Review: Midnight Marked by Chloe Neill

Midnight Marked by Chloe Neill

Title: Midnight Marked (Chicagoland Vampires, 12)
Author: Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (3rd March 2016)
Blurb:

A vampire’s grudges don’t stay dead long . . .

Merit is one of Chicago’s most skilled vampire warriors; these days, she doesn’t scare easily. But she and Master vampire Ethan have made a new and powerful enemy, and he won’t give up until he owns the Windy City.

With his last plan thwarted, he’s more determined than ever to watch Cadogan burn. Ethan has put the House’s vampires on high alert, but their enemy will stop at nothing, including pitting vampire against vampire.

In this deadly game of cat-and-mouse, the stakes are life or death – and winning might mean sacrificing everything . . .

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

MIDNIGHT MARKED by Chloe Neill is the twelfth book in her brilliant Chicagoland Vampires series. Continuing events from DARK DEBT, Merit and Ethan have to deal with the repercussions of having made a powerful new enemy who wants total control of Chicago. Having already shown his hand and been thwarted by Cadogan, he will stop at nothing to win this time.

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Review: Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop

Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop

Title: Marked in Flesh (A Novel of The Others, 4)
Author: Anne Bishop
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: ROC (10th March 2016)
Blurb:

For centuries, the Others and humans have lived side by side in uneasy peace. But when humankind oversteps its bounds, the Others will have to decide how much humanity they’re willing to tolerate – both within themselves and within their community . . .

Since the Others allied themselves with the cassandra sangue, the fragile yet powerful human blood prophets who were being exploited by their own kind, the delicate dynamic between humans and Others has changed. Some, such as Simon Wolfgard, wolf shifter and leader of the Lakeside Courtyard, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn see the new, closer companionship as beneficial – both personally and practically.

But not everyone is convinced. A group of radical humans is seeking to usurp land through a series of violent attacks on the Others. What they don’t realize is that there are older and more dangerous forces than shifters and vampires protecting the land that belongs to the Others – and those forces are willing to do whatever is necessary to protect what is theirs . . .

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

MARKED IN FLESH by Anne Bishop is the fourth book in The Others series. This book continues the story of Meg Corbyn and the residents of the Lakeside Courtyard. Unrest caused by a radical group of humans who seek to control land belonging to the Others attracts dangerous attention that could cause trouble for everyone.

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Review: Archangel’s Enigma by Nalini Singh

Archangel’s Enigma by Nalini Singh

Title: Archangel’s Enigma (A Guild Hunter Novel, 8)
Author: Nalini Singh
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (3rd September 2015)
Blurb:

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh returns to her world of fark passion and immortal power and to one of the most seductive and impenetrable heroes ever to stalk the Guild Hunter landscape . . .

Naasir is the most geral of the powerful group of vampires and angels known as the Seven, his loyalty pledged to the Archangel Raphael. When rumours surface of a plot to murder the former Archangel of Persia, now lost in the Sleep of Ancients, Nassir is dispatched to find him. For only he possesses the tracking skills required, those more common to predatory animals than to man.

Enlisted to accompany Naasir, Andromeda, a young angelic scholar with dangerous secrets, is fascinated by his nature – playful and brilliant, sensual and brutal. As they race to find the Sleeping archangel before it’s too late, Naasir will force her to question all she knows . . . and tempt her to walk into the magnificent, feral darkness of his world. But first they must survive an enemy vicious enough to shatter the greatest taboo of the angelic race and plunge the world into a screaming nightmare . . .

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

ARCHANGEL’S ENIGMA by Nalini Singh is the eighth book in her fantastic Guild Hunter series. This book follows the story of Naasir – one of the Archangel Raphael’s Seven – who Raphael asks to locate and wake a Sleeping Ancient, a task that is considered taboo. To complete this task, Naasir needs the help of Andromeda, a young angelic scholar.

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Review: Dark Debt by Chloe Neill

Dark Debt by Chloe Neill

Title: Dark Debt (Chicagoland Vampires, 11)
Author: Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (5th March 2015)
Blurb:

A vampire never gets old. But neither do his enemies. When a figure from Ethan’s dark past makes a splashy debut in Chicago, Merit and her Master don’t know whether he’s friend or foe. But they’ll have to figure it out soon, because there is trouble brewing in the Windy City.

At an exclusive society soiree attended by the upper echelons of the human and supernatural worlds, Merit and Ethan barely stop the assassination of a guest. When the target turns out to be a shady businessman with a criminal edge, Merity suspects a human vendetta. But the assassins have fangs.

The connections to Chicago’s Houses go deeper than Merit knows, and even one wrong move could be her last . . .

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

DARK DEBT is the eleventh book in Chloe Neill’s fantastic Chicagoland Vampires series. This book continues Merit’s story, as she and her Master, Ethan, get drawn into some more trouble. A figure from Ethan’s past makes a dramatic reappearance, and there is trouble brewing in Chicago that could mean problems for all the Houses.

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Review: Led Astray: The Best of Kelley Armstrong by Kelley Armstrong

Led Astray by Kelley Armstrong

Title: Led Astray: The Best of Kelley Armstrong
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Genre: Fantasy, Short Stories, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Tachyon Publications (15th September 2015)
Souce: Publisher
Blurb:

With her signature twists and turns, New York Times best-selling author Kelley Armstrong (Otherworld, Cainsville, Darkest Powers, Age of Legends) always gives a fresh spin on city-dwelling vampires, werewolves, and zombies. She is equally exciting when traveling further afield, to a post-apocalyptic fortress, a superstitious village, a supernatural brothel, and even feudal Japan.

Here is the first time that urban fantasy, young adult, mystery, and crime author Kelley Armstrong has had her stories collected from Otherworld and beyond. From humorous to heart-stopping, and including two original tales, Led Astray showcases Armstrong at her versatile best.

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

LED ASTRAY by Kelley Armstrong is a new collection of twenty-three short stories. The stories feature new and familiar characters, as well as new and familiar worlds. This collection brings together some favourite short stories from previous volumes, as well as two new pieces.

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Review: Dead Ice by Laurell K. Hamilton

Dead Ice by Laurell K. Hamilton (UK edition)

Title: Dead Ice (An Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, Novel, #24)
Author: Laurell K. Hamilton
Genre: Erotica, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Headlines (4th June 2015)
Blurb:

MY NAME IS ANITA BLAKE AND I HAVE THE HIGHEST KILL COUNT OF ANY VAMPIRE EXECUTIONER IN THE COUNTRY.

I’m a U.S. Marshal who can raise zombies with the best of them. But ever since master vampire Jean-Claude and I went public with out engagement, all I am to anyone and everyone is Jean-Claude’s fiancée.

It’s wreaking havoc with my reputation as a hard ass – to some extent. Luckily, in professional circles, I’m still the go-to expert for zombie issues. And right now, the FBI is having one hell of a zombie issue.

Someone is producing zombie porn. I’ve seen my share of freaky undead fetishes, so this shouldn’t bother me. But the women being victimised aren’t just mindless, rotting corpses. Their souls are trapped behind their eyes, signalling voodoo of the blackest kind.

It’s the sort of case that can leave a mark on a person. And my own soul may not survive unscathed . . .

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

DEAD ICE is the twenty-fourth instalment of Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter novels. Anita is dealing with the chauvinistic attitudes of those around her, since her engagement to Jean-Claude. This book also has Anita trying to track down someone who is raising zombies for porn, as well as the return of characters we haven’t seen on the page in a while.

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Review: Lover Revealed by J. R. Ward

Cover of the fourth book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood by J. R. Ward

Lover Revealed by J. R. Ward

 Title: Lover Revealed (The Black Dagger Brotherhood, 4)
Author: J. R. Ward
Genre: Erotica, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Piatkus (3rd February 2011)
Blurb:

In the Shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And there exists a secret band of brothers like no other – six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Now, an ally of the BLACK DAGGER BROTHERHOOD will face the challenge of his life and the evil of the ages.

Butch O’Neal is a fighter by nature. A hard living ex-homicide cop, he’s the only human ever 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.

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, found by a miracle, the Brotherhood calls on the beautiful vampire Marissa to bring him back, though even her love may not be enough to save him . . .

Rating: *** (3 stars)
Review:

LOVER REVEALED by J. R. Ward is the fourth book in her brilliant Black Dagger Brotherhood series. This book tells the story of Butch, the only human to fit in with the Brotherhood and know their secret, and Marissa, the former shellan of the king of the vampire race.

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Review: Lover Awakened by J. R. Ward

Lover Awakened by J. R. Ward

Title: Lover Awakened (The Black Dagger Brotherhood, 3)
Author: J. R. Ward
Genre: Erotica, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Piatkus (5th August 2010)
Blurb:

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And their exists a secret band of brothers like no other – six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Of these, Zsadist is the most terrifying member of the BLACK DAGGER BROTHERHOOD.

A former blood slave, the vampire Zsadist still bears the scars from a past filled with suffering and humiliation. Renowned for his unquenchable fury and sinister deeds, he is a savage, feared by humans and vampires alike. Anger is his only companion, and terror is his only passion – until he rescues a beautiful aristocrat from the evil Lessening Society.

Bella is instantly entranced by the seething power Zsadist possesses. But even as their desire for one another begins to overtake them both, Zsadist’s thirst for vengeance against Bella’s tormentors drives him to the brink of madness. Now, Bella must help her lover overcome the wounds of his tortured past, and find a future with her . . .

Rating: *** (3 stars)
Review:

LOVE AWAKENED is the third book in J. R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood novels. The story follows Zsadist and Bella, who was involved in a storyline in the previous book. LOVER AWAKEND continues this story, answering the questions readers are left with at the end of LOVER ETERNAL.

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Review: Vision in Silver by Anne Bishop

Vision in Silver by Anne Bishop

Title: Vision in Silver (A Novel of The Others, 3)
Author: Anne Bishop
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: ROC (3rd March 2015)
Blurb:

New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop transports readers to a “mesmerizing”* world of magic and political unrest – where the only chance at peace requires a deadly price . . .

The Others freed the cassandra sangue to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in a greater danger than ever before – both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn’s help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.

Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade temps death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon’s only hope of ending the conflict.

For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon’s doorstep . . .

*RT Book Reviews

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

VISION IN SILVER is the third book in Anne Bishop’s brilliant The Others series. In this series Bishop has moved from high fantasy to urban fantasy/paranormal romance; and she does it well. There are repercussions for the events in MURDER OF CROWS (review) which are far reaching. Meg is the only one who can help with one situation, but it means putting herself in danger something her friends oppose as it means she must put her own life at risk.

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Review: Blood Games by Chloe Neill

Blood Games by Chloe Neill (UK edition)

Title: Blood Games (A Chicagoland Vampires Novel, 10)
Author: Chloe Neill
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Gollancz Fiction (7th August 2014)
Blurb:

While Merit didn’t choose to become a vampire or Sentinel of Cadogan House, she vowed to fight for her House and its Master, and she’s managed to forge strong alliances with powerful supernaturals across Chicago. But even though Merit has had wild adventures, this may be her deadliest yet . . .

A killer is stalking Chicago, preying on humans and leaving his victims with magical souvenirs. The CPD hadn’t been able to track the assailant, and as the body count rises, the city is running out of options. Vampires and humans aren’t on great terms, but murder makes for strange bedfellows. Can Merit find the killer before she becomes a target?

Rating: *** (3 stars)
Review:

BLOOD GAMES is the tenth book in Chloe Neill’s Chicagoland Vampires series. Things have settled down a bit after the events of WILD THINGS (review), and vampires are once again seen as something cool by some humans. Someone is murdering people in a way that suggests there is a supernatural connection, and Merit finds herself investigating. Meanwhile, things are afoot in the vampire world.

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