Friday, February 15, 2013

Review: Friday Night Bites by Chloe Neil

Friday Night Bites 
By Chloe Neill 
Chicagoland Vampire Series #2
Urban Fantasy

The story of a young heiress's initiation into the dark society of the Chicagoland Vampires continues...

Ten months after vampires revealed their existence to the mortals of Chicago, they're enjoying a celebrity status usually reserved for the Hollywood elite. But should people learn about the Raves-mass feeding parties where vampires round up humans like cattle-the citizens will start sharpening their stakes.

So now it's up to the new vampire Merit to reconnect with her upper class family and act as liaison between humans and bloodsuckers, and keep the more unsavory aspects of the vampire lifestyle out of the media. But someone doesn't want peace between them-someone with an ancient grudge...

Friday Night Bites takes place about two weeks after the conclusion of Some Girls Bite; Merit is making plans to move into the Cadogan house, and the vampire community itself has gained a certain level of celebrity. There is word the shifter pack leader Gabriel Keene intends to hold a shapeshifters conference in Chicago, and there are also rumors that the Chicago World Weekly, and Jamie Breckenridge in particular, is taking a particular interest in the underground vampire raves (flash mobs of sorts that meet and mass feed). In order to quell any unsavory press and understand Jamie’s motive, Ethan asks Merit to return to her family and their high society connections. As Merit and Ethan hobnob with Chicago’s high society, a boyfriend from Merit’s past brings new trouble for the vampire community. Merit’s allegiances, strength, and willpower continue to be tested as human-supernatural relationship become increasingly tense and tenuous.

Merit finally makes the move into Cadogan House and attempts to adapt to the vampire world and those she’s been charged to protect as Sentinel. The new crisis involves the family of her old boyfriend, Nick Breckenridge, whose brother Jamie is rumored to be developing a story about suspected vampire raves. Merit has to reenter her family’s high society world to find a way to stop this before it gets started, disrupting the strange détente the vamps have achieved with humans. She’s also continuing to see Morgan, the Master of the Navarre House, at his demand and Ethan’s encouragement, even as she’s still trying to figure out her feelings for Ethan.

Ethan continues to send mixed signals about his feelings for Merit. One minute he’s demanding subservience and the next he’s transmitting lust. She, on the other hand, is trying her best to find that balance between staying true to her nature and being a Sentinel and acknowledging Ethan as her master (good luck with that). Morgan certainly complicates matters and no one seems to want to give her the time to sort it all out on her own. As in the first book, not everyone is who they seem to be and there is another traitor in Ethan’s house. Celine still is a threat even after having been exiled to Europe. Merit also is getting stronger and developing new skills as she works to reconcile her human self with her vamp.

The jury is still out for me with Ethan and Merit is doing the right thing by proceeding with caution. She’s making him prove himself and of course he finds it frustrating. The world created here is an interesting one with humans having awareness of some supernaturals but not a clue about others (shifters, water nymphs, sorcerers). You can sense an undercurrent of things reaching a spilling point and that tension creates intrigue. There’s an exciting climax that was pretty extraordinary, making me fly right into the next book. A lot of my questions from the first book were answered here only to create new situations and mysteries. This isn’t a series where you can read one book and move onto something else and come back to it. I’m jumping into the next book right away. Stay tuned.

Series Reading Order:
Some Girls Bite - Review
Friday Night Bites
Twice Bitten
Hard Bitten - Review
Drink Deep - Review
Biting Cold - Review
House Rules - Review Coming Soon
Biting Bad - Releases August 6th


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