Chicagoland Vampires #11
Source: Finished copy from publisher for review
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
A vampire never gets old. But neither do his enemies. When a figure from Ethan's dark past makes a splashy debut in Chicago, Merit and her Master don't know whether he's friend or foe. But they'll have to figure out soon, because trouble is brewing in the Windy City.
At an exclusive society soiree attended by the upper echelons of the human and supernatural worlds, Merit and Ethan barely stop the assassination of a guest. When the target turns out to be a shady businessman with a criminal edge, Merit suspects a human vendetta. But the assassins have fangs....
The connections to Chicago's Houses go deeper than Merit knows, and even one wrong move could be her last....
Dark Debt, the latest in the enormously entertaining Chicagoland Vampires series, sees Merit and Ethan further settling in to a stage in their relationship fans of the series likely never thought possible after the first couple installments, the two of them butting heads to such a degree it was impressive neither ended up concussed. While the build up of their romance was delicious in its tension, there’s something infinitely satisfying about the two of them as an established pair, and their utter togetherness is on full display in this newest installment.
Established couples can sometimes be tricky in terms of reader interest, the end of the chase often signifying the end of the aforementioned will they/won’t they tension, leaving us bereft of what attracted us to them in the first place. Ms. Neill proves, however, that couples secure in their feelings for one another can continue to be every bit as interesting–and even preferable for those of us who could do with a little less drama in romantic relationships–as the couples still trying to tentatively figure one another out. There’s a certain amount of comfort in the knowledge that while whatever Merit and Ethan face externally might be a powerful threat to their general happiness and well-being, it won’t be a threat to their relationship as a whole.
Dark Debt sees that exact situation come to fruition as a figure from Ethan’s past threatens to see history repeat itself in a way that will prove disastrous to all of Chicago, and Ethan in particular. Though his Maker finds a chink or two in Merit and Ethan’s romantic armor, the two of them remain steadfast in the certainty and safety they have in one another, bringing a smile to our faces as we delight in how far the two of them have come.
One of the more intriguing aspects of this series has always been the fact that despite Ethan being a Master vampire and far more powerful than the much younger Merit, she is the one defending and protecting him, throwing herself in harm’s way to prove that badassery isn’t something reserved only for the centuries-old. Ethan, for his part, does quite a bit of protecting of his own, but he always lets Merit fight the battles she needs to fight rather than seeking to stow her safely on the sidelines. The two of them together get stronger with each installment, and it here’s hoping we get to glory in their banter and their battles for many more books to come.
This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review.
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.