Not in my House

Today’s review comes courtesy of my friend and podcast co-host, Jess. She had been bugging me and bugging me to read Chloe Neill’s Chicagoland Vampires series. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to read them, I just never seemed to have the time. My to-be-read list gets longer everyday, after all. But then she did something that sort of forced my hand into moving these books up to the front of that list.

She finagled an ARC of book seven for us to review on the podcast.

House Rules

You can tell she means business, can’t you!

Reading seven books in a week and a half can be a harrowing experience, but when those books are as good as the Chicagoland Vampires books are, it’s actually pretty easy. In a world where everyone and their dog seems to be writing about vampires, it is hard sometimes to weed out the good stuff from the bad (and there are a LOT of bad ones). Lucky for me, the Chicagoland Vampires are pretty darn good.

There are so many things that make these books great. You have Merit, the former grad student who was turned into a vamp without her consent (yes, you have to petition to become a vamp – it’s not just done willy nilly). You have Ethan Sullivan, the Master of Cadogan House, one of Chicago’s three vampire houses. The relationship between Merit and Ethan is complicated and sometimes seems to change by the hour, especially since he is the one who not only changed Merit into a vampire, but then made her Sentinel for the House, a position that demands unwavering loyalty. Merit is a no-nonsense heroine who isn’t afraid to tell it like it is a kick butt while she does it. You can’t help but like her.

The cast of characters goes on and on, but the thing that makes these books so much fun is the world that Chloe Neill creates. It’s one of those vampire societies that actually seems plausible. In addition to vampires, you have the shifters. They are not just werewolves, since they aren’t controlled by the moon and don’t just change into wolves, but they are the natural enemies to the vamps. There is a grudging alliance forming between the two groups, which is actually a beautiful thing. There are also sorcerers, fairies, and nymphs – all the major supernatural groups present and accounted for, but all with a slight twist. We spend the most time with the vampires, of course, and their society is fascinating.

These books are fun and sexy, dark and gritty, and everything in between. A must read for anyone interested in vampires that are written well.

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Stacking the Shelves

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Being sick has really crimped my blogging style. Now that everyone in my house is on the mend, I need to get back down to business!

Today I will give you a “Stacking the Shelves” post, hosted by “Tynga’s Reviews.” I might have mentioned before that I had received the first six books of the Chicagoland Vampires series by Chloe Neill as a present from my podcast co-host, Jess. Well now, thanks to her, we have received the ARC for the seventh book in the series, due out February 4th, House Rules. Now this may not be on my shelves yet, since this is an actual, physical copy and Jess still has it, but it will be shipped to me soon so I can read it and we can review it for the podcast. This is exciting!

Another book added to my shelves this past week is Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. This book looked so cute and romantic, but I never got around to reading it. Then I found out via Twitter yesterday that Stephanie Perkins was putting the ebook on sale, one day only, for $2.99. Sold! Sadly, the sale was only for Sunday. I got lucky when I saw the post about it. You can be sure that I will review it here once I finish the Chloe Neill books. Those have to take priority for the podcast.

Anyone else get some good deals over the weekend?

Stacking the Shelves

Another meme I’ve decided to embrace here on my blog is courtesy of Tynga’s Reviews, and it is called “Stacking the Shelves.” Since I obviously have no self-control where books are concerned, here’s where I will share what new books I find and add to my collection.

This week, it’s all about vampires. I managed to score, thanks to my good friend Jess, the first six books of the Chicagoland Vampires series by Chloe Neill. While I’ve never completely jumped onto the Twilight/Vampire bandwagon, I do enjoy a good vampire story if it’s done right. Jess recommended these very highly and I can’t wait to read them. Has anyone else read these? If so, what did you think?