Sunday, July 24, 2011

"Hard Bitten" by Chloe Neill

Hard Bitten (Chicagoland Vampires, Book 4)From Goodreads: "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 of Cadogan House with protest signs that could turn to pitchforks at any moment. Inside its doors, things between Merit and her Master, green-eyed heartbreaker Ethan Sullivan are ... tense. But then the mayor of Chicago calls Merit and Ethan to a clandestine meeting and tells them about a violent vamp attack that has left three women missing. His message is simple: get your House in order. Or else.

Merit needs to get to the bottom of this crime, but it doesn't help that she can't tell who's on her side. So she secretly calls in a favor from someone who's tall, dark, and part of underground vamp group that may have some deep intel on the attack. Merit soon finds herself in the heady, dark heart of Chicago's supernatural society--a world full of vampires who seem too ready to fulfill the protesting human's worst fears, and a place where she'll learn that you can't be a vampire without getting a little blood on your hands..."

A few months back when I first read "Some Girls Bite" by Chloe Neill (the first book in her "Chicagoland Vampires" series) I completely fell head over heels for her leads Merit and Ethan. Merit won me over because she possessed every quality is necessary when writing a strong female character- intelligence, independence, snark, and all of that jazz- and it is obvious why Ethan won me over (sex on legs anyone? ;) ). When I read the second book in the series, "Friday Night Bites", my love of the series and of Merit and Ethan did falter a bit due to their indecisiveness, the third book in the series, "Twice Bitten", somewhat restored my faith in it and its characters once again, but this book in the series, the fourth installment of the "Chicagoland Vampires" series, fully and completely restored my faith in the series- I personally believe this book to be just as good as, if not better than, the original, "Some Girls Bite". 

In the first couple of books Ethan was overly confident, almost to a fault, and he exuded cockiness and arrogance and as much as I loved that side of him, I loved the side that he exhibited in this book even more- a gentle, caring, and almost shy side. Furthermore, I appreciated that, unlike in the previous books, Merit wasn't afraid to ask for help (or only asked for it when she really needed it). It has become evident that both characters have tremendously grown throughout this series, bettering one another, and becoming the people that they were destined to be.

Furthermore, as much as I hate an author in the moment that they rip their readers hearts out and stomp on them- usually in the last four pages of their books (*FUMES* Those last four pages of books! Just when you think that the book is going to end on a fine and dandy note you read those last four pages and everything goes to hell in a handbasket), I do come to appreciate them after the shock factor has worn off and I have had time to process everything. I think that it was very brave of Chloe to have written the ending that she did- she had to have known that in doing so she was going to turn a whole lot of readers off, but she still went through with it. I have read a number of reviews where some of those angered by the ending have questioned how Chloe can fix the ending of this book because everything seems so 'Final', but I personally find it to be anything but. I do have complete faith that Chloe will be able to resolve everything/ wrap everything up nicely with a big pretty bow in the next book of this series, "Drink Deep".

Rating: 10/10

Memorable lines from this book: 

"What am I doing?" 
 He smiled just a little- a tease of a smile. "Procrastinating," he said. "Avoiding the inevitability of you and me" (pg. 46). 

"Maybe I'm getting better at this?" he asked. "Better at wooing you in the manner in which you should be wooed?" 
I crossed one leg over the other and met his gaze. "My job is to ensure the security of this House. Ensuring the sanity of its Master seemed like a good start." 
"Is that the story you're sticking with?" 
"That's my answer."
"I don't buy it" (pg. 144). 

"His voice was just more than a whisper, but the sentiment was strong enough that I had to look away, tears brimming in my eyes. It was a legitimate question- but not one for which I had an easy answer. What would it take for me to believe in Ethan again? To believe that he'd chosen my, for better or worse, and regardless of the politics?" (pg. 283).

"But the words he said broke my heart into a million pieces" (pg. 335).



  1. YAY!!!! So glad you loved this one too! I thought Chloe's decision for the ending of this one was extremely brave as well knowing she was going to infuriate and sadden her entire reading base, but I'm holding out hope that she's going to remedy it moving forward and it was just something that had to happen in order to get Merit where she needs to go. Can't wait for Drink Deep!

  2. I still need to read this series! I so fail. Loved the wooing quote. So good. :)

  3. This one sounds promising. I don't read much from this genre, but I have come across a few gems that I have enjoyed. I'll have to keep this one in mind. Thanks.

    ... visiting via Cym Lowell's review party again.

  4. I haven't read this series before, but it sound interesting. Though it does sound more like one of those books I'd rather buy after the entire series has been published so that I don't end up all angry.


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