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Summoning the Night by Jenn Bennett
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's review
Jun 10, 2012

really liked it

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Verushka

Arcadia Bell is back! And so is Lon and Jupiter and the Hellfire Club, in this the second of the series by Jenn Bennett.

The book opens with Arcadia firmly a part of Lon and Jupiter’s life, to the extent that her boyfriend has no qualms about leaving his son with her while he is away on a shoot. As a result, we are treated to some Jupiter/Arcadia time which goes a long way to showing most effectively how much a part of his life he is, and how he trusts her.

One thing their relationship highlighted for me in the beginning and during the rest of the book is how effortlessly Arcadia has been adopted into Lon and Jupiter’s life. Part of me wonders if,as a reader, I’ve missed on seeing how they came to trust her and wants a little more angst, but there are too many books that can provide that. What I like about this series is that Arcadia has to learn how not to be a loner, and I confess the trials and tribulations of a supernatural couple bringing up a supernatural son in an incredibly normal surroundings is far more interesting and provides an interesting source of conflict. In this title, Jupiter develops his “knack”, his power as the child of two supernatural beings and it is the ability to make people do what he wants. Something dangerous in the hands of a teenager, no matter how hard the parents try to teach him to do better. In this book, Jupiter is still a very young teen, so I expect and hope things change for the interaction between the three as a family is far more interesting than if Arcadia was angsting over a possible love interest.

The book begins with and maintains a fast pace, in keeping with the premise of this novel – children are being snatched, very much like children were thirty-something years ago in the town and the pacing emphasises the fear every adult has for the safety of their child. The HellFire Club asks Lon and Arcadia to look into the case and the action moves quickly, with tightly written prose. Suffice it to say, the case is long and winding and Arcadia is forced to use her MoonChild power, the same power her parents essentially bred her for and tried to kill her for. She begins afraid of it, but by the end of the book, she is more in tune with the power than she might care to admit. Her greatest fear is that she will turn out like her parents, and Jupiter too is a catalyst for bringing that fear out in her.

The only thing I am unsure about is the speed with which Arcadia falls under the thumb of the head of the HellFire Club, Dare, the same man who hires her to search for the missing children. On the one hand, I can understand the need for an antagonist for Arcadia as she is firmly settled in her bar and her town. How often can new people come into town to give her a case to solve? But, then again, people can come into town, asking for her help. She cannot exactly build a reputation if she wants to keep her identity safe, but the way in which Dare managed to get information about her past and became a threat felt too much like a convience in what was already a packed novel.

Overall, an effortless, enjoyable read. If you liked the Charlie Madigan series by Kelly Gay – and I love that series – you’ll enjoy Arcadia, Lon and Jupe immensely.

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