For What It's Worth

For What It's Worth

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Review: Binding the Shadows (Arcadia Bell #3) by Jenn Bennett


13630629In the third book in this beloved and “riveting” (Romantic Times) urban fantasy series, demon-friendly tiki bar owner Arcadia Bell discovers more about her own evolving, and possibly destructive, magical abilities when her bar is the target of a demonic crime wave.

Renegade mage and bartender Arcadia Bell has had a rough year, but now the door to her already unstable world is unhinging. When a citywide crime wave erupts, Cady's demon-friendly tiki bar is robbed by Earthbounds wielding surreal demonic abilities that just flat-out shouldn't exist. With the help of her devilishly delicious boyfriend, Lon Butler, Cady sets out to find the people who wronged her—but her targets aren't the only ones experiencing unnatural metamorphoses. Can Cady track down the monsters responsible before the monster inside her destroys everything—and everyone—she loves? If she survives this adventure, one thing is certain: it's last call for life as she knows it. ~ Goodreads

Source: Purchased

Review: 
My interest in UF has waned over the years because for the most part (there are always exceptions) the genre has gotten repetitive. Kick ass heroine that everyone wants to f*ck, hot alpha dude who runs hot then cold, lots of angst. It's all very predictable.

Then we have Arcadia Bell. This is the third book in this brilliant UF series and I went into this one terrified for several reasons. First being the third book in a series is usually when the predictability kicks in and things start to happen just to stretch things out. Then there have been a few things looming in the background that I was SURE were going to come to a head in this book. They did….but not in any of the ways that I was expecting. This book blew me away.

I'm not going to get into the spoilery details. If you haven't read the series start now with book #1 Kindling the Moon. You'll be hooked.

I bow to Bennett's brilliance with this book. She could have gone several ways here with Cady, Lon and Jupe. It would have been fine. Interesting, Heartbreaking even. But predictable. Instead she flipped the whole thing on it's head writing a deeper story about family, relationships and the human condition rather than taking the easy way out. Every time someone tells me they need such and such trope to create tension/drama, I will point to this series.

I'm so completely in love with and invested in Cady, Lon and Jupe at this point. I've just never read this type of dynamic written so well. Their relationship leaves me warm and hopeful.

Jenn Bennett has upped the stakes for Cady and company in Binding the Shadows, adding new characters seamlessly while shocking us with new information that will spin this series on it's head once again. I can’t recommend this series enough.

All I can really say is….wow. Job well done.

Author: website | twitter | series extras
Buy the book!
Binding the Shadows (Arcadia Bell)

My reviews for: Kindling the Moon (#1) | Summoning the Night (#2)

15 comments:

  1. Book 1 was good, just not good enough for me. Still it seems to be going strong

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    1. I think the third book is the strongest one so far. The 2nd took a bit of a dip for me but I really enjoy this series.

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  2. The third book really is the turning point -- are we going to go down the same road yet again or keep things fresh for the series. Good to hear this one lived up to its promise for you!

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    1. I agree and there were so many story lines coming to a boiling point that could have gone the way every other book before it went but I'm thrilled that she took a different direction with the whole thing.

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  3. wow good to know that it works with jupe and being a 3rd book in the series. Yeah :)

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    1. I think you would like this one Julie.

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    2. Add this book to my borrow reading pile then :)

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  4. Yay! I'm glad to know #3 is going strong. I remember in book #1 I wondered how on earth Bennett was going to make a dude named Lon with that scraggly facial hair an attractive love interest, but she actually did! And I just love Jupe. I haven't picked this one up yet, but I can't wait to. :)

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  5. Oh I LOVE this series. So need to read this one yet. I knew I wanted it and now I KNOW I must have it! So glad this one is a strong 3rd book!

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  6. I love when series keep us hooked even if the genre isn't what is on the top of our TBR :) Those are the best!!!!

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  7. Wow. Well, this is surprising! Because I always feel the same way about UF - it's just so dang predictable. So this review definitely intrigues me.

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  8. OH jeez I completely agree! UF definitely has gotten repetitive! Hence I jumped to another genre. I think I'll enjoy some more UF after I have a cooling off period. You nailed it right on the head "the genre has gotten repetitive. Kick ass heroine that everyone wants to f*ck, hot alpha dude who runs hot then cold, lots of angst. It's all very predictable."

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  9. Hmmm, maybe I'll try this series.

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  10. The characters sound great, and I think I would be totally invested in them as well.

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    1. They really are! I don't think I've been attached to characters like this in a long time. They make mistakes of course but they are a family unit which is so unique for a long running series.

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