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“The more I read, the more I acquire, the more certain I am that I know nothing.”
― Voltaire

Friday Night Bites - Chloe Neill Giving it another read before I comment.Oddly, I disliked it more on the second read then on the first. Probably a 2.5 star book for me. Roughly the first 200 pages are a breezy, snarky romp through Chicago vampireland. Merit takes a dance class with her roommate (snarky comments on Barbie instructor's jazz hands), moves into Cadogan house (J Crew catalog forwarded from her old address), learns to guard Cadogan house (life-size poster of Morgan appears in her room), attends a party at an ex-boyfriend's house as part of Ethan's maneuverings and has a reunion with her father, and trains with Catcher (snarky comments about he and Mallory's sex life). In between lots of eating, a little mourning about her old life and flirting with Ethan. Then at close to page 200, the story buckles down and starts to develop tension. Merit and Mallory fight, which leads to tension with Merit and Catcher. She attends another family party, is hit on by the mayor who seems to otherwise dislike vamps, and is accused by the ex-boyfriend of threatening his brother. The ex threatens to expose everyone to the paper, including information about unauthorized vampire raves. He knows details that can only have been provided by an insider, which means Ethan has been betrayed again. As the investigation into the brother continues, Merit decides he's a were, which threatens to escalate were-vamp violence. Then, in the last 50 pages, she exposes and fights with the traitor, breaks up with Morgan, fights with Celina, once again attacks Ethan, gets knocked out by Mallory's witchy skills, and goes through the change a second time. To say this book has pacing issues is an understatement. In retrospect, what is interesting about this from the urban fantasy perspective, is that very little of it is 'supernatural.' It's a book that wants to be chick-lit, but centers around vampires instead of, oh, models, or New York women. Oh, and the vampires get silvery eyes when they are turning vampy, which is probably better than sparkles. The book is mostly about Merit continuing to adjust to the idea of being a vampire, but most of what that means is stereotypical (needs to drink blood, sleep during the day, is faster than humans and will live a very long time) placed into context of the ordinary. She eats a lot. Gossips with other vamps about Ethan. Dates Morgan. Has gal-pal conversations with Mallory. Oh, and no longer is her Chucks-and-glasses wearing bookish grad student self, instead wearing designer gowns and strappy heels. Continues to fret about Ethan, before and after kissing him. The mystery here is so-so, with uneven tension and pacing. The vamps are basically people that drink blood and have sun allergies, so as far as fantasy or world-building goes, it's mediocre. As chick lit, it's probably a "B," with fun dialogue and a good sense of the heroine's lifestyle.