit is a brilliant character, and I love the way vampires and politics are handled in this series. It comes out in the UK on 8th August 2013.

Rose Under Fire by Elizabeth Wein [Goodreads]

Rose Justice is a young American ATA pilot, delivering planes and taxiing pilots for the RAF in the UK during the summer of 1944. A budding poet who feels most alive while flying, she discovers that not all battles are fought in the air. An unforgettable journey from innocence to experience from the author of the best-selling, multi-award-nominated Code Name Verity. From the exhilaration of being the youngest pilot in the British air transport auxiliary, to the aftermath of surviving the notorious Ravensbruck women’s concentration camp, Rose’s story is one of courage in the face of adversity. Code Name Verity is shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal.

This is already out and sitting on my shelf. I loved Code Name Verity when it came out, so I’m hoping that this book will live up to my expectations!

Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #2) by Sarah J. Maas [Goodreads]

Eighteen-year-old Celaena Sardothien is bold, daring and beautiful – the perfect seductress and the greatest assassin her world has ever known. But though she won the King’s contest and became his champion, Celaena has been granted neither her liberty nor the freedom to follow her heart. The slavery of the suffocating salt mines of Endovier that scarred her past is nothing compared to a life bound to her darkest enemy, a king whose rule is so dark and evil it is near impossible to defy. Celaena faces a choice that is tearing her heart to pieces: kill in cold blood for a man she hates, or risk sentencing those she loves to death. Celaena must decide what she will fight for: survival, love or the future of a kingdom. Because an assassin cannot have it all . . . And trying to may just destroy her.

Love or loathe Celaena, she will slice open your heart with her dagger and leave you bleeding long after the last page of the highly anticipated sequel in what is undeniably THE hottest new fantasy series.

I really enjoyed Throne of Glass when it came out last year, and thought Celaena was a kick-ass character. I cannot wait to see what Mass has done with this book. I also think the cover looks gorgeous. It comes out in the UK on 15th August 2013.

I cannot believe that I have come up with a list of just nine again – sorry!

What are the top ten books on your summer TBR pile? Let me know in the comments below, or link back to your Top Ten post so I can see what makes your list.

Review: House Rules by Chloe Neill

March 29, 2013 1 comment

PLEASE BE AWARE THAT THIS REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR THE CHICAGOLAND VAMPIRE SERIES AS HOUSE RULES IS THE SEVENTH BOOK IN THAT SERIES.

House Rules by Chloe Neill

Title: House Rules (Chicagoland Vampires #7)
Author: Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (14th February 2013)
Blurb:

In a city full of vampires, trouble never sleeps. At the tender age of 27, Merit becomes a sword-wielding vampire. Since then, she’s become the protector of her House, watched Chicago nearly burn to the ground, and seen her Master fall and rise. Now she’ll see her mettle – and her metal – tested like never before.

It started with two . . . Two rogues vanishing without a trace. Someone is targeting Chicago’s vampires, and anyone could be next. With their house in peril, Merit and her Master, the centuries old Ethan Sullivan, must race to stop the disappearances. But as they untangle a web of secret alliances and ancient evils, they realise their foe is more familiar, and more powerful, than they could ever have imagined.

Rating: *** (3 stars)
Review:

House Rules is the seventh book in the Chicagoland Vampires series, and it continues Merit’s story. I think Merit is a really interesting character, not at all what you would expect to find as a main character who is a vampire.

Read more…

Review: Biting Cold by Chloe Neill

September 2, 2012 2 comments
As this is the sith book in the series it may be possible that this review will contain spoilers for previous books in the Chicagoland Vampires Novel series.
A Chicagoland Vampires Novel, #6

Biting Cold by Chloe Neill

Title: Biting Cold (A Chicagoland Vampires Novel, #6)
Author:Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (9th August 2012)
Blurb:

Turned into a vampire against her will, Merit found her way into the dark circle of Chicago’s vampire underground, where she learned there was more to supernaturals than met the eye, and more of them than the public ever imagined. And not all the secrets she learned were for sharing – among humans or inhumans.

Now Merit is on the hunt, charging across the stark American Midwest, tailing a rogue supernatural intent on stealing an ancient artefact that could unleash catasrophic evil on the world. But Merit is also the prey. An enemy of Chicagoland is hunting her, and he’ll stop at nothing to get the book for himself. No mercy allowed. No rules apply. No lives spared. The race is on.

Rating: **** (4 stars)
Review:

Biting Cold is the sixth book in Chloe Neill’s brilliant Chicagoland Vampire Novels.  We are reunited with Merit, Sentinel of  Cadogan House, and recently turned vampire. A lot has happened to Merit and her House since she became a vampire. It has been an exciting and enjoyable read. This sixth book is no different.

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Review: Drink Deep by Chloe Neill

January 27, 2012 Leave a comment
A Chicagoland Vampires Novel 5

Drink Deep by Chloe Neill, UK edition cover.

Title: Drink Deep (A Chicagoland Vampires Novel)
Author:  Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranoraml Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (10th November 2011)
Blurb:

Clouds are brewing over Cadogan House, and recently turned vampire Merit can’t tell if it’s the darkness before the dawn or the calm before the storm. With the city itself in turmoil and the state threatening to pass a paranormal registration act, things haven’t been this precarious for vampires since they came out of the closet. If only they could lay low for a bit, and let the mortals calm down.

That’s when the waters of Lake Michigan suddenly turn pitch black, and things really start getting ugly.

The mayor insists it’s nothing to worry about, but Merit knows only the darkest magic could have woven a spell powerful enough to change the very fabric of nature. She’ll have to turn to friends old and new to find out who’s behind this, and stop them before it’s too late . . .

Rating: ***** (5 stars)
Review:

This is the fifth book in Chloe Neill’s exciting Chicagoland Vampires series, and it is a very exciting read. Drink Deep starts not long after the end of Hard Bitten, the previous book in the series, with everything slowly starting to settle back into place. Unfortunately it would seem that Merit is not destined to have a quite life (but then if she was, we wouldn’t be reading about her).

Read more…

Drink Deep by Chloe Neill

December 5, 2011 Leave a comment

The next Chicagoland Vampires Novel sounds like it might be interesting . . .

Review: Hard Bitten by Chloe Neill

The 4th A Chicagoland Vampires Novel

Hard Bitten by Chloe Neill, UK edition cover.

Title: Hard Bitten (A Chicagoland Vampires Novel)
Author: Chole Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: 12th May 2011

Blurb:

Times are hard for newly minted vampire Merit. Ever since shapeshifters announced their presence to the world, humans have been rallying against supernaturals – and they’re camping outside Cadogan House with protest signs that could turn to pitchforks at any moment. Behind its doors, things between Merit and her Master, green-eyed heartbreaker Ethan Sullivan are . . . tense, to say the least. But they have to work together when the may of Chicago calls Merit and Ethan to a clandestine meeting: there’s been a violent vampire attack which has left three women missing. They mayor’s message is simple: get your house in order. Or else.

Merit needs to get to the bottom of this crime, but it’s not easy when she can’t tell who’s on her side. So she goes outside Cadogan House, secretly calling in a favour from someone who’s tall, dark and part of an underground vamp group which might be able to shed some light on this attack. It’s not long before Merit finds herself in the dark, heady heart of Chicago’s supernatural society – which seems to be full of vampires ready to fulfill the human’s worst fears. She’s about to learn that you can’t be a vampire without getting a little blood on your hands . . .

Rating: **** (4 stars)
Review:

Hard Bitten is a rip-roaring read for any vampire lover.

It is the fourth book in Neill’s A Chicagoland Vampires Novel, and continues on from the plot of Hard Bitten. Neill has managed to balance the action and the romance plots in the series brilliantly, so neither overpowers the other and at times they seamlessly merge. Neill does however follow the conventions of the Paranormal Romance genre and have a first person narrator – everything is told from Merit’s point of view, and it works because Neill resists the temptation to tell the reader too much. Neill also follows the convention that Chicago is gangland, albeit with vampires and shifters and other creatures of myth instead of the usual gangster/mobster.

Read more…

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