I'm so glad that I get such great recommendations from friends, bloggers, and coworkers, because I've been in need of books that I knew would hit a home run for me. Although I've been a bit burned out by vampires and other paranormal characters, I was pretty interested when I saw the positive feedback for Chloe Neill's Chicagoland Vampire series, starting with Some Girls Bite. Lots of people were talking about it, so I thought I should check it out.
Sure, the life of a
graduate student wasn't exactly glamorous, but it was Merit's. She was
doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip
before he was scared away by another bloodsucker-and this one decided
the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.
Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she's
traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park
mansion full of vamps loyal to Ethan "Lord o' the Manor" Sullivan. Of
course, as a tall, green-eyed, four-hundred- year-old vampire, he has
centuries' worth of charm, but unfortunately he expects her gratitude-
and servitude. But an inconvenient sunlight allergy and Ethan's attitude
are the least of her concerns. Someone is still out to get her. Her
initiation into Chicago's nightlife may be the first skirmish in a
war-and there will be blood."
Review: This book starts with a bang. Seriously. There isn't much of a lead up to the main character, Merit's, being turned into a vampire. Bam! She has been turned and has to face her new reality. Now she can no longer be the graduate student she once was; she now has to give it all up to choose a vampire "house" to belong to and how she'll fit into this whole new world that lives by night and sleeps by day.
Although we all have a general idea of the vampire world and genre, this series still grabs you. Merit is a sassy character who's not interested in being a vampire and yet has to be. Not only that, but she is somehow gifted with more talent than normal. Yes, that feels familiar to a lot of fantasy stories, but it just fits here and I found myself pretty okay with it. Also we find Merit quickly at odds against the head of the house that turned her, Ethan (I won't lie, the "E" name quickly put me in mind of Eric from another vampire series...). Their chemistry is pretty immediate, but it is filled with animosity that I expect continues over many books to come. In this first novel, their conflict is just getting started and paints Ethan as the jerk who pushes for too much, too soon.
All in all, I really enjoyed Some Girls Bite. I did feel that although the book starts with Merit's evolution into a vampire, the actual story doesn't really build up and unfold until the last 1/4 of the book. It was all right, but did take some time to pick up steam. Once it did though, it was exciting and tense. Needless to say, that also meant that the book ended with a lot left unsaid or done. I'm now eager to see what happens to Merit and to find out if Ethan is as big of a turkey as he starts off or if it's all a "front." I'm ready to keep reading to find out!
*FTC Disclosure: This review was based on a library copy of the novel.