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June 9, 2014

Suped Up: Arcadia Bell Series by Jenn Bennett

Jenn Bennett
Pocket Books
Urban Fantasy
2011-2014
Quotable Quotes:

"Passion without joy is so draining." -David, Kindling Moon

"My dear, if the good Lord has helped me resist temptation this long, I assure you that your Mrs. Marsh would not be the thing to send me over the edge." -Father Carrow, Kindling Moon

"Tell Foxglove 'Squirrel'. That's her command to attack. Don't feed her, and stay out of Cady's underwear." -Lon to Bob, Summoning The Night

"I will take from you what you took from me. An eye for an eye... A heart for a heart." -Enola Duval, Binding The Shadows

"Screw you." [Arcadia Bell]
"You have no idea how much I'd love to." -Lon, Binding The Shadows

"You might have trouble believing this, but I spend most of my time being grateful you're near me or counting the minutes until you will be again." -Lon, Binding The Shadows

Dad had gone all Hellboy, Cady had turned into a black and white reptile. -Jupe, Binding The Shadows


Yet another great series that's ended *cue It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday by Boyz II Men*. I had another bout of a series binge read and my time was right on target with Jenn Bennett's ARCADIA BELL series. It was a good week just getting lost in Cady's curse and redemption and I loved how JBennett ended it on a high note instead of selling-out and dragging the story way past its expiration date. Just one solid arc which ended nice and tight, can't get better than that. 

THE GIST: Arcadia Bell's the embodiment of a prophesy. Thanks to a ritual done by her lunatic magician parents, Cady is the fated Moonchild, destined to do great things one of which is bridging the world of demons with ours. Only problem is, Cady's great powers came late and as soon as she got them, her cray-cray mother is on her ass, wanting the powers for herself. This ensued a bitter battle between mother and child and it's a bloody one.

THE URBAN FANTASY: One of the best myth building I've ever read. I've had the pleasure of reading "good" demons but JBennett's Aether and Earthbounds are very memorable in it's unique simplicity. She didn't riddle her world with italicized jargon and complicated cosmology and rather interspersed her growing world with the superb character development. I love how Earthbounds or demons are distinguished based on auras and though her sorcerers are called magicians, they are far from the hat and the bunny kind. They're more of a cross between Dumbledore and Voldemort sans the wands, ceremonial robes is a must though. 

THE ROMANCE: was angst-free! Cady is such a normal girl... errr... even if she transforms into this thing... her personal troubles are enough excitement for her and she didn't allow it to carry over her relationship with Lon even if the latter is also her partner in terms of vanquishing her evil mother. They kept it drama free as much as they can with the occasional lovers spat because no relationship is perfect right? Banishing The Dark was a little hard to read though because something happened here that had Cady and Lon freezing things in the romance department all for the greater good. I know I'm being cryptic but trust me, you don't want any spoilers at this point anyway because what I'm referring to is VERY CRUCIAL to the resolution of the story as a whole. Wonderful love fest aside, I love that Lon is much older than Cady with a teen son to boot! The modern family vibe did wonders in terms of bringing the human element into the story and how the three of them slowly became their own family is such an amazing side story. There's nothing like kids to bring a couple closer together!

HEROES: For a heroine whose greatest nemesis is her mother, Cady didn't throw a huge pity party, she remained focused on her mission without being numb and really knew her priorities and what mattered to her the most. Lon not only is a great romantic interest for Cady, he's also an awesome mission partner. Even if their relationship and other personal stuff got in the way of their working relationship, his loyalty to Cady was unquestionable. Lon never wavered when it comes to Cady and Jupe, he'd sacrifice himself without hesitating for the woman he loves. Awww!!

Special mention goes to Jupe, Lon's tenacious son. This boy is a scene stealer! For a secondary character, he sure can command a scene with his unfiltered observations, charming meddling, funny quips, and daredevil actions. I think Cady fell in love with him first before she did Lon which is no surprise because anybody would want Jupe to be their stepson. He can be a pain sometimes though but he gets really sweet especially when he knows he's in trouble.

The rest of the characters are just as great and memorable even if a lot of them only made short appearances. Cady's mom is a wonderful villain, she's so affecting you'd want to reach through the pages and strangle her yourself. 

Again, I'm sad to say goodbye to ARCADIA BELL, this is one of the best UF series out there. Everything is solid from the plot, character development down to the conflict and resolution. JBennett is a great storyteller and I hope that she has something new in the works because I sure love getting lost in her world. It's a unique experience you won't want to miss.







41 comments:

  1. Oh gosh, I have been reading so many reviews of series that are ending, always so hard and bittersweet

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    1. My only consolation is that the series ended well, otherwise til be a total bummer

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  2. I didn't enjoy the first book as much as many others did, I may go back and try it again one day! Glad you enjoyed them! :-)

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    1. Her Earthbounds are a great break from the usual supernatural crowd

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  3. Thanks Braine for putting another new series on my horizon!

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  4. It's always sad to say goodbye to a series :/

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  5. Karen at For What It's Worth brought this series to my attention a couple years ago. The fact that you say the world-building is unique, the romance is angst-free, and gave it a Suped Up rating has me inching closer to taking the plunge. Great review!

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  6. I love this series too. It is pretty great. Now I just have to read the new series, and all will be right in the world ;)

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    1. Hahaha! Take note this series is over so no long term commitment

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  7. well this series sounds exciting & I love your singing ;) I might have to try this one...love getting lost in folks worlds.

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    1. Hahaha! Very somber for a UF series

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  8. I have books three and four waiting for me, I need to be brave and read them! I will miss Jupe and the rest as well.

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    1. Be brave, it's a great conclusion!

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    2. Be brave, it's a great conclusion to the series

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  9. I loved seeing in your review ANGST FREE! I can get a tad overloaded with angst reads that I shy away until I can handle another. Nothing like some boyz to men, hehee! I love scene stealer lads in books. Glad to hear there is one in this lot. NOw Miss B you are talking this series up, I MUST read it. Best UF ever!! OK. I shall hold you to that. * goes finds library reserve list)

    I feel your excitement in this posting. xx

    Mich

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    1. Hahaha I'm surprised you're tired of angst-free romances! You used to read a lot of those... yes you MUST read this, take a break from your contemporaries and get back to UF

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  10. I have this whole series starring at me from my nightstand. When I get back from vacation later this month I'm digging in.

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    1. You do that, we all know we need a vacation after a vacation so this is a good post-vacay series binge

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  11. I've had these on my TBR for awhile now but still haven't read any >.<

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    1. Just like the Keri Arthur books that are sitting on mine

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  12. You ladies are killing me Braine! I've been seeing this series on all my favorite blogs and across the board it's raves. I've so been missing out!

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    1. Don't miss out anymore, go get it!

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  13. I loved this series and will miss it. I need to start her new series now.

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    1. Oh you must! Her Roaring Twenties series is very good too!

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  14. Fab review! I've had this series on the list for a while. I'm glad it's shorter and all finished so I can binge if I fall in love with it.

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    1. Short series are good, less time for the author to bungle it and mess it up for the fans. Always end it on a high note

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  15. Great review Braine! This sounds like a series I would enjoy! Great heroes, a good romance and I'm intrigued by the world! Yep... adding it to the pile!!

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

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  16. One of my friends adored this series so... I didn't put it on my to-read list, lol ! But now that I've read your review, I corrected this big mistake ;)

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    1. You should've listened to your friend :P

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  17. I haven't started this series, Braine, but it's really great to know that it is worth sitting down and reading in one go! Sometimes, I love binge-reading, but then, the series kind of has to be completely written so I don't get frustrated with the non-ending...
    At the same time, it's really sad when I great series come to an end, but since you loved Arcadia Bell so much, it will now go and play with some other books on my TBR shelf!

    Happy reading.

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. Hahaha! I like that, "heybooks! go play with your shelf mates!"

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  18. Sounds like a great series. Bitter sweet when the books are all read, but when they are 5 stars, they are always worth a second read, or a third......

    http://www.fundinmental.com/?p=11540

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    1. or a fourth, fifth... thanks sherry & I hope you can start this series soon if you're into UF

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  19. I loved the first book. I haven't had a chance yet to read the others. I hope to soon.

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  20. I love this series. I have all but Binding the Shadows. But I have read all but the new one. Its an awesome series and I can't for the next installment of the series.

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  21. Wow, the best myth building you ever read? And no angst in the romance? I am sold.

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  22. It's great you went on a series binge and the whole thing kept you invested and it went out on a high. And given it has the best myth building you've read AND a side character who's a scene stealer (I love those), I will absolutely be reading this series, Braine! :)

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