A lot of stories rely on a character that is completely removed from their familial life. Whether it’s an orphan, someone who has been removed from their clan, or they’ve watched everything around them die and go up in flames, most good characters have nothing they can return to in their past. They either have nothing to lose, or everything. Lily in The Girl with No Name takes this one step further. This story is a literal journey of self-discovery – a girl who is unable to remember her own name, let alone her past.
I didn’t really know what to think about this story – I liked the idea of a moral private investigator with a vampire sidekick, but some of the suave present in past stories by P.N. Elrod is missing from this short tale. However, the voice of the narrative helped to bring me back to the story when I wasn’t entirely sure it was what I was in the mood for. The tone of the tale had just the right balance of cheerful self-deprecation and intrigue to keep me interested in the chief protagonist and his quick journey into re-stealing a gem for its rightful owner.
I’ve read a lot of vampire novels and a lot of werewolf novels. It’s actually incredibly difficult to pick up a paranormal fantasy book that doesn’t have some aspect of these two beings interacting. But I have never read a book on a hybrid between the two. It was refreshing to have a slightly new take on the topic, although, much of the storyline seemed slightly familiar.
This story might have only been 20 pages, but it is certainly a cute, slightly twisted story that I am going to think about for a long while. There is nothing like a short story that is going to stick with you to finish off the night. And, Vampire Weather is definitely one such story.
I honestly found this book incredibly difficult to get into. I even started reading it three times before I decided to bite the bullet, get over those first, not-so-attention-grabbing few chapters, and finish the book. Having said that, once the storyline got going, I did really want to find out how it all ended. After all, there is a psychotic necromancer running around Edgewood. But, it’s probably not a book (or even a series) that I am likely to pick up again anytime soon. Yet, it’s also not one that I am going to remove from my bookshelf.
This is a book about a book in a bookstore, which I just love saying, and writing. The poetry of such a story is kind of beautiful, and the setting of a college book store is gorgeous. Being involved in campus life can have many rewards when studying, but the idea of being able to go into a warm and secluded book store at all hours to buy, study and peruse different books is the stuff that dreams are made of. I’ve lost count of the amount of times that I have finished a book late at night, and just wished that I could run down to the shops to buy the next in the series.
This was an amazing short story – it had vampires, witches and pointless bureaucracy. The voice of Mars, the woman telling the story was strong and realistic, she’s bored with the tedium of a government job and worried about money. I love when writers pull the concerns that we all have, such as money, hobbies, careers, into a paranormal setting, like waiting for a newly turned vampire to rise.
Things went seriously wrong in Drink Deep, (although, there was a silver lining at the end) and Biting Cold is all about fixing these mistakes. Chasing down Mallory, coming to terms with Ethan’s return and just generally pursuing the personification of power gone wrong leads to an incredibly fast paced book that starts as soon as you break the spine of the book.
Neill has been brilliantly unfolding her supernatural Chicago throughout the Chicagoland Vampires series. As Merit slowly unfolds her new supernatural reality, we too are able to find out more about the world of things that go bump in the night. And in Drink Deep, Merit’s (and our) awareness of this world is expanded tenfold. This slow filtering of information and unfurling of their world slowly, but surely draws me into the reality of the world of Cadogan.
The ending of Hard Bitten shocked me in a way that no other book has – Neill did something to her main character that I have always wanted to do in my own work. The amazingly unpredictable finish to this story made me grab for the next book immediately – I just couldn’t believe that Neill would actually do that in her story. But, I digress, you’ll just have to read this book yourself to gain a true understanding of how amazingly potent and powerful a finale Hard Bitten had.