Friday Night Bites (Chicagoland Vampires Series #2)

Friday Night Bites - Chloe Neill Most paranormal genre-d fans will remember their first paranormal book that introduced them to the genre. More than likely, this first book read is a book loved, and it will have paved the way for them to immerse themselves into this big, bright world of supernaturals. I know I remember mine. Mine was Bitten by Kelley Armstrong, and, my God, did I love that fucking book. To this day, I can still remember being immersed in its telling during my American history class in high school. I can also remember even earlier than that when I was fifteen and read my first supernatural book ever, The Interview with the Vampire by Ann Rice. Of course, that book was in a totally different genre all together, but I can remember thinking, “this world of vampires is amazing… and I must devour more.” Ann Rice did it in for me and Kelley Armstrong cemented my love for the paranormal romance genre (or urban fantasy or paranormal fantasy… however you want to classify it).However, most paranormal genre-d fans will also be able to tell you at what point they realized that this genre is packed full of the same-old same-old. For me, it was when, after devouring everything I could in this world, everything from the Sookie Stackhouse Series to Twilight, I found myself in the middle of Narcissus in Chains by Laurell K Hamilton and thought, “W… T…F?” It all fell apart for me there. The genre had lost its charm.With this realisation that the genre has lost its gripping fingers on my mind, I had to just throw up my hands and think, “I pretty much have read it all.” And today, that is the sad, unfortunate reality of this genre for me. There isn’t anything new happening in paranormal; there isn’t anything I haven’t read (especially after reading the Anita Blake series – I mean, really, WTF?).With that in mind, I now have to look at books I read within this genre with a different light. Before, I would base my enjoyment upon whether or not the book surprised me, whether or not the book could pull me into its plot and twist my mind and make me think, “That… was fucking awesome!” I cannot do that anymore because I become grossly disappointed.To reiterate, I have pretty much read it all.Now, I must base my enjoyment of said book on a more “professional” level. Did I think the characters were fully fleshed out? Was the plot engaging and full and enjoyable? Did it keep my interest? Did I think the characters made decisions based upon who the characters were? I have to ask these questions now to judge if the book I’ve just read is good… The time when I could post a review and just say “that was fucking amazing” and feel confident that my four word announcement was all that was needed to be said is now behind me.It’s a sad realisation. How I miss the time when things were simple.With that being said, I had to approach Friday Night Bites with this in mind. Did the book wow me? No… but it was still a pretty great read.What I really like about this series thus far is that the story line and plot are fairly sound. Neill doesn’t throw in anything that is too over the top and as a result, the plot feels solid, almost as if it could very well fit it within my own reality of the world. The plot also flows along nicely with the right amount of push and pull.I think the strongest aspect of the series is actually Merit. She has a very confused voice about her. I quite enjoyed watching Merit mature and coming to grips with who she really is. This transformation is really important, and I think it’s going to pave the way for really great future development. I get to see this character grow. I usually find that when I grow with the character, that leads to a much more enjoyable book read for me even if it does take time. As a result, I think this series could possibly turn into something that grips me for a long time. It’s certainly building up to be that way.One thing I really did appreciate, really did have to thank Neill for, was letting Merit actually end a relationship with someone she knew she couldn’t give what was needed to be given. I was so happy that Neill ended the love triangle, as it stands at the end of book two. I am tired; nay, I am fucking exhausted with this obsession of having every fucking male character in the book lusting after the main character’s vagina. It’s not brilliant. It’s not fun anymore… I need some reality. Merit was able to judge that her attraction to Morgan isn’t what it should be, and guess what she did? She ended it… it’s really not that difficult. She recognizes that she was attracted to Eric, and you know what she did? She didn’t run from it and try to push her feelings away with someone else. She ended things with Morgan and decided she will deal with her feelings for Eric as they come.It’s really not that difficult to make good decisions.Now, I do not know what happens in the series from this point on. I could be saying this now, and then have it come back to bite me on the ass two books from now. Who knows? All I care about at this point is that this book has taken a turn that not many in the genre take, and for that, I am grateful. It’s kept me interested in the book and what will happen.That pretty much sums up the book for me. Like I said, nothing about it has particularly wowed me. However, if this book had been that book, the book that brought me into the genre, would I be saying the same thing? Perhaps not…I am definitely going to read the next book, and I even plan to read past that. Hopefully, nothing will come back to bite me on the ass. We shall see.