- Series: Chicagoland Vampires (Book 12)
- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Berkley (March 1, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0451472330
- ISBN-13: 978-0451472335
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 202 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,936 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Midnight Marked: A Chicagoland Vampires Novel Paperback – March 1, 2016
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From Publishers Weekly
Neill's strong 12th Chicagoland Vampires urban fantasy (after Dark Debt) deftly builds on the heroine's actions and emotional history while introducing new complications into her personal and political worlds. It's been a year since Caroline Evelyn Merit became a vampire, and she has come into her own as Sentinel of Cadogan House, a leader in the Chicago supernatural community, and a capable and likable protagonist. Merit is en route to a Cubs game with her significant other, master vampire Ethan Sullivan, and their friends when they make an alarming discovery: the body of a shape-shifter who's clearly been murdered by a vampire, near a construct of mysterious alchemy symbols. Merit engages in alliances of varying success among Cadogan House, the other vampire houses, and the local shape-shifter packs and magic-wielders, trying to figure out whodunit, as another conflict develops from the machinations of the local criminal mastermind and his supernatural empire, the Circle. Series fans will be delighted by developments in Ethan and Merit's romance and impressed by Neill's willingness to take some narrative risks. Agent: Lucienne Diver, Knight Agency. (Mar.)\n
Praise for the Chicagoland Vampires Novels
“Wonderful entertainment.”—#1 New York Times Bestselling Author Charlaine Harris
“Neill’s Chicago is an edgier, urban Bon Temps.”—Heroes and Heartbreakers
“If you loved Nancy Drew but always wished she was an undead sword-wielding badass, Merit is your kind of girl.”—Geek Monthly
“One of my all-time-favorite vampire series.”—USA Today
“I was drawn in...from page one and kept reading far into the night.”—Julie Kenner, New York Times bestselling author of the Devil May Care novels
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Top customer reviews
Midnight Mark’s enemy kind of rolls over from Dark Debt. They definitely have more tricks up their sleeves to bring down Cadogan house and the city’s vampires in general. I noticed a much more intense, protective side of Ethan. He’s always been protective of Merit, but I thought he was on the edge of losing it a few times. As usual, this protectiveness brings trouble between the couple. It is nice to see a couple that grow throughout the series instead of just getting an HEA with no more problems. Ethan and Merit go through all the growing pains a normal couple would go through.
It was funny to see Mallory and Catcher in their new roles. It seems like they, too, are going through normal couple stuff. Very down to earth and fun. But I love that this couple also knows how to work together. Like they have one brain and just know what the other is going to do. They play a big part in Midnight Marked. Mallory and Catcher are an awesome couple. I’ve always loved them together.
Merit comes face to face with an enemy of old. It was really a struggle to see if her new vulnerability was going to be her downfall in their confrontation. I couldn’t believe that this person was still actually around. I loved how Merit was able to turn everything into a great positive for the vampires.
We see a bit of different magic in this book, so it is everyone on deck to decipher just what the team is dealing with. I loved the puzzle and how it was all put together. I don’t know why I didn’t see it coming, but our enemy brings on a surprise. I still can’t believe I didn’t see that coming.
So, the ending. Let’s just say I did get a bit weepy and mushy. It was romantic, and unexpected. I had totally forgotten about this thing between Merit and Ethan. I’m such a sucker for a bit of romance. I feel like in Urban Fantasy, the special “moments” are few, so it was really great to see this one.
We have a lot of things left in the air, and I think we only have one more book to do it in. A year is going to be a darn hard wait to see how this is all put together. The book is probably going to have to be a good 1000 pages! No wonder we have to wait so long!
Overall, I thought this was a really good addition to the series. We had mystery, suspense with some good relationship issues. There was also the need to bring all the supernatural beings together, so we got to see the werewolves and RG as well. It was an all hands on deck. Definitely a fun read!
When it looks like a vampire was responsible for the death of a shifter near Wrigley field, Merit knows there has to be more to it. When mysterious alchemical writing is also found near the body, it doesn't take long to determine that The Circle is somehow connected. What Merit and Co. have to figure out is to what purpose The Circle is connected, and ultimately what is Adrian Reed's end goal.
I really loved Dark Debt, and when I compare Midnight Marked to Dark Debt, it falls a little bit short than its predecessor. This isn't a bad thing I still enjoyed Midnight Marked more than other installments in the series, but for me Dark Debt was a really strong addition.
The good things that Chloe Neill had built up in this series are all here. Merit and Ethan continue to grow as a couple. They continue to love and fight - although now I don't fear their fights are an end to their relationship - their devotion to one another is clear, and I love seeing their interactions as they continue to grow.
I really felt like Midnight Marked had a great deal of the Merit and Mallory friendship dynamic, which is something from the earlier books that I love and was missed for a while in a few books when Mallory took a walk on the dark side, and was then awkward as they tried to rebuild their friendship to what it was. Things were really solid for them in this book.
The actual conflict between the vampires and Adrian Reed / The Circle kind of fell short for me. Steps that should have been taken in the investigation were clouded over because personal things got in the way. I love taking time out for the personal, I really do, but Ethan acting overly protective of Merit just didn't feel right. We know she can take care of herself (we've seen this for what twleve books now?), so when he goes all Alpha-male it felt, to me, like something he was "supposed" to do (kind of like a checklist). Because of situations like this, there were things clearly missed in the investigation - things I spotted from a mile away - and when they were revealed by the end, I wasn't surprised, it felt lackluster.
Something done really well in Midnight Marked was calling out the fact that all sups need to work together instead of being on opposing sides with one another. The beginning of the book (with the shifter killed by a vampire) already amps up tension between the pack and vampires again. We've seen the vampires (especially Cadogan House) get blamed for a myriad of things, and they always come out fighting with little to no help from other sups. Midnight Marked addresses this big time, and all I can say is FINALLY! But with Midnight Marked being the penultimate book in the series, I'm very interested to know how this trickles down into the next and final installment.
I feel like the last book is going to have to be about 500+ pages. I know I've been keeping a mental list of things I want to see happen in the course of the books (not assumed to happen off page), and I'm a little worried that not all those things will come to fruition on page. Chloe Neill has built up a lot of stuff (especially with certain ahem*prophecies*ahem) and over the course of the last few books they've been brought up regularly. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. Midnight Marked brings a lot of storylines full-circle. It's been a year since Merit was turned (a year since Some Girls Bite) and I liked that readers get some of the earlier mysteries put to rest so to speak.
Overall, Midnight Marked was another great addition to one of my favorite series. I love how much the characters have grown and changed. If you're a long-time reader of the series, this one cannot be missed.
Apart from the first two books where the romance or the promise of one is balanced with the catastrophic fights, the series has been all about survival for the H and h and their friends. This book is no exception. It is full of action, but also a little bit of romance. This is one of my favorite series that I follow religiously. Love it.
Most recent customer reviews
My next step is buying this series...This book so far was my favorite in this series and I can't wait till Merit and Sullivan...Read more
I listen to this series on audiobook and sometimes that makes it difficult to distinguish...Read more