This is the fourth book in the Chicagoland Vampire Series by Chloe Neill and narrated by Cynthia Holloway. All of our favorites are back and once again, Merit has been placed into the role of investigator trying to keep Cadogan House clear of any blowback from supernatural shenanigans.
After the asshattery of Ethan Sullivan, the master of Cadogan House in Twice Bitten, I was happy to see that Merit hadn't simply forgiven him. Merit was making Ethan work for her forgiveness. Her simply calling him Liege, and acting with the "Grateful Condescension" at all times, is making Ethan crazy. Add in the Mayor extorting Ethan into investigating and a claim that 3 young women have died in what sounds like a Vampire rave, plus the GP showing up unannounced from England and poor Ethan is not having a good week. The topper is the GP telling Ethan that he is not to give into the demands of the Mayor and let the humans figure it out for themselves.
Merit knows that this isn't something that is just going to go away on its own. When a drug called "V" starts turning up, the stakes become even higher. As the Sentinel of Cadogan House, Merit knows that to protect her House, she needs to put a stop to it before something happens that can't be fixed. Merit ends up working closely with Jonah, the Head of the Guard for Gray House, as well with her grandfather's Ombudsman office.
This book takes us deep into Vampire Politics. Turns out its not so different from Human Politics, just much more entrenched in the past and they have longer to scheme and manipulate events. As plain spoken as Merit is, this is a world that she fights to understand and navigate. There is a shocking event towards the end of this book that I did not see coming. I was totally floored, but have faith in the world that Ms. Neill is building that I will be pleased in the end. This was a fantastic book and really a pivotal book in the series. I gave it 4 stars.
Times are hard for newly minted vampire Merit. Ever since shapeshifters announced their presence to the world, humans have been rallying against supernaturals—and they're camping outside of Cadogan House with protest signs that could turn to pitchforks at any moment. Inside its doors, things between Merit and her Master, green-eyed heartbreaker Ethan Sullivan, are tense. But then the mayor of Chicago calls Merit and Ethan to a clandestine meeting and tells them about a violent vamp attack that has left three women missing. His message is simple: get your House in order. Or else.
Merit needs to get to the bottom of this crime, but it doesn't help that she can't tell who's on her side. So she secretly calls in a favor from someone who's tall, dark, and part of an underground vamp group that may have some deep intel on the attack. Merit soon finds herself in the heady, dark heart of Chicago's supernatural society—a world full of vampires who seem to be ready to fulfill the protesting human's worst fears, and a place where she'll learn that you can't be a vampire without getting a little blood on your hands.