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Some Girls Bite

by Chloe Neill

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Chicagoland Vampires (1)

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1,63811310,339 (3.89)32
Fantasy. Fiction. Romance. HTML:The first Chicagoland Vampires novel from New York Times bestselling author Chloe Neill.

Sure, the life of a graduate student wasn't exactly glamorous, but it was Merit's. She was doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip before he was scared away by another bloodsucker and this one decided the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.

Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she??s traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park mansion full of vamps loyal to Ethan Lord o the Manor Sullivan. Of course, as a tall, green-eyed, four-hundred-year-old vampire, he has centuries?? worth of charm, but unfortunately he expects her gratitude??and servitude. But an inconvenient sunlight allergy and Ethan??s attitude are the least of Merit's concerns. Someone's still out to get her. Her initiation into Chicago's nightlife may be the first skirmish in a war...and there wi
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Showing 1-5 of 112 (next | show all)
There is so much unnecessary bullshit in this book that caused me to drop it the first time right at the start but I decided to try again as I see it mentioned regularly as a good example for many things in reviews about other UF books.
The last time I was too riled up to write down anything at all but this time I will abandon my usual goal to provide a resource for people that try to decide if they want to read the book and write down exactly what frustrated me so much about it.

To me, her instant attraction towards Ethan appeared quite unnatural and I would've been fine with that if the supernatural vampire element played a role in it but that is not the case according to her even though she wanted that to be true to have an excuse at first. I don't understand this decision. The author could've left it open to interpretation instead but she explicitly excludes it as a possible factor.

This book has the annoying habit of making arbitrary rules up that people then somehow need to follow without any possible explanation.
Guns to start with. The whole guns have no honour speel was just ridiculous.
There is no possible justification for century-old creatures to be naive enough to somehow think that anyone would actually honour a rule like that if something important is on the line. Not arming yourself with appropriate weapons is gross negligence at best.
The only reason for that entire farce was that the author wanted sword fights because they are badass but she apparently couldn't come up with a better excuse than this.

While this is technically not a flaw it's something I am tired of reading, namely daddy issues. "He doesn't love me but only exploits me for his own ends and I know it but deep down I want him to love me and I still hope he will show affection eventually sob sob." Yea, I know daddy and momy issues like that are a real thing that is sadly not that rare but it's an incredibly overused troped nontheless. It just got old many years ago especially if it is explored so shallowly like in this book.

Later on, there is this whole favour thing that made me want to hit my head against my desk.
They are telepathically negotiating a trade and she slips up in her thoughts and now is supposedly bound to some kind of favour? The author even states that favours in the vampire world are enforced with "steel" so there isn't some magical vampire bind they can't resist or something. She could've just said "no, wait. You know that isn't what I mean. I will not acknowledge out loud that any such trade was agreed upon. Give me a fair deal or no deal." It's such bullshit it infuriates me to no end and was one of the reasons I dropped the book the first time around. Please at least try to come up with slightly better reasons to force your characters into the position you need for your plot. This is just pathetic.
The supposed political implication Ethan pushes for never come to fruition and it seems like the whole reason for the entire thing was a throwaway side love-interest to spice the obvious final romance outcome with some unnecessary conflict. Maybe for her to finally recognize her true feelings or to have a reason to slow down the development of the impending relationship? I am not sure. Regardless, the entire thing is incredibly cheap and unnecessary.

Furthermore, this entire bullshit charade only reinforces something that already grated on my nerves. While Merit usually seems like she has a strong character with an actual backbone, every time Ethan delivers another dick move, she at first feels betrayed and acts all wounded and pissed but ultimately lets him get away with every single shitty thing he says or does to her and eventually just starts pining after him again. It's just emotional abuse of the worst kind and the book doesn't even try to redeem him for his shit somehow. It's nauseating to read. Goddamit, is an MC with integrity really too much to ask for?

And leave me alone with this bullshit that because he is a few centuries old he doesn't understand feelings anymore. That is one of the worst tropes I've seen in all of fantasy and it's repeated constantly. Jaded, yes, ruthless, yes, uncaring, yes, too retarded to understand human feelings anymore? no. The ability to build and maintain interpersonal relationships is one of the most important skills you can have in almost every situation. There is just no way to forget something like that except if you are isolated for a very long time. Maybe the level of sincereness will shrivel to nothing over time but the insight into human nature only grows over time.

Finally, the admittedly surprising perpetrator will be left alive despite not only having murdered multiple humans consequently endangering all human-vampire relationships, no, she also planned to murder the heads of the other old houses and she will just be left to plot another day? Really? This is so absurd the only possible explanation I can come up with is that these old vampires are all secretly suicidal but are too prideful to end themselves. Yes, the perpetrator just being a henchman for the boss and the boss being another henchman for the bossboss in the next book (or even just the classical puppet master overlord that never gets caught) is a pretty rundown trope by now but even that would've been better than this crap. Yea, those are unoriginal but at least they make sense, unlike this mental gymnastics accident.

This all sounds incredibly negative and those are quite a few pretty big flaws but it wasn't all bad.

The writing itself flowed nicely and felt pleasant to read and the world is pretty interesting.
The only story I've read with a more believably crafted world at the brink of supernaturals going public was Kitty and the Midnight Hour.
While there wasn't enough time to actually explore much depth for most of the characters they felt like real human (or nonhuman) beings.
Except for the admittedly pretty big caveats above, I quite liked the MC. How she struggled to adapt to her new reality and eventually succeeded felt very natural. The author demonstrates that she is able to build complex and nuanced mental landscapes and form actually admirably sharp arguments and critical thinking when the mood strikes her which makes these extremely crude usages of plot devices even more tragic.

I am convinced the author has the potential to write on a much higher level than this but when you can land international bestsellers with this level of polish why try. I can't even really be mad about it considering how incredibly successful this series apparently was. Supply and demand and all that. ( )
  omission | Oct 19, 2023 |
You know... I really didn't think I would like this. I did. I read the series straight through until I felt like the characters were getting cardboard and forgettable and dropped it. Took a number of books for it to get there.

Not bad. ( )
  lyrrael | Aug 3, 2023 |
Love the book. will definitely continue with the series. Merit is a wisecrack. she is hilarious at times. As always with those kind of books, there is at least 1 guy in the picture. I am still not sure what to think of Ethan Sullivan. He certainly seems to have presence. We will see. ( )
  Ivy_Skye | Apr 5, 2023 |
I came across this series while re-shelving books at work one day back in December. I cut my reading teeth on Bram Stoker’s Dracula many moons ago and am always drawn to vampire books. Not that I read many of them these days, but Dracula remains one of my favorite books and I re-read it every couple years. Salem’s Lot is another great vampire story. I enjoyed An Interview with a Vampire when Anne Rice was all the rage. More recently I even gave The Twilight series a try, but stopped after the first book. I’m just not a fan of the romantic and/or blatantly sexual vampire story. I like my vampires to be mean and horrific, perhaps a teensey bit sympathetic, but not over-sexed lover boys (or girls) who ooze sexual tension all over the place and exist in a world that lacks a philosophical framework for their existence.

The bookstore where I work shelves Some Girls Bite in the sci-fi/fantasy section, others may shelve it in romance as its often categorized as paranormal romance. What caught my eye was the Chicago setting and I added it to the books-to-read-list in my mind. My memory was jarred last week when I saw it again on display at my public library. I put aside my misgivings about the “smokin’-hot sexual tension” one reviewer praised on the back of the book and took it home.

The book starts with an interesting buzz: a graduate student of English, Merit, is attacked by a vampire while walking across campus late one night. Her original attacker is scared away by Ethan, a kinder, gentler vampire who is the Master of the second oldest vampire house, Cadogen House. Merit is offered the opportunity to become a member of Cadogen House, but she’d have to swear eternal obedience not only to Cadogen House but also specifically to Ethan as her new Lord and Master. Ethan is “smokin’ hot” but he’s arrogant and may have had a secret agenda for turning her into a vampire. Is he a good guy or a bad guy? Even if he is good can Merit stomach swearing absolute obedience to some guy she’s supposed to consider her Master? He saved her life by making her an undead. But most vampires are “made” only after giving their consent. But he didn’t have time to get her consent; he had to save her life. But why did he happen to be in Wicker Park at the University of Chicago campus at the exact moment Merit was attacked when his house is in Hyde Park? Does it have anything to do with her father’s connections? Merit is pretty much estranged from her father, but daddy is a big wig in Chicago. We don’t find out the answer to these questions; at least not in book one.

The Chicagoland Vampires are the first in the country to “come out” and make their existence known to humans. Eight months before Merit is turned into a vampire, Celina Desaulniers, the smokin’ hot she-vamp master of the oldest and most powerful house, Navarre House, held a press conference to announce the existence of vampires. After months of panic the humans are settling down. The mayor even has a liaison officer to keep the lines of communication open between the vampires and other supernatural populations. What humans don’t know is that not all vampires are nicely tucked into official Houses that control their vampire natures. There are also rogue vampires who swear no allegiance to a house. Ethan thinks Merit may have been attacked by a rogue vampire and two more women also die around the time of Merit’s attack. The two victims look very similar to Merit. It seems Chicago has a vampire serial killer on their hands.

Merit struggles to come to terms with the loss of her life as a graduate student, her new vampire identity, and has just days to decide if she’ll swear eternal loyalty to Cadogen House and Ethan. She has the support of her best friend and roommate, Mallory, her grandfather, and a couple of new friends as well. She also has to learn about vampire culture, get trained in the art of vampire sword fighting and using her new powers. On top of all that, Merit has to deal with the sexual heat created by all the “smokin’ hot” vampire boys. Meanwhile, the serial killer is out there, the rogue vampires are feeling left out, the vampire Houses are starting to bicker and the other supernaturals in the city—wizards, shape shifters, water nymphs—are buzzing with tension.

I recommend Some Girls Bite to fans of paranormal romance. The Chicagoland Vampires novels are a series that Twilight fans can grow into. Hardcore vampire fans who prefer more traditional horror probably won't be interested unless they want to check it out for the Chicago location. I should add that the only other paranormal romance or romance novel that I've ever read was Nalini Singh's Angels' Blood
(recommended by a friend who's an expert in romance books) which seemed to be more suspense/urban fantasy than romance, even it if is shelved in the romance section at my bookstore. Some Girls Bite was a quick, fun read, but it did drag in parts. Merit's sassy-ness spills over into bratty-ness at times and she seems rather immature for someone turning 28. I liked the world that Neill attempts to set up, but she does do more telling rather than showing at times, particularly when trying to portray tension between characters. That said, I do plan on reading the second book in the series, Friday Night Bites. The third Chicagoland Vampires Novel, Twice Bitten, is due out on July 6, 2010. Chloe Neill has a fresh voice and a fun imagination. I look forward to seeing how she'll develop as a storyteller. ( )
  Chris.Wolak | Oct 13, 2022 |
Some Girls Bite
By Chloe Neill
Chicagoland Vampires #1

I have read so many paranormal romance and vampire books that my choices are starting to be limited for new authors and series. Unfortunately, I think I have read most of the extraordinary series and have been left with authors who have no real talent or ideas of their own but have decided to take advantage of the popularity of the genre just to make a few bucks. This might be one of those authors.

This book wasn’t all bad. In fact, I saw enough potential in it that I bought the second book to see where the story was going but was sorely disappointed in the end. I liked how vampires had just announced themselves to the world and that they had an organized governing system but, of course, that seems to be in a lot of vampire books - vampires have some sort of vampire council made up of old and powerful vampires who are out of touch with humans so they make antiquated decisions. I liked that there were other non-human beings like shifters, nymphs and sorcerers and I liked the secondary characters who were a lot more interesting and had a lot better personalities than the protagonist, Merit.

I struggled reading the book because, like I mentioned above, the main character, Merit, had no personality. I abhor when authors try to create a strong female personality by making her petulant and argumentative. Not only was Merit testy but she was also immature and only worried about her own needs. She was on the verge of turning 28 years old but she talked and thought like she was in her teens. One of the things that drove me nuts was the way she referred to men and women as “boys and girls”. The first few times she did this, I thought it was a joke or something she did to be cute but it was consistent throughout the book. She also referred to Ethan as being a “good kisser” something a teenager would say. It was annoying!

The biggest problem I had with this book was Ethan…or maybe not Ethan himself but Merit’s obsession with him. She reminds me of an unpopular girl in high school who has a crush on the quarterback just because he is cute and popular. The kind of girl who does his homework and lets him treat her like he doesn’t know her in front of his friends just because he smiles at her when no one is looking and says she’s pretty once in a while. She is attracted to him and wants him even though he is a jerk who puts his self-interests before her at every turn. I’m not talking about the typical hold-myself-back-from-her-because-it’s-best-for-her thing that we see a lot in romance books, I’m talking outright being an outright dickwad. Ethan asks Merit to be his mistress or consort in front of his current mistress, Amber, which I thought was tacky and uncouth. He basically tells Merit in front of Amber that Amber is disposable because he is more attracted to Merit but he makes sure to let her know that he doesn’t want to be attracted to her since she is lacking somehow. He hates her fashion sense and her disrespectful attitude but then again, so do I. Merit walks in on him doggy-styling Amber and when he sees her, he speaks to her in her head telepathically while still going at it with Amber. He’s a pig! But Merit still has the hots for him even though she keeps denying it. She’s pathetic.

The plot was predictable and unimaginative but I thought maybe the author made Merit like this on purpose and is going to show character growth in future books of the series. I mean, the series has at least 13 books so someone must have liked them…Right? But I’ve hoped for this before from another series, Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter by Laurell K. Hamilton. I read the series for way too long, hoping for the main character to become more likeable but instead she developed into a narcissistic sex-addicted sociopath. I hope this author doesn’t go that route.

www.paranormalromanceslut.com ( )
  dragonlion | Jul 30, 2022 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Neill, ChloeAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Guarnieri, AnnaritaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Holloway, CynthiaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"It is better to be hated for what you are,
than to be loved for what you are not." —André Gide
First words
Early April
Chicago, Illinois

At first, I wondered if it was karmic punishment. I'd sneered at the fancy vampires, and as some kind of cosmic retribution, I'd been made one. Vampire. Predator. Initiate into one of the oldest of the twelve vampire Houses in the United States.
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Fantasy. Fiction. Romance. HTML:The first Chicagoland Vampires novel from New York Times bestselling author Chloe Neill.

Sure, the life of a graduate student wasn't exactly glamorous, but it was Merit's. She was doing fine until a rogue vampire attacked her. But he only got a sip before he was scared away by another bloodsucker and this one decided the best way to save her life was to make her the walking undead.

Turns out her savior was the master vampire of Cadogan House. Now she??s traded sweating over her thesis for learning to fit in at a Hyde Park mansion full of vamps loyal to Ethan Lord o the Manor Sullivan. Of course, as a tall, green-eyed, four-hundred-year-old vampire, he has centuries?? worth of charm, but unfortunately he expects her gratitude??and servitude. But an inconvenient sunlight allergy and Ethan??s attitude are the least of Merit's concerns. Someone's still out to get her. Her initiation into Chicago's nightlife may be the first skirmish in a war...and there wi

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