Bend For Me

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Fanfiction
Title: Bend For Me
Author(s): heyjayyay
Date(s): Published May 4, 2016 – May 6, 2017
Length: 123,746 words; 23 chapters[1]
Genre: modern AU, femslash
Fandom: The 100
External Links:

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Bend For Me by heyjayyay is a Clexa fanfiction that was originally hosted on Archive of Our Own. It is a modern AU and was published in 23 chapters from May 4, 2016 to May 6, 2017.[1] The fic was deleted from AO3 so that it could be republished as an original romance novel after filing off the serial numbers. In the commercial version, Clarke and Lexa's names were changed to Avery Bennett and Kadence Cooper respectively.[2]

The original summary from AO3:[1]

Sloppy, Fratboy!Clarke lives with Octavia, who drags her to her yoga class one day. Clarke is the shit. She knows it. She's cocky and doesn't take crap from anyone, doesn't bend for anybody, and refuses to break. Until now.

AKA the one where Clarke thinks she's smooth, but Lexa is smoother.

Yoga AU.

Bend For Me was the runner-up in the "Best Hurt/Comfort Fanfiction" category at the 2017 Clexa Fanfiction Awards. On August 29, 2017, prior to being deleted, the fic had 565 comments, 3344 kudos, 445 bookmarks, and 74,180 hits.[1]

Reactions and Reviews

Of the published novel:

[5 stars]

"Some things you see with your eyes, others you see with your heart."

This was emotional, hilarious and overall an incredible read. This couple literally had me at hello. I couldn't stop smiling at the way Avery turned into a bumbling mess whenever Kadence was near. She's supposed to be some charming player and she literally forgot her own bloody name in front of Kandece and all Kandece did was blush, blush, blush. But that's only when they weren't engaged in a playful banter. The flirting was like Melissa Brayden level smooth. I loved when they made each other laugh which was a lot and when they understood each other just by one gaze in the other's eyes. It was amazing watching them struggle with their intense building emotional connection and then slowly giving in. They were both pretty damaged especially Kandece, still they managed to scale each others walls. The secondary characters were great as well, mainly Melody, the overprotective sister.(side note: I am completely in love with Kandece)

This is the second book Jessica Yeh has written. I really hope she continues to write more because she is very talented.[3]

[5 stars]

In the last few weeks, I got the opportunity to discover some new authors. Jessica Yeh is one of them, and I like her writing.

Since Avery Bennett's heart was shattered after a bad breakup, she keeps her women at distance and has a reputation as a player. She is always very confident with a woman of her interest, but never let someone getting close again. When her best friends drag her to a yoga class, everything changes. She can’t stop thinking about the yoga instructor, she's not able to forget her even if she tries with a hookup. What should she do? Act on her attraction? Should she make a play for her? But there is one problem, around the beautiful yoga teacher, she mutates to a clumsy and tong-tied individual.

Kadence Cooper is said yoga instructor. After a tragic incident in her past, she had to fight her depressions to find her way back to life. Teaching Yoga has helped her, but still, sorrow and grief sometimes catch up with her. One day a student of hers brings Avery, a good looking, cocky woman to her class. What is it with this woman with the horrible pick up lines, that she can’t get her out of her mind? Because she does not want anything from any woman.

Will the two wounded souls find a way to the heart of each other?

I liked Avery and Kadence a lot, although in the beginning Avery was very flippant and could be a little bit annoying. But the better you get to know her, the more likable she became, the more I saw behind her pose, the more I understood her behavior. She's a person who doesn't like to talk about her feelings, and after an incident between her and Kadence, she really does not dare to say anything about feelings.

Kadence is a beautiful and funny person, she challenges Avery with her teasing and likes that she can make her speechless. She has to fight her own demons from the past, which are really not easy to put them to rest. The friendship with her sister is very strong and beautiful and helps her a lot.

The Story is well written, with a smooth flow. It is a very low burning romance, which was perfect. Otherwise, it would not have been realistic. The characters are good persons and they have great chemistry. The author did a good job of bringing them together again, but very slowly. There is a lot of funny banter, bad pickup-lines, emotions, love, sadness, and hope in this story. It's about friendship, trust, family, and love. The secondary characters are great too, especially Avery's best friend Emma and Kadence's sister Melody-the-ice-queen were perfect. It’s written in the third person. There was only thing I didn't like, too much mentioning of "amber eyes" and "green eyes".

Recommended to all romance lovers

My rating 4.5 stars

ARC provided by the author and LezReviewBooks.com in exchange for an honest review[4]

[1 star]

DNF @ 33%

I really hate giving up on a book. Especially when I gave the author's previous book a 5* rating and listed it as 2019 favorite read. I tried several times over two days to continue this story but I couldn't do it for several reasons. The main ones being:

- The writing style.
- Inconsistent character behavior.
- Avery. (This one's a doozy!)

The explanation of why those things bothered me so much and caused me to chuck this book aside contains lots of spoilers so if you plan on reading this book, obviously don't read the following part.

The writing style.
Aside from tiny flashbacks throughout the chapters that I've read, the author did something weird between chapter 7 and 8. At the end of chapter 7 Avery is about to tell Kadence 'her story'. Chapter 8 however launches into a flashback about Kadence and her ex. Then we're back to present time. Then back to another flashback about Kadence's ex and then back to the present again. Meanwhile we readers still don't know what the hell happened the previous night at the end of chapter 7.

Inconsistent character behavior.
Melody (Kadence's older sister) goes from literally almost punching Avery's lights out to being fine with Kadence being Avery's date to an art opening at a gallery in the span of a few days. Why? Melody had no other interaction with Avery so what changed her mind all of a sudden?

Avery.
Ever get annoyed by dude bro's / frat boys / f**k boys and their obnoxious and immature behavior? Well combine all three of those and you get Avery Bennett. If you're thinking she can't be that bad or that I'm exaggerating here are some of Avery's quotes and one of her finest moments:

"I...sorry. It's just...I'm an artist. Sometimes I forget that staring at anatomy is considered creepy."
"I am pretty unforgettable, aren't I?"
"Hey, gorgeous. Did you miss me?"
"Hey, I only look at your tits because your eyes are too distracting."

"I partially blame the media. Sex sells. And women are put on display to help sell products. In a way, it's artistic. But it also gets to the point where you don’t even remember what they’re trying to sell you. You just remember the girls. Especially if they look like you."

If that wasn't bad enough, take a look at the following encounter:

"Avery, I'm not sure if—"
Avery cut her off by pressing her lips desperately to Kadence's. Had it been any other circumstance, Kadence might have kissed Avery back. But everything about this felt wrong. Kadence pulled away.
"Avery, wait."
Avery's arms were wrapped around her waist and she leaned forward again and latched onto her neck, biting at the skin.
"Avery!" Kadence gasped, pushing against her shoulders. "Avery, stop."
*Kadence pushes her away*
"Damn it, Kadence. You're such a fucking tease. Am I just a toy to you? Someone you can flirt with for fun? Or do you think I won't be able to satisfy you? Am I not good enough? Are you not ready?"

I get that the author will no doubt try to redeem Avery but I honestly don't care how or when that happens. I already wasted enough time being angry at a fictional character and frankly I don't have the energy for it anymore.

Finally, and I may be wrong, but at some point this was a Clexa fan fiction wasn't it? If not it certainly reads like one.[5]

[4 stars]

Another great book from the author.

Both Kadence and Avery are damage. You'll just have to read to know who's cut is the deepest.

People change when they're hurt and also people deals with their problems differently.. you have to get to know them to understand them.

At first I'm having a hard time warming up with Avery..she's immature and annoying but at end you will like her.

With Kadence, well. Wow! Where can I find someone like her?

I like Melody (Kadence sister) she’s a true Ice queen, their relationship is gold.

If you're looking for a realistic book, I would recommend this.

Slow burn, faded to black sex scene, no major twist.

Great writing though. 👍🏽👍🏽[6]

[4 stars]

This is the Sapphic Book Club book of the month for December.

This was a sweet contemporary romance novel. After Avery had her heartbroken, she took on an aloof and player attitude to protect herself. She wasn't looking for love and neither was Kadence while she continued to with a traumatic event.

I thoroughly enjoyed this read. I'll admit it took long than normal for me to get pulled into the story and attached to the characters, but once I did, I was sucked in. Ended up reading the last 80% in one sitting. I really liked Avery and her whole character arc. She was funny, embarrassing, and had quirky dialog with her best friend Emma (who deserves a gold star for friendship goals).

While I liked Kadence, her character arc felt a little to quick for me. My one compliant (and its one I've had for similar situations) is that characters who have PTSD moments or panic attacks, tend to have 2 and then never again. One at the beginning to set the stage, and then the second in the presence of the love interest to show that they have a positive effect. When I was done reading, it just felt like I got a lot of time to see Avery work thru her stuff and stumble and right herself, while I didn’t get that feeling from Kadence. A very small complaint for a very enjoyable read.

All in all, I greatly enjoyed this read and would recommend this to romance fans.[7]

[5 stars]

A player meets her match in a lost soul, but are their walls too thick for them to reach each other?

Avery Bennett does not know what hit her when she lays on yoga instructor Kadence Cooper. Avery is all about the game, hit and quit it. Do not get involved. Never give out too much information. Keep everything fun and light. She knows all of the one-liners, except when she is around Kadence. She manages to flub the one-liners or trip over a rock. Kadence is smooth and is not looking for anything either, but she does not want to even "hook up" with Avery. She has her own battles to beat and Avery is just a distraction. A distraction that now shows up everywhere and she cannot get off her mind. Avery is having the same problem as Kadence is in every thought, dream, and sentence. Avery's only choice is to make a play.

Jessica Yeh brings a lot of humor to Bend For Me (2019). I found Avery and Kadence to be a really fun couple to read about and to root for a happy ending. Yeh does bring serious issues as hurdles for each individual and the couple to overcome, but it does not weigh down the story. I was surprised that the only detailed sex scene is not between the Avery and Kadence, matter of fact Avery and Kadence are pretty PG. Instead Yeh focuses on the relationship and the growth of them as individuals. The story is not as boring as that just sounded, due to the humor that Yeh interjects. Avery's character is a hoot and she goes through the biggest transformation. I am not sure she would have changed as much as she did, but it is an interesting twist. Bend was a quick read and Avery and Kadence are fun to be around. I will admit that Yeh does not make want to take up yoga, but she does make me want to read another book of her's.[8]

[1 star]

Avery Bennett's ex cheated on her and that is reason enough for her to become a player. Never mind that the ex was male and she is on a spree to go through women. Avery’s supportive best friend inveigles her into attending a yoga class. The yoga instructor, Kadence Cooper, turns out to be one irresistible woman. Avery lays it thick on her and seems to have met her match.

So, here is a confession: Avery is just so awful, disgusting, crude and lewd that we just couldn't fathom how anyone would want to have even a conversation with her. Then there is a point when she almost attacks Kadence in a closet. If it was a male character instead of a female, it would've been a rape scene. At this, we actually abandoned the book. However, Kadence is such a great character that after a few days we returned to the book to know who it works out for her.

The second half of the book (after the attack) is all about Avery trying to redeem herself, but we still failed to see the attraction or any appeal in her. Even in the second half, Avery doesn't become any less smug or irritating. Kadence with her awesomeness (not to mention delightful flirting skills) should’ve got someone more deserving of her.

The character (Avery) completely kills this book which may have had possibility.

A definite NO to this one.

PS: While the book is half-a-star, Kadence is definitely 5 star![9][10]

References

  1. ^ a b c d Bend For Me on AO3 via the Wayback Machine. Captured August 29, 2017.
  2. ^ Bend For Me by Jessica Yeh on Desert Palm Press. Archived version.
  3. ^ Review by mishi on Goodreads. March 5, 2020. Archived version.
  4. ^ Review by Sandra on Goodreads. October 7, 2019. Archived version.
  5. ^ Review by Alexis on Goodreads. October 16, 2019. Archived version.
  6. ^ Review by Starsandsun18 on Goodreads. July 25, 2019. Archived version.
  7. ^ Review by Caitlin on Goodreads. December 9, 2019. Archived version.
  8. ^ Review by Phoebe on Goodreads. September 17, 2019. Archived version.
  9. ^ Review by Best Lesfic Reviews on Goodreads. December 19, 2019. Archived version.
  10. ^ Bend For Me by Jessica Yeh on Best Lesfic Reviews. December 2019. Archived version.