Review- Twice Bitten

Chloe Neill
Urban Fantasy
355 pages
Chicagoland Vampires #3
Chapter 1
NAL/Penguin Usa

Shapeshifters from across the country are convening in the Windy City, and as a gesture of peace, Master Vampire Ethan Sullivan has offered their leader a very special bodyguard: Merit, Chicago's newest vampire. Merit is supposed to protect the Alpha, Gabriel Keene-and to spy for the vamps while she's at it. Oh, and luckily Ethan's offering some steamy, one-on-one combat training sessions to help her prepare for the mission.

Unfortunately, someone is gunning for Gabriel, and Merit soon finds herself in the line of fire. She'll need all the help she can get to track down the would-be assassin, but everywhere she turns, there are rising tensions between supernaturals-not least between her and a certain green-eyed, centuries-old master vampire.

There were so many things about Twice Bitten that I absolutely loved --more Ethan face-time, watching Merit's kick-assery really coming on-line, and yummy shifters to name a few-- but ultimately I loved this third installment because it kinda changed everything.  It made it possible for the series to continue on in an interesting way, and I'm self-ish so this was all win.

The shifters are on the scene in a big way, and not only are the characters compelling, they're also quite well developed.  Neill had me wanting to know more more more about each of them.  Gabriel is the most present throughout the story so it's no surprise that he was my favorite. He honors and respects Merit, and I think her character really needed a little esteem from someone what wasn't merely intimidated by her position as Sentinel.  He's also one of those big tough-unbelievably powerful-guys, who's actually a big teddy bear. I really hope he's present in stories to come.

So Gabriel has called a summit to decide the future of the shifter race. Remember, only vampires have revealed themselves to the world, and the shifters are still very much in the closet {and a majority of them want to remain that way}. Add to the fact that vampires and shifters have a rich history of despising one another, and you can just imagine all the fun drama that ensues.  Aside from the story-setting tension, Shifters bring new life into the series, and readers will enjoy learning all about them.

The other biggest surprise for me in this book was the palpable emotions I incurred.  I must be honest, I never really felt all that sorry for Merit before. Sure she was turned vampire without permission, but she would have died.  I kinda wanted to tell her "get over it" a few times in the last 2 books, and besides she got these wicked skills because of it.  But the struggles that Merit endures in Twice Bitten had me nearly in tears at one point. Obviously it would be impossible to explain the circumstances without ruining the story, but I don't know of a single reader who wouldn't be effected by what Merit goes through. So yes, my attachment is very real now.

Bottom Line: I have major hopes for the layout of the rest of the series and basically Twice Bitten has made that possible. 

4.5 stars 


  1. This is definitely one of the best vampire series out there today, I think. And I agree with you about not feeling all that bad for Merit before. TWICE BITTEN made me think, well, twice about that :)

  2. Jen: LOL. Can't wait for 'Hard Bitten"

    Kristin: :)

  3. Mmmm, great review! I've been wanting this book for a while. And it sounds like I need it! Aaaghhhh, you are making my poor shelf sag! LOL!

    Great review!

  4. After reading this book, I have to say I wouldn't mind a spin off series with the shifters! I can not wait for Hard Bitten!