Why This Book: Mythology! Not only mythology, but Hades and Persephone (which is totally my favorite myth). Also.. my netgalley request was about to expire, so I needed to review it NOW.
Disclaimer: This ecopy was given to me by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Type: Young Adult, Mythology, Hades and Persephone, Olympians, Greek mythos, Paranormal Romance, Teen Romance, Parental loss
About the book: It's always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate's going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won't live past the fall.
Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he'll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.
Kate is sure he's crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she'll become Henry's future bride, and a goddess.
My Review: I found "The Goddess Test" to be an interesting take on the Hades and Persephone myth. However, this book isn't so much a retelling as a continuation - a sort of "what happen's way down the line," or maybe a sequel. And the idea of someone taking Persephone's place so Henry isn't so alone any more is a nice one - even better when it's not just a case of taking the position, but having to be tested first. I liked the idea of the tests, and even more so after I learned more about them in the end.
I did find parts of the story to be a little predictable. I guessed the villain early on, and kept hoping to be surprised or thrown for a loop near the end. While I did correctly guess the villain, I didn't know the how or why, so there was some mystery to be had in the story. The other issue I found was - again with the idea of immortals going to high school. Personally, I couldn't wait to get out of highschool, but it seems ancient beings are lined up out the door to get back in. The exception seems to be Henry (which was a nice change from many YA books), who steered clear of the school.
I did enjoy the main characters. Kate's feelings seemed genuine, and really felt like that cute, adorable first love that teenage girls fall into. And Henry - I can really get behind Henry. I just wanted to hug him and make it all better. Alas, Kate beat me to it, but I did enjoy seeing the two play off each other throughout the course of the story. I will say I'd love for Henry to be a little more stuck in his ways, and seeing Kate pull him in a different direction. Here's hoping we'll get some more interesting interactions between the two in the next book!
Cover Loving: I'm torn between liking it and not. I love that the text is in semi-greek lettering, and I think the layout and placement of the text is well done. But I'm not sure about the girl - the outfit and background are good, but I think the model is a little too old looking for Kate.
Recommendation: Fans of mythology and young adult novels will enjoy "The Goddess Test." I would probably recommend this for older teens, as sex and sexuality is mentioned and dealt with (though dealt with extremely well) on a few occasions.
Final Rating: FOUR out of FIVE (4/5). Definitely some good points - likeable characters, very interesting sequel to one of my favorite myths, and I liked it enough that I am eagerly anticipating the sequel.
Have you read "The Goddess Test" by Aimee Carter? Share your thoughts in the comments! Want to pick up a copy? Get it from Amazon.com! The second book has a title - "Goddess Interrupted" - and is currently scheduled for release near the end of January in 2012.
~!~ Amanda ~!~