April 2, 2011

Book Review: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

Goddess Test
At First Sight: Kate's whole world revolves around her mother, it has always been the two of them - something she has felt even more acutely in the last four years, since her mother was diagnosed with cancer and Kate became preoccupied with taking care of her.

Knowing she doesn't have much time left, Kate's mom asks her to move to her hometown of Eden, so she can spend her last few days/weeks there. 

Eden is a small town where everyone knows each other business, and Kate finds herself reluctantly making friends with James (a sort of outcast) and Ava (a popular girl). And she also meets a mysterious boy named Henry. 

From the moment he shows up, Henry starts to make quite unbelievable claims. Like being able to bring the dead back to life, or guard off death, or being Hades, lord of the underworld. 

When Henry offers Kate the thing she wants the most - time to say goodbye to her mother - she agrees to some strange terms: to live with him of 6 months, to undergo a series of tests, and to maybe rule the underworld with him forever more.

Second Glance: The Goddess Test  is sort of a re-telling of the myth of Persephone and Hades but not really. Basically, Hades has found himself in need of a new queen with whom to share the responsibilities of ruling the underworld and the one appointed to the task is Kate.  

Only that Kate is quite reluctant to fulfill that role and yet, at the same time, she doesn't really has much else going on, so she agrees. The thing is, though, that I could never connect with either Kate or Henry. 

Part of it was, I think, because the transition between the prologue and the first chapter of the book was so jarring and it left me very confused, so for the first few chapters I was trying to make sense of it all - and I think part of me kept trying to fit this story to what I know of the myth of H & P but it was hard, so that kept distracting me, and I never quite found my grove with this book.

While the writing is really nice and flows well, I had a hard time reading it for long periods of time because the story was kind of flat, I kept waiting for something to happen, for something to be revealed, for the tests themselves, but I felt like I went through a succession of events without much actually happening until the very end, if that makes sense.

Bottom Line: This book wasn't exactly what I expected, but I really liked Aimée Carter's writing style. I would have enjoyed it more, though, if I had liked the characterization more. The Goddess Test will be released one April 19th, and it's the first of a projected trilogy.

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