Parvathy's Reviews > The Goddess Test

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
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Sep 22, 11

bookshelves: mythology, wish-it-was-over-sooner, reinnovating-the-classics, young-adult, chick-lit, expected-more
Recommended to Parvathy by: goodreads
Read from September 15 to 17, 2011, read count: 1

I am a big fan of mythology. Call me crazy but the story of Persephone and Hades is my favorite and always thought that this story was worth looking in to. So to come across a YA book which is kind of based on this story you can imagine my excitement. This book had every potential to be a good read if it was not for the fact that the author did not do her research properly. Usually certain flaws like this can be overlooked and can be attributed to the author's creativity or imagination but even I couldn't negotiate with the reasoning that Hera was the one causing all the havoc because she was jealous of the girls who went after Hades. According to Greek mythology Hera is Zeus's wife and she is jealous of his lovers not Hades's and as far as I know she had little to do with Hades and his conquest besides the fact that they were siblings. Even if I am willing to overlook this flaw there are other things which are a little difficult to grasp. For one thing there is not much room for character development. I know that you are not supposed to try to rationalize things when you are reading a fantasy book but other than the fantasy elements there has to be some rationality in real world factors.

For those of you who don't know the story goes like this Kate Winter's is a 18 year old girl who brings her dying mother to her childhood home a town named Eden as her final wish so that she can die in peace. For Kate her mother is her whole world and would do anything to get her back to her old self. Enters a dark and mysterious stranger called Henry who claims himself to be none other than the Lord of the underworld Hades himself. He offers Kate her mother's life but there is a catch she has stay with him every six months a year and pass a series of tests the other Olympians put her through to see if she is worthy. If she passes she gets to be the Queen of the Underworld, Lord Hades's wife and goddess and if she fails she looses her mother and forget about this episode completely. But unknowing to her there were others before her and none of them have lived to tell the tale.

The protagonist Kate Winter's was too mature for her age. Her constant mental rambling reminded me of a very old woman than a 18 year old. Moving on to the parts that stuck out like a sore thumb. Especially her friendship with the characters James and Ava. She hardly knew them before she started claiming them as her life long friends. The parts were she started reminiscing whether she would ever get to see her James again I kept thinking "her James" she hardly knew the guy. As for Ava one minute she was considering Kate a threat and the next minute she claims her as her best friend. Even if Ava had her reasons I thought Kate being all rational would at least suspect her motives. Then there is the time when Kate explains her deal with Henry to her friends and tells them about the Persephone myth when all of a sudden James takes out a big book of Greek mythology from his bag and starts reading out the story from it and Kate didn't find it intriguing enough to ask him why he is carrying around such a big book of Greek mythology with him. Also their reaction when Kate tells them that Henry may be Hades they both accept it without any arguments and starts listing pros and cons about the deal. If I were in Kate's place I would have asked them why they choose to believe me when any normal person would have done the contrary but Kate never finds this behavior absurd. The ritual were Kate has to eat a number of seeds is also not explained. I know these are just minor flaws but attention to such details are the things that help in measuring the quality of a book and the writing style involved.

Henry aka Hades on the other hand felt like an under developed character. Other than being a tortured hero and a lonely guy there is not much depth to his character. Most of the time he is really confusing. The leads lacked chemistry and felt like they were forced to fall in love with each other. The twists are predictable and the motives confusing. There are a number of loose ends which require explanations and the character did not live up to their potential. But the story flows in a fast pace and if you are willing to overlook such flaws you might even enjoy it. I wouldn't recommend this book to greek mythology fanatics but there are certain interesting interpretations which might be of interest to them if they are willing to keep an open mind. This book is for those who enjoy a light read and would like to move forward caught up in the flow of the story without over thinking and complicating things.
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09/15/2011 page 120
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