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review 2018-01-22 16:39
"The Veil - Devil's Isle #1" by Chloe Neill
The Veil - Chloe Neill

Somehow I managed to miss Chloe Neill's Chicagoland Vampire series, so I came to "The Veil" with no expectations other than it had been recommended by Faith Hunter, who writes the Jane Yellowrock and Soulwood series.

"The Veil" makes a promising start to Chloe Neill's new "Devil's Isle" series. The premise of the book is original and intriguing. It takes places in New Orleans seven years after the end of a war that started when "the Veil" that separates our world from the magical one was torn open by magical forces that wanted to conquer the Earth. They lost. The Veil was resealed. Nothing was the same afterwards.

I liked the complexity and plausibility of the post-war world that Chloe Neill constructed and I enjoyed how she revealed it gradually by expanding the understanding of the main character, Claire Connolly. Claire, who was in her teens when the war happened and lost her father to it, now runs the antiques store in The French Quarter that her father left her. She is trying to lead a quiet, hardworking life, honouring the memory of her father and not drawing attention to herself. Given that she has magical powers that are currently illegal and that she can't stop herself from coming to the rescue of women under threat. this turns out to be an ambition she can't fulfil.

This is a fun, light read, with likeable characters, interesting ideas and good actions scenes. It tends a little towards Young Adult in its politics-lite view of the world but it is still an entertaining read for grown-ups.

I groaned a little at how beautiful everyone had to be, especially the main male character. It didn't add anything for me except slightly clichéd romance and struck a false note amongst all the original ideas.

It works as a standalone but is mainly a set up for the series. I didn't mind that. The second book is already out and I'm looking forward to it.

I recommend this to anyone who wants some original, upbeat, urban fantasy and who doesn't mind the odd bit of eye-candy ogling along the way.

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review 2017-11-13 15:32
So this is the end...
Blade Bound: A Chicagoland Vampires Novel (Chicagoland Vampires Series) - Chloe Neill

The final novel in the series, it's Merit and Ethan's wedding and the politics are complicated and things don't always go to plan. Evil doesn't wait for people to finish parties.


Interesting and fun characters and I'm sorry to see them go but can see where it was a logical end to the arc and the story.

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review 2017-10-29 21:44
The Hunt (Devil's Isle #3) by Chloe Neill
The Hunt - Chloe Neill

Claire saved Devil’s Island and Containment in the last book. But she did it using magic and in doing so may have cost herself everything


She is now a fugitive, a magic user who, by law, should be locked up in Devil’s Isle before she becomes a dangerous wraith. And the man she loves, Liam, was infected by magic in that battle and now seems unable to even endure her presence having disappeared for weeks.


But when a government agent is killed and Liam is framed, Claire can’t afford to give him any more space. They have to clear his name, find a murderer - and uncover a plot which may change the world - again

I’m putting aside that a lot of what I wanted to see from Claire: exploring and examining her powers, more relations with the Paras, more of her work opposing Reveillon, more examination of the difference between Court and Council, more of her relations with others. I have to say I wasn’t a fan of her romance with Liam - I just don’t really see much about Liam to make me that invested in him. When we saw him in the first book he spent a huge chunk of it being hostile to Claire, then the second book there were more convoluted barriers to this book where, again, we had barriers. The thing is, I feel lots of barriers have been thrown into Claire and Liam’s relationship before they even had a relationship. So much has happened to keep them apart I’m not sure they’ve really been together - which leaves me questioning just why Claire is this invested in it and why I’m way more interested in Claire and Moses than I am Claire and Liam.


Similarly, I’m not sure about the big familial revelations about Claire… I just wonder why it’s here. Don’t we have enough motive for Claire to be involved because of the whole world ending thing? Do we need parental angst? Does every urban fantasy protagonist need to have parental angst?


Again, these are personal taste issues - none of these stories are poor. They’re not badly written. They’re not bad stories. The emotion is deep and powerful, the conflicts very real, the writing excellent and the humanity is really apparent. You can feel Claire’s pain, there’s a lot of tension, some great scenes full of action and a real sense of building epic by the end of the book.


So, yes, I am trying not to be down on this book for not being the story I wanted it to be - instead it being the good book it was.

While I can put that aside, I am somewhat disappointed by the world building development. The world building isn’t small or even flawed not by any stretch. We have a fascinating, large, deep, rich world. We have numerous paranormal races and their different factions. We have magic and the consequences of it - from both the lifeless soil patches around New Orleans to humanity confiscating and destroying everything that may even be slightly magical - including cultural and religious artefacts. But we don’t have much of it analysed - what magic means, what it can do. How the society beyond the veil actually works? The differences between Crown and Court and their history? What about the different kinds of Paranormals? I don’t even know what some of these beings are supposed to be and no-one mentions it. I mean, is it awkward? Is it rude to say “hey this is Bob, he’s a troll?” Because Claire openly refers to Seraphs and Valkyries and this doesn’t seem to be an issue? And what does Erida being a “goddess” actually mean?



<a href="http://www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2017/10/the-hunt-devils-isle-3-by-chloe-neill.html">Read More</a>




Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2017/10/the-hunt-devils-isle-3-by-chloe-neill.html
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review 2017-10-22 04:30
The Hunt (Devil's Isle, #3)
The Hunt - Chloe Neill

I needed a break from golden age mystery, and with bad back pain, I needed something that didn't require a high degree of concentration, and where there was a high probability of violence so I could vent vicariously.  Urban Fantasy to the rescue!


I generally love Chloe Neill's writing for its wit and snark almost more than for her ability to tell a good story.  Luckily she does tell a good story, because this series has less wit and snark than her Chicagoland series did.  It's not barren of humor at all, but it lacks the verbal dances Merit and Ethan and Mallory entertained me with.


Still, it's a good story line and Clair is a strong protagonist who does not engage in love triangles or damsel in distress crap.  I was able to get lost in a post apocalyptic New Orleans where magic is a thing and the author explores the 'us' vs. 'them' mentality that is so very, very prevalent today.


Good escapist reading with characters you can like and cheer for.  I could do without the book ending with a soft cliffhanger, but I girl can't have everything and I'll take soft cliffhangers over love triangles any day!

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review 2017-10-03 14:36
Review: The Hunt by Chloe Neill
The Hunt - Chloe Neill

Picking up about five weeks after the intense conclusion of the previous book, The Hunt opens with our heroine, the Sensitive Claire, in hiding with Para Moses. Unfortunately, Liam, her boyfriend who was struck by magic in that battle, went into hiding with his grandmother, Eleanor. Even though Claire refuses to ask the resistance leader Malachi about Liam, she is worried for him and misses him. However, their enemy in Containment, Jack Broussard, is dead and the top suspect is Liam. So Claire, Gavin (Liam’s brother), and Malachi head out to find Liam, risking their own safety for the good of the resistance.


Devil’s Isle is a solid urban fantasy series set in an alternate world where Paranormal beings have invaded Earth through a breach known as the Veil. The attacking Paras are of a faction that wants to overthrow the existing, peaceful faction in the Beyond. However, most humans see all Para as bad, and fight against any and all magic. The story of The Hunt relies heavily upon the preceding events; therefore, I do not recommend reading it as a standalone story or starting the series with this title.


Overall, I still enjoy Claire’s story and the battle to protect New Orleans and the Earth. However, I was disappointed with The Hunt. While I didn’t dislike the overall plot, I found I had difficulty connecting with Claire and pieces of the story. In the previous two books, I was fully engaged, because each character had much to offer. I loved the mystery surrounding Claire’s mother and the budding romance between characters. But this time around, I felt like I was just watching events unfold, rather than participating through Claire. 


The first third of The Hunt moves slowly, and I felt like we didn’t get into any real story as the trio looks for Liam. There are hints at the eventual storyline, but the interactions with the Paras at the Plantation seemed extraneous, and I felt like that whole journey could have taken a lot less book space.


Things pick up after Liam comes back into the fold, but the atmosphere of the group changed dramatically from the previous books. The group is on the run now, Liam is ice-cold, Claire can’t go back to her shop, and some of Claire’s close friends have smaller roles. These changes are all necessary as the storyline develops, but I missed the camaraderie and rapport from the earlier titles. With that said, the book starts to pick up as the group investigates who framed Liam and what the motives are behind the murder. 


As the story progresses, I found there were little things in the book that annoyed me. However, I was very disappointed in how the storyline with Claire’s mom played out. Trying to remain spoiler-free here: there is a complete lack of character development, and I found the portrayal of woman who could be Claire’s mom to be utterly one-dimensional.


While I enjoy the world-building and characters of Ms. Neill’s Devil’s Isle series, I was disappointed in this third offering. I did enjoy seeing Claire and Liam together again (albeit a short time), and I am glad that there will be more to this series. However, I found parts of the story extraneous and slow-moving, and that overall, the book was missing its heart. What I love about the series is its strong characters and close camaraderie, which seemed to take a backseat this time around.


My Rating:  C, Finished It - Liked some, didn't like some

Review copy provided by publisher/NetGalley

Originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About 

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