The twelfth book from Chloe Neill’s Chicagoland Vampires series releases tomorrow. I have loved this series since Some Girls Bite and I’m always eagerly waiting to get my hands on the next book. Jesse knows, if it shows up on our doorstep, I’m not doing anything until its finished.
However, when I got my hands on Midnight Marked, I couldn’t start it right away. *sad face* The hubby and I had a sitter to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens, so of course I couldn’t skip it to read (although I almost took it with me). That probably ended up being a good thing. It ensured I had light sabers on my mind, so whenever Mallory and Merit started calling Ethan Darth Sullivan, Kylo Ren was instantly transformed into a blond viking. Then this happened.
Oh yeah, there was quite a bit of amusement, and giggling, going on. Can you really blame me? Added to this, Neill ends up with quite a literary quoting soup in Midnight Marked. I mean, she’s referencing Star Wars, Batman, Harry Potter, Hunger Games, and it all works beautifully!
If you have been following Ethan and Merit – survived Hard Bitten, played by the House Rules, made it through the Blood Games, and dealt with the Dark Debt – then you know they’ve been through quite a bit. They have survived it all, but Neill yet again does something you don’t always see – she made them unhappy. Not as a couple unhappy with an external force or has been manipulated, but with each other.
How often do we see an established power couple have a fight and things don’t always magically work out? Where their issues start to seriously affect their relationship? Where we don’t know if they’re going to be in a good place at the end?
Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as Hard Bitten, but Merit becomes justifiably unhappy with Ethan. He does something stupid. She knows it, he knows it, and he did it anyway. It puts neither of them in the right place, but its something they obviously need to work out themselves.
“Get Ethan on the right track,” Luc said. “You’ll both feel a lot better.”
“Bang his brains out,” Lindsey offered helpfully from the other side of the room.
Luc shook his head. “Apologies, Sentinel. My girlfriend is crude.”
“And you love it,” she said.
From his wide smile, I guessed she was right.
“Good luck, Sentinel,” Luc said. “Our wands are up for you.”
I didn’t think that quite sounded the way he’d meant it to.
While Merit and Ethan have some issues that need to be dealt with, and these issues have been a long time coming, their relationship is going to change. Not only their relationship as a couple, but as Master & Sentinel. But never fear, they will survive.
Every book in the Chicagoland Vampires series has been nothing but fabulous and Midnight Marked is no exception. Not only is this a book that pushes Ethan and Merit’s relationship, but it is a game changer for the series. Things happen that will mean a change for Chicago. Plus, THINGS HAPPEN! Fans will definitely be left screaming in joy, and at Neill for the next book. Speaking of which…how long do we have to wait?
There’s nothing I can’t say that I haven’t said already: the complexity Neill gives her characters never ceases to amaze me (review of Biting Cold); I am still convince that she’s an evil genius (review of Drink Deep); Neill is such a fantastic storyteller that it is so easy to get lost, and invested, in the story of her characters that no one should be able to walk away disappointed (review of Hard Bitten); she’s not afraid of pushing the boundaries (review of Hard Bitten).
Midnight Marked is out tomorrow. Go get it. If you haven’t read the Chicagoland Vampires series, go get Some Girls Bite – seriously, I love the fact that Merit wasn’t instantly gracious that Ethan saved her life by turning her into a vampire (review of Some Girls Bite). If you stopped reading at Hard Bitten, suck it up and dig into Drink Deep.
Some Girls Bite
Friday Night Bites
High Stakes (Luc & Lindsey Short Story) – part of the Kicking It Anthology
Howling For You (Jeff & Fallon novella)
Lucky Break (Ethan & Merit Novella)
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 supernatural against supernatural…
In this deadly game of cat-and-mouse, the stakes are life or death—and winning might mean sacrificing everything…