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4.4 out of 5 stars
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4.4 out of 5 stars
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VINE VOICEon 6 July 2011
I was a little disappointed with this one. Not a lot of action but a HUGE amount of vampire politics. I got slightly bored. One plot strand seemed like a reworking of a True Blood theme. I would have enjoyed more exploration of the other supernatural characters like the weres and fae. The surprise late in the story felt more like the author hearing the kerching of the cash drawer- why tie down heroine with long term love prospect in a series that the author presumably wants to run and run. Whatever, it meant a rather downbeat damp squib ending.In short this book doesn't move the plot on. I won't be as hungry for the next book. And Merit continually talking like a teenager rather than the academic she is supposed to be doesn't work for me either
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on 25 June 2011
Firstly, I do like this series and will be purchasing the next book (if only to find out what happens next). However, I'm not sure if this is supposed to be a YA series. In all the books I've found some of the language between the girls to be pretty juvenile, particularly Mallory and Merit, but it was especially irritating in this book. There are a few references to Buffy in the books and I guess the author is trying to emulate that style, but I don't recall Buffy continuing to talk to her friends in this juvenile way by the time she left high school. That apart, I also found the tying up of all the loose ends at the end of the book a bit too pat and very fast. As others have already said, there is a bit of a shock at the end and it seems that the author was more focussed on that than tying up the rest of the story in a more believeable way. The way that the book ended does mean that I want to know what happens next (and hopefully Merit will grow up a bit in the next book). I just hope that the author's 'nod' to Buffy doesn't means she's going to copy the obvious storyline from the Buffy series.
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on 4 July 2011
well that's what it felt like. i too gave my kindle a good shake. Re-read three times and still didn't quite believe until i reached final page. If you need a reader, proof reader, whatever, ms neill and it means me getting my mitts on the next in this brilliant series please please bear me in mind! Excellent !
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on 12 June 2011
hard bitten is no. 4 in the series. couldn't wait till it was released. enjoyed it so much. something happens in it that exactly made me cry!! brill book as is all the series. if you like vampire books you'll love this. go ahead and buy you won't be disappointed. can't wait for book 5!
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on 31 July 2012
**WARNING: CONTAINS SPOILERS**

Damn! Did anybody else cry at the end of this one? Please tell me you did so I don't feel like such a wuss.

How the hell can the author do this to us?

She builds up this character, completely turns him around from arrogant A-hole to something a female might feel an urge to believe in ... and then she steals him away.

I'm shocked and appalled and shocked and sad ... and I have no frickin' idea what the fudge to expect next in the books.

Yes, the relationship between the two of them was not the crux of the series but it was what drove so much of it forward and I have to wonder how big a role Ethan played in the why of readers returning book after book-because, I for one was just as interested in their development as I was in plot development.

I'm gutted.

Absolutely gutted.

Damn!

I'll read on, though, simply because I have to see how this story can be pulled back with one of its main attractions missing.

Series suicide? Or a very clever move? I'll let you know.
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on 7 May 2011
I am a huge fan of the Chicagoland Vampire series and was literally counting down the days till the release of this book. So I'm a little disappointed with what I got after the roller-coaster that was Twice Bitten.

The book starts off well enough with murder and mayhem caused by underground vampire raves which Merit is left to investigate after an ultimatum from the Mayor. Things get a little bit more complicated when the Greenwich Presidium roll into town and Merit has to conduct her investigation under the radar. To me the tone of the book is different from the others, this one had some 24-esque slash Buffy moments slash True Blood moments - not what I've come to expect from Chicagoland and to be honest I found the middle of the book kind of slow and boring. Also, the dialogue kind of bothered me - whereas before each character had their own unique tone here everyone was kind of samey and inconsistent.

There were some sweet Merit-Ethan moments, you get to know newer characters better (Jonah) and some classic Mallory dialogue.

This book is very much about Merit growing up and coming into her own, but there was just too much Merit (Shocker! How could there be too much of our fave heroine?) - I thought the book could have done with a sub plot to really flesh out the book.

The ending was a corker and the only reason I gave the book 3 stars rather than 2 stars. The last 15 - 20 pages were fast paced and had some shocking revelations - I might not agree with them all it certainly left me wanting more.

This book is definitely for Chicagoland fans and fingers crossed that Chloe Neill can rein it all back and not take it in a Buffy - Jack Bauer direction.
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on 23 May 2011
Except for the ending this is the best of the Chicagoland Vampire Novels. With the exception of the supernatural twists it storyline feels very true to life. Chicago has always had it share of drug problems so Mayor Tate put his trust in CPD to handle things when the new drug V (which full Latin name means truth) hit the street. When a triple murder makes the front papers however he turns to Ethan and Merit to investigate. Something that the GP isn't too happy about since Celina is involved and as far as the GP is concern she has dipomatic immunity among the vampire community. Merit on the other hand only cares about what is best to protect Chicago and her house and will challenge even the GP in order to do it if needed. Especially with the protesters picketing her vampire house and wanting vampires out of town and Mayor Tate threatening Ethan with jail if they can't handle things. The book mainly focus a lot of Ethan and Merit relationship as well as her relationship with her family and friends as we find Mallory has been spelled to keep things from Merit; her grandfather in charge of politics between humans and the supernatural community are being kept out of the loop by Mayor Tate and Merit learns a secret that her father been keeping from her since she became a vampire in book one. It seems only Ethan and Merit are willing to put even their very immortal lives on the line to stop Celina and her drug dealers who believe that vampires need to stop acting like 21 century wimps and begin to act again like the monsters of human nightmares they use to be.
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on 6 May 2011
This book was sensational and a complete emotional rollercoaster. If you have read the other 3 in the series and can deal with a dramatic ending then I fully recommend it. If you haven't read the other 3 in the series then this is not a book to read as a standalone.

The book is as fast paced and well written as the other 3, with some excellent plot twists, and Merits character continues to grow and develop. Ethan is suitably sorry for the events of the 3rd book, but Merit isn't going to rush back into his arms and risk having her heart broken again which leads to a lot of romantic tension.

I won't spoil it for you but the ending of the book is a big shock and possibly a big risk for the author. Of course we don't know yet what will happen in the next book, Drink Deep and I am just hoping that there is a plan that will be revealed in the next book Drink Deep.

All I can say is have tissues and chocolate at the ready and enjoy the ride!
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It's always a worry that when you start a series partway through that you really won't give it the attention it deserves, not because you can't be bothered but because you feel that you're a little out in the cold and what would have been little niggles can turn into major problems.

What happens with Chloe Neill's fourth title in the Chicagoland Vampires series is one that not only welcomes the reader but makes sure that the get a great story with a true flavour of Chicago (yeah I want a Saul's Pizza now.) Its wonderfully written, the characters were fun to hang around and all in the arc moved at a wonderful pace with enough cleverly constructed prose to keep me attached as I discovered the heart of the nefarious plot within. All in a lot of fun and when I get the time I'll be seeking out the earlier exploits to get the fuller picture.
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on 6 October 2011
The only reason I didn't love this book like all the others in the series is due to the fact that I didn't like the amount of vampire politics, even though it is extremely intresting how Neill has developed a world full of laws and controversy in which her charecter can live and grow in I do feel there is the tiniest bit too much crammed inside the book.(Spoiler alert!!!)The Merit-Jonah relationship could have I thought been expanded on a little more than it was in this book but im extremely glad there is a fifth book. But along with all the things I found a little lacking or too much in the book, its safe to say that I am still very much in love with the Merit-Ethan relationship, I mean he's no Mr Darcy but I was one of those girls crying at the end. And again I say, Thank goodness there's a fifth book!
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