Sunday, May 1, 2011

Review - The Goddess Test by Aimeé Carter

Title: The Goddess Test
The Goddess Test (Harlequin Teen)SubTitle: Book I in The Goddess Test series
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: HarlequinTEEN
Pub Date: 04/26/2011
ISBN: 9780373210268
Reading level
Source: Netgalley.com
Category: FICTION - JUVENILE: Action & Adventure (incl. Interactive Adventures): Action & Adventure



Summary from Goodreads:

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.

I finished reading Aimeé Carter's The Goddess Test already some days ago, but wasn't able to start the review. Why? Because it will bring some conflicted and confused opinions of the book to the surface. There were parts of the book, which I absolutely loved and some parts which made me thinking: Is this for real?


This review will start out differently as my usual reviews where you find the rating on the bottom of the review. This book gets 3 stars out of 5.

What I liked about the book:

I really liked the idea of the plot: brining a teen girl into the world of Greek mythology. Brilliant! Not very new idea itself, because the idea of using old Greek mythology and gods has been used by several contemporary writers, but Aimeé Carter’s plot for this books was very promising and refreshing.

Meet Kate, a high school girl who is about to lose her mom to death. Kate’s mother is irreversibly ill and Kate is taking her mom to the place, where her mom grew up to give her some peace in her mind before dying. Due to a setup from one of the new people Kate has met in the school, she meets Henry – a guy who claims to be Hades. This is the moment, where the plot started to get really interesting to me: Greek gods!! I was hooked.

I loved the idea of the Council, where all main Greek gods were members of. The Council was to decide if Kate is suitable to take a place as the right hand of Henry – to become his goddess of the Underworld. Unfortunately, and to my surprise the pace of the book slowed down and picked up again during the last couple of chapters in the book.

The plot was really likable and captivating in the beginning of book and at the end of the book.

What I disliked about the book:

As said, the beginning and the end were interesting and good, but the rest of the plot was little too flat to me. I was waiting these tests what Kate had to survive… and I kept waiting and waiting. Only in the end of the book I realized what the author’s intention was. It was unexpected and surprising for me that the tests from the Council of the Greek gods were seven deadly sins. These were in my opinion not well enough brought out in the plot. I perceived these tests more like Kate just living in the manor and not “experiencing” and living these 7 sins. The only sin which was well enough emphasized and written was Lust. All the other 6 sins were flat. For me as a reader it was not challenging enough tests for Kate, it was little boring.

The second major problem for me with this book was that Greek gods were surprisingly normal and if you have some knowledge about Greek gods, then you know that there is nothing very normal about them. Way too normal and average - be it their names or their actions in the book. I think that Calliope was the only god who was close to the god she was supposed to be. All the other gods were too far from the original gods in Greek mythology. It seriously disturbed me that the characteristics of the Greek gods were almost not used in the book and I think it would have given and added so much to it. There was no strength, no power, and no wittedness which usually describes the gods of Greek mythology. That was a disappointment to me.

Characters:

What saved this book for me and the reason of it getting 3 stars and not less were some of the characters in the book, whom I really liked.

Kate was sympathetic, nice, and smart. Her love to her mom was overwhelming and her willingness to do whatever it takes to save her mother was believable. I liked the way Kate took care of people who were close to her.

Ava was the star of the book- she was funny, annoying, clueless and so well written, that you simply had to like her. Ava was a girl that in real life she would be a person whom you really wouldn’t want to befriend with, but really suited to be Kate’s friend in the manor. She brought some energy to the life in the manor!

I also liked the parts of the book where Calliope was presented. It took me by surprise which Greek god she was and what kind of relationship she had to Henry – and I loved that! Calliope was also one of the characters who were enjoyable and interesting to follow.

The author was generally speaking much better in describing the female characters compared to male characters. Male characters seemed empty – you had the bones with no flesh on them. There was one exception though and that was James. As for Henry, I think that a guy who is actually god of the Underworld and death has so much potential in it.

Summing it up:

Generally, it was average read with brilliant idea for the plot, but with weak implementation. I am sincerely hoping that the character and especially plot development is going to be improved in the next book of the series. I will definitely read the next book because I would like to know how the author is carrying on the story of Kate and Henry. I am also hoping that the Greek gods will be much more like Greek gods!

6 comments:

  1. Great review, but now I'm conflicted over whether I should buy The Goddess Test or get something else in its place.

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  2. Gabbie, I think it's always a good idea to read a book yourself. I have read many reviews about this book which give much more positive feedback. I think it really depends on the person.

    Thank you for coming by and leaving a comment!

    inga

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  3. I actually really loved this! But I can see why you'd think it fell a little flat. Don't be a stranger, stop by my blog sometime and say hi!

    Looking forward to hearing back from you,
    Cory @ Anti-Drug Reads

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi! Sorry to bother you but I'm going round blogs that have read The Goddess Test, me and another blogger are hosting a discussion on Saturday at 11pm GMT, where anyone who's read the book can discuss it with other bloggers. I was wondering if you'd be interested? You can find out more about it here: http://comacalm.blogspot.com/p/read-along.html

    ReplyDelete
  5. Cory, thanks for the comment, I also visited your blog and read your review.

    ComaCalm, thanks for coming by. I have joined your event, but there is a time difference, so I'm not 100% sure I can participate. Would love to though!

    ReplyDelete
  6. This one is on my to-read list. :) I love Greek mythology in general and the story of Persephone in particular. Reading your review, maybe I should bring my expectations down just a tad so that I won't be so diasappointed that is isn't wonderful that I won't be able to enjoy the fact that it is good. :)

    ReplyDelete

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