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Three high school girls become the avenging Furies of Greek legend.

We were only three angry girls, to begin with. Alix, the hot-tempered surfer chick; Stephanie, the tree-hugging activist; and me, Meg, the quiet foster kid, the one who never quite fit in. We hardly knew each other, but each of us nurtured a burning anger: at the jerks in our class, at our disappointing parents, at the whole flawed, unjust world.

We were only three angry girls, simmering uselessly in our ocean-side California town, until one day a mysterious, beautiful classmate named Ambrosia taught us what else we could be: Powerful. Deadly. Furious.

336 pages, Hardcover

First published April 16, 2013

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About the author

Jill Wolfson

9 books88 followers
Hello! I'm the author of novels for middle grade readers (8-12) and young adults.

Coming soon! FURIOUS. April 2013 from Henry Holt. The Furies of Greek mythology are rising!

My debut novel, "What I Call Life" and its follow-up, "Home and Other Big, Fat Lies" revolve around the lives of kids living in foster care. I'm also the author of "Cold Hands, Warm Heart" (Henry Holt, 2009). It's about sudden death, sudden life.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 107 reviews
Profile Image for Nemo (The ☾Moonlight☾ Library).
627 reviews302 followers
January 10, 2013
See this review and more on The Moonlight Library!

Furious is a modern take on the Furies of Ancient Greece and Rome. They were female spirits or demi-gods of justice and revenge. There are a lot of different mythologies of the Furies, and in this novel, they were once goddesses. Now they are reborn into the bodies of three angry teenagers at an American high school – Meg, Alix and Stephanie. Alix is a surfer, Stephanie is a tree hugger, and Meg is a foster kid. We follow Meg’s story as she grows into her Fury powers and learns to take control of her life.

Wolfson’s biggest achievement in this novel is her startling clear characterisation. Each character is clearly defined and experiences some kind of growth throughout the novel. They all have different voices and different goals, and orbit around each other in their little dance of revenge.

Wolfson’s writing is clean and elegant but certainly not overly wordy and certainly not particularly poetic. It was fast to read and I found myself eagerly flipping the pages due to the writing being clear enough and the plot interesting enough to want to get to know what the characters were up to next. It’s a good formula and one that worked well with me. Wolfson also broke the novel into different sections with the use of stasimons, which are utilised in Greek plays. This shows how Furious is influenced by Aeschylus, who wrote a play featuring the Furies “Oresteia”. It was really interesting to read a novel when the author has clearly done a lot of research into the phenomenon/monster starring in it. Although there are a lot of different takes on the Furies, there’s no blatantly incorrect things written in (like an angel falling in love with a human and remaining in God’s favour COUGH HALO COUGH).

It’s actually hard for me to pin down why I liked this so much. It wasn’t perfect, but I do like mean girl stories. One of the reasons this doesn’t get 5 stars is because Meg’s always justifying her revenge because of her horrific home life – that is to be expected, as Meg is the one who openly holds a grudge.

Perhaps I would have liked it more if Meg was unabashedly gleeful in her meanness, but most of the time she seemed unaware of the wrongness of her own actions, convinced she was truly giving justice. I know that’s the whole point, and I wouldn’t want it to change, but I think that aspect of the plot bothered me just a little. The mean girl books I truly devour have the girl getting her comeuppance at the end, not a happily ever after.

Many thanks to Cuddlebuggery Book Blog for sending me this ARC.
Profile Image for Mitch.
355 reviews605 followers
May 13, 2013
So I was asked why I read Furious. Honestly? I don't know. This isn't the first young adult book starring the Furies of Greek mythology - and most likely not the last - so rather than repeating ad nauseam the same pitfalls as the last book involving the Furies (*cough*Fury*cough*). I'm just going to be direct and to the point:

-Being a Fury doesn’t give you a license to be a terrible person.
Basically, Meg is a horrible, judgy person. Let me set up the scene. Meg likes this guy, Brendon, who hangs out with a bunch of jerk friends. She's positive he's not like those other guys on the inside (lol), so she goes with him to a party at her 'friend' Ambrosia's house, where they make out on Ambrosia's bed. Predictably, Meg and Brendon are ambushed by Brendon's friends who humiliate her. She knows he was set up, but rather than talking about it, she uses her powers to force him to commit suicide by jumping out a window. Wow. And does she feel any remorse for what she's done? Nope! Instead, she decides to use those same powers to punish everyone else at her school by making them all miserable. WTF?

Yes, I know Meg’s meanness is the point of the book. I can see how Jill Wolfson wrote her as a victim who became evil by lashing back, but I don’t believe that for a second, because revenge didn’t make her evil, seems to me like she was evil to begin with. The way she’s written, she’s neither hero nor antihero nor victim, but a villain, plain and simple, and who wants to root for that?

-Justice demands more than stereotypical black and white characters.
It doesn’t help that the other characters are all quite petty and shallow. Brendan's friends really are jerks. Meg's foster mother is a 'Leech' who takes in foster kids so she can live off their allowances from the state. The other two Furies, Alix has anger management issues and Stephanie is the kind of walking cliche who gives real environmentalists a bad rep, and yet there are a pair of girls nicknamed the Double D's who are lumped in with everyone else because they dress promiscuously. Yeah...

In case that wasn’t enough clear, Furious kind of falls into the same trap as that other Fury book, except actually probably worse. A recurring theme of the Furies is that they’re ‘evil’ while their victims are ‘good’ despite how the Furies are merely avenging wrongs, but whereas it works for Orestes (he’s guilty of matricide but it was a REALLY good reason), it’s only because there are shades of gray and moral ambiguities that makes clear what’s really going on. In this young adult version though, those deeper moral issues get airbrushed away and becomes a black and white world where the morality aspect is just messed up. And if I'm being invited to judge these characters, what if I don't want to accept 'good' as really good and 'evil' as evil? Yeah, no. Besides, two eyes for an eye and there’d be only one blind person...

-Although modeling the book after the Greek tragedies is actually kinda cool...
Despite my reservations and misgivings about the characters, I did like that Jill Wolfson does something a little different with the book. She has these stasimons scatter every couple of chapters from Ambrosia’s point of view explaining some of the background, and yeah, they make a lot of the plot painfully obvious, but I thought it was a nice touch and shout out to the Greek theater inspiration (yeah, huge fan of Aeschylus’s Oresteia right here...). So there’s that.
Profile Image for Tee loves Kyle Jacobson.
2,474 reviews172 followers
April 4, 2013
I will first start out by saying that I LOVED this book and for a stand alone book I wanted more. The characters and the scenery had me at the edge of my seat and wanting no needing more. Anger it is what fuels us sometimes. We feel it but we keep it in check. So imagine what would happen if you have three angry teenage girls and enters a fourth angry girl who wants revenge and will do anything to get that revenge? Well you have Furious and holy hades what a story.

You have three girls who have nothing and I men nothing in common but their anger. Their anger fuels them and fuses them together. Alix is hot tempered but very protective of her brother. All she wants is to surf and hang with her brother. Stephanie is a crazy tree hugging activist. Her mother could care less about the environment and that makes Steph crazy because she is a developer with one thing on her mind and that is making money. Meg is the narrator of the story and she has a story to tell. She has been in foster care since she was born and has never really gotten close to anyone until now. She is close to Raymond but at times he drives her nuts so she prefers to be alone.

These three girls have a lot of anger and when the new girl Ambrosia comes to town they will unleash that anger and become the Greek furies. Holy hell Ambrosia comes to town and what she stirs up is a whole lot of anger and trouble. See Ambrosia is seeking revenge on the one person who destroyed her and that person is Pallas Athena. She will teach the girls that anger is good but being powerful and deadly and furious is much more better with better results. What will the girls do when they feel the power of the anger? Will they hurt people or will they learn to control it? Fury fuels the heart what will it be........
Profile Image for usagi ☆ミ.
1,197 reviews277 followers
March 4, 2013
There's been a huge explosion of mythological and fairy retelings within YA in the last few years, and it's been a joy to comb my way through all of them. Some of them have had some of the most original ways of retelling these myths/legends/fairy tales, and "Furious" is no exception. I've always had a soft spot in my heart for the furies, and "Furious" gets it right, also reminding us that the more bent on revenge we are, the uglier we become (which so many YA myth books neglect to talk about when talking about the furies or other equal figures in other cultures), which is what I love the most about this book. If you're looking for a great new YA mythological retelling, definitely check out "Furious".

What's interesting about this book is that there's a lot of double worldbuilding. What is double worldbuilding? When the protagonist is both in an external world that needs to be brought to life, but also has a very active inner world ("inner life") that also needs to be brought to the fore, because they spend so much time within it. All of the characters, especially Meg, have his double worldbuilding thing that needs to be done, and Wolfson does a great job with it. The further all three girls fall temptation to take their "rightful place" alongside leader Ambrosia, the further the internal world gets built, along with the memories and emotions that fuel their need for that role as a fury. Now, the internal worldbuilding is really thorough and we really get why each girl is doing what she's doing. But the external worldbuilding could have used a bit more work, though Wolfson did do the right (and clever) thing by shrinking down the external world to that of the town and everyone in it. I just didn't feel that the external world was complete enough, and it just needed a little more crafting.

What's also great is the fact that all three MCs get their own personal journey arcs, so that we can really track their development from the start of the book to the end, and their descent into revenge. While I feel like Stephanie was a little too stereotypical in her "tree-hugger" role, all three girls are very different from each other, though they relate to each other quite well. This, I think, is where Wolfson shines the most outside of the actual arc and plot retelling of Aeschylus' "Oretesia" (the source material for this book) - character building. She's great at really fleshing out all of her characters in her main cast, even outside of her MCs, and even the most minor character in that main cast feels very real. I loved that, and it made the book that much more enjoyable.

While I can't say that I didn't see all of those big reveals coming (some were kind of obvious), the ones that were a surprise were pretty awesome, and actually makes me want to read the source material to see how the construction of this retelling compares to the original. I loved how the plots were structured as if it were a Greek play, with separated sections showing the girls falling further into their need/want for revenge, and the consequences that soon arise from those needs. Also, the mention of the power of numbers/numerology was great, as we rarely see that in YA paranormal books, regardless if they're retellings. I have a thing for numerology, and it was done correctly her, and that made me pretty happy. In history, all over the world, numbers played a huge part in whether someone would make a move, buy something, or make a big life change, and I'm glad that Wolfson really tells us that here in this book.

The foil to Ambrosia, Pallas, was a little too preachy for me, but with Raymond helping to balance her out and making her palatable, I was able to stand it. As well as the identity of Ambrosia's killer in this life cycle, those foils and antagonist characters were a really nice touch. At first, I really wasn't into Pallas as a foil because of that preachiness, but Raymond going into the mix really kind of mellowed her out, and made her a more solid and believable antagonist to our protagonists. The epic final battle at the end was incredibly satisfying, to the point where I feel like this book has a solid sense of closure to it, yet, if there should be another book in the works, still has plenty of stuff to work with. And that's always a great thing, in case a standalone becomes a series book, and vice-versa.

Finally, there's the issue of revenge becoming a gateway drug (of sorts) into worse things. Ambrosia clearly shows that in each beginning piece to each section of the book, but my favorite quote really just hit home how desperate and angry she is (and eventually how desperate Alix, Stephanie, and Meg become) about her murder:

"I am for a different ratio...revenge with daily compounding interest." (ARC pg 172)

I absolutely loved that line, and it heralded the beginning of the end for Ambrosia and the rest of the girls so cleanly that I kind of just gave a golf clap (and not a sarcastic one, either). The story came together the most in these last few sections of the book after this quote. And that was really gratifying, because while the book was organized well and the transitions were good, the most action came at the end. And I love me my action scenes. (And did anyone else flash on the party/window scene from "The Craft" towards the end of this book? Just sayin'.)

Final verdict? This is definitely a really fun YA mythological retelling story, and definitely one to check out. "Furious" is out from Macmillan Children's on April 16, 2013, so be sure to check it out then!

(posted to goodreads, shelfari, and birthofanewwitch.wordpress.com)
Profile Image for Z (Through The Inked Pages).
77 reviews9 followers
June 13, 2013
Rating: 1.5 stars

Contains mild spoilers

Checklist for an ideal read:
-Badass Greek goddesses
-A taste for vengeance
-Vivid details
-Awesome plot
-A mysterious leader

So we have the vivid details, and we have the Greek goddesses, but where is the bad in badass? And the taste for vengenace? So explain to me why "Furious" by Jill Wolfson only met two 1.5 of the five instead of all? Oh wait, allow me to do the honors.

I had high hopes for this, even though the average rating is extremely low. Still, I expected this to be terrifying, and the girls to be total badasses. WRONG. Wolfson made Alix, Meg, and Stephanie seem as if they judge others' actions based on their own PMS. And they weren't even ugly until the end; all they had were greenish hues to their skin and BO. The Furies, or Erinyes, aren't supposed to have defined curves, a rocking body, and flawless hair. I expected these "goddesses" to be in character (minus the serpents obviously...not really). The only thing Wolfson succeeded in was the essence of penalties by the Furies.

The characters are not likable. Ambrosia was honestly a little brat who did not come off as powerful whatsoever, Ms. Pallas seemed too old to function and was not intimidating, and Raymond was too whiny. And they're too staged.

When Alix, Meg, and Stephanie found out they were the Furies, their reactions and discussions were over-the-top. Let me provide some examples.

"You're telling us that...it was us...We're witches? Yeah!"
"Witches? Of course you're not witches!...Have you smelled any witch's brew? That's not something you'd likely miss. Talk about stinking to high heaven, a mix between old Brussels sprouts and dried menstrual blood."

Okay, PAUSE. I totally missed the last part. Dried menstrual blood? Is this for real?

"Is anyone here cackling? Does anyone even have a warty nose?"
Alix's hand dashes to her face. "I've got a big zit—a big, juicy one on the chin."
What the hell did I just read?
Alix stays with the subject. "So if we're not witches, how about vampires?" Her voice sounds light, hopeful.

Okay first, the witch description was petty and childish. Wolfson made witches sound awfully ridiculous. That description literally makes these witches look like total badasses (if you don't know about these witches, then I'm sorry):

And I can't forget Brendon. Oh, Brendon. I thought I was going to like him, but he was...a dork. There are no more words for him. Not the cutesy oh-I-want-to-pinch-your-cheeks dork. He was a complete loser. End of story.

Now Wolfson's writing was great, to an extent. I recall reading only the words "says" and "asks" when http://writeworld.tumblr.com/saiddialogue. However, when those two aren't used, no words are:

"Are you nuts?" (Alix)
"What exactly are the Furies?" (Stephanie)
"How do we use this power?" (Alix again)
etc. etc.


To the already-closed door: "Permission to leave granted, Ambrosia."
Her smile is as bright as her voice: "Our own battle of the bands."
etc. etc.

Other than that mess, everything's good. I love vivid details (excluding pointless ones about dried menstrual blood and juicy zits). Wolfson captured me in the setting with strong descriptions and imagery. The punishments by the Furies were nearly perfection; it felt as if I were the Furies invading the target's mind. I only wish there was more to it than making them see the wrong in what they did to the point where they lose their mind.

The plot has potential. Vengeance for wrongdoings? That should make a reader tear a book off the shelf, right? Well, this was too predictable and reminded me of a fan-fiction. Adding the characters to the plot really makes this book fall downhill.

To be honest, I really have nothing else to say about Furious. I had a lot to say when I thought this to be 3 stars. But as I reviewed and thought about this book, I gave it 2 stars. After thinking about the characters and scenes, I felt 2 stars was too generous. This is just me, though. I don't expect you to not read it. Maybe you like reading about witch's brew that smells like dried menstrual blood, maybe you don't. Overall, I laughed at some parts. I wasn't completely entertained, but Furious was entertaining enough for me to finish it, even though it took me quite a while.
Profile Image for Donna.
1,180 reviews
April 4, 2013
How did we end up here?

The publicist sent me an email asking me if I’d like to take a look at this one. The blurb sounded interesting enough but what really roped me in what ‘seaside California town.’ What can I say? I’m a sucker for coastal California settings. I can’t help it. A short time later the book came to be in my possession.

Okay, book. You've got 50 pages. Go!

The setting is Santa Cruz without actually being named Santa Cruz. I love it already. The voice had me pretty much hooked in as well. It had a little bit of a quirk to it, was a little bit of an outcast without diving into the Woe is Me Sea and the plot really started to take off as soon as the pages started turning so I really didn’t have much to complain about. There’s your stereotypical high school bull going on but at least it fuels into the plot itself instead of just mood setting because that’s what it SHOULD be.

What worked . . .

The fact that it was a Santa Cruz setting. I could picture everything the author threw into her setting although it seemed like she rearranged the street layout a little bit. That’s okay. I survived. When I read the author blurb and saw that Wolfson actually lives in Santa Cruz IT MADE SO MUCH MORE SENSE. Ah, love. Love Santa Cruz.

I did like the pseudo-set-up of the story being a play with the stasimons by Ambrosia and her acting as somewhat of a narrator when a scene dimmed. The story went further than I though it would with the Furies aspect and how far the girls took it so I give Wolfson kudos for that. She really didn’t mince words when it came to laying down the Furies law and I kept expecting to find more doubt in Meg but she really kept it away for a longer than normal amount of time. Almost to the point where I started questioning whether the girls would see any repercussions for what they were doing. I just needed to be patient.

I also liked how eroded the girls became as the story went on and their powers grew. They didn’t transform into Ambrosia-like beauties although there was certainly some lead-in to that happening. The story as a whole ended up being a little moralistic but I didn’t feel brow-beaten by it. It worked within the confines of the story and the ending left a hook that I liked. It didn’t open up this book to be more than a stand alone but ended with an ellipses. This isn’t over type of deal. A happy, rather peaceful ending with a but. My kind of ending.

What didn't work . . .

Nothing that really stood out although I didn’t find the book wonderful enough to write home about, you know? It was okay, entertaining enough and I enjoyed it while I read it but I’m not about to reach out and read it again any time soon, even if it is steeped in Santa Cruz.

I wasn’t thrilled how the girls’ antagonist came out and was developed. I felt that came in rather late, was left to simmer for too long, ended up blowing up at the end and it was over too quickly. There was so much build up for the girls getting their power and using it and I know it’s told from Meg’s point of view but the hiccup in their function just ended up showing up and that was it. Sure it was sprinkled throughout the story but it was shoved so far into the background that I wish it had more of a presence from the beginning instead of something that was so easily brushed away.

And in the end . . .

The book as a book fulfilled its purpose in entertaining me while I was reading it. Really I think I loved reading more about the non-Santa Cruz Santa Cruz than I did the story itself but that’s okay. I thought it was a good twist on Greek legend and I liked how pertinent it was made to modern life. It just wasn’t outstanding. I wish I could have liked it more than I did but I did like it. I’m just not flying off my seat about it.
Profile Image for Mary  BookHounds .
1,301 reviews1,783 followers
April 28, 2013

How many times have you wanted to just get revenge and take out your fury at the injustices you have suffered quietly? Well, these three young teens go for it even though they find there are consequences to your actions. Meg, quietly stoic, is a foster child. living with daily abuse from her guardian, who refuses to feed or clothe her properly even though the state pays her. Stephanie, an outspoken activist, who weeps for the earth and all of the damage that is being done to it. Alix is an anger surfer girl, outraged by the bullies that abound in the sea. Together they channel their anger and seek revenge on those who have wronged them and others.

This is a smart and updated version of the Greek Furies mythology of three females who were put on earth to avenge the weak and those causing evil. These girls are a modern spin with each one tackling current issues of ecology, bullies, and the poor. I really enjoyed the connection these girls had together and how that bond made them stronger. Although they soon realized that the power could be used for evil as well. The characters are all nicely developed and I would really like to read more about them.
Profile Image for Catie.
60 reviews13 followers
April 19, 2013
Well again, This cover is just so awesome. These girls on the cover actually look like the mean business. I will admit that I have been on a mythical kick in my reading style ever since I read Runes by Ednah Walters. So when I learned that Furious is about the Fates, I had to get a copy. I am so glad that I did, I think Furious maybe one of my favorite novels of the year so far.

I loved the fast paced plot and the original storyline, also it was quite refreshing to see that the characters are so different from each other but have one common goal and that is to get revenge. Furious, is a great stand alone book, not to long and not to short. I was so happy that it was stand alone, so now I do not have to wait a year to see what happens next. Furious, is beautifully written and I have no bad feedback at all. I loved Stephanie, Meg and Alix as characters.

Well if you want a novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat, keep you turning the pages furiously and enjoy a stand alone book then this Furious is the novel for you. Go out and pre order your copy so you can start reading, you will not be disappointed.
Profile Image for Anka.
201 reviews6 followers
May 25, 2017
Well that was.... really strange.
Profile Image for Sara I.
843 reviews
July 3, 2013
As a rule I tend to love mythology and enjoy the modern day recapturing of the stories of heroes and gods and triumphs. When I learned this book was about mythology that was the reason that I picked it up. I'm pretty sure I glanced at the back but didn't read a thing more about it. I shoulda read more about it. Really. I hope you read this. Even though it really won't make that much sense. Because this is going to be a rambling review.

Meg is an orphan in a bad foster home. The cat gets treated better than her for crying out loud! Then she had to go up and blurt out that stupid sentence about her golfing coupon to one of the surfer group guys...who she may or may not be crushing on. He just let her hang there. It was humiliating. She has one friend in the school and is just so made at everyone else. And fed up. But she's still surprised when she discovers she stood up in class and said she hated everyone. She heard this music and she had been stewing silently...then she had just said it. Without realizing it. Another humiliation. But not for long. Ambrosia is a beautiful girl, a popular one. And she selects Meg and two other girls and starts being really weird. When things change, just a little in Meg's life she knows something is up. Ambrosia says that Meg and the other two girls are furies. And they can bring justice to those who have gone unpunished. It's their job. So they start testing out their new powers, they can make people feel the shame and pain they've caused others and make them sorry for it. They can punish them and make them beg. Too quickly they start to go to far and have lost what they call justice into what is so obviously revenge and bitterness.

Ramble:So I usually like mythology. But no this time. This time the story fell flat. I might have dropped it. All about pain and misery leading to others being punished because of it and the furies lack of sight to see what they were really doing. It bugged me. Sure the first third or so (maybe) was okay-ish. I still didn't like it but it was bearable. But the rest? Made me want to hurl and scream at the characters all at the same time! Really you don't see how this could be a mistake? How he could really have not meant it? That chewing too loudly isn't a crime? Or how this girl just messed up a little? Or that all you're doing is wrong and a mistake just like the mistakes you are punishing them for? Oh man. It was so sad. And really depressing. Because all the mistakes are being brought up to haunt the people. And the girls did have issues in their lives that were really not great at all. But there are other ways to deal with it than revenge. There was barely anything I liked. Now that I'm done? I like that. But nothing else really. *considers* Ummmmmm yeah. There were two characters (and at the beginning, Meg) that I liked okay but they didn't make for the rest of the book! And they were a little annoying at times as well. *sighs* I just really didn't like this book. It was stupid how out of control the furies got. It was depressing. And the whole point of the story was weak. About how justice and revenge are different, yada yada. It wasn't an enjoyable read :/

Content:There were some crude jokes, cruel pranks, drinking, smoking pot, the whole revenge and punishment that was a little violent. They almost kill a couple people. There is a make out scene and a sorta sex scene although it's hard to tell, it mainly intense making out. And then language wise there were 70 cuss words. Some were minor but there was an f thrown in too. And some mythology and magical powers. Another thing I didn't like, Athena was thrown in there sadly and I hated her. She was just yucko. And she's my favorite from greek mythology :/ Yup....
Profile Image for Brittany S..
1,498 reviews697 followers
August 5, 2016
2.5 stars

Initial Impressions: Really nowhere near what I hoped it would be. Loved the mythology involved and accurate from what I know of it but it did not make a very good translation into YA.

Review originally posted on The Book Addict's Guide: I’ve always been interested in mythology even since I was a youngster, so I’ve really been into trying to pick up mythology retellings lately. When I hear about FURIOUS, I was like “HMMM. The Furies myth redone? I’m curious!” Sadly, curious was about as far as it went. I made it about halfway through before I found myself reading quickly, forcing myself to finish.

For those of you that aren’t familiar with the myth, the gist of it is that the three Furies were born from the blood and anger of the god Uranus after he was… erm, castrated (I can see why he was pissed) and they are responsible for the eye-for-and-eye type of justice in the world. In the retelling of FURIOUS, they’re three high school teenagers who are “discovered” to have the powers of the Furies deep within them and when the three hone into their skills, they can bring the high school jerks to their knees, right the wrongs of their own home lives, and bring even bigger justices to the world.

It’s hard to judge and say that this could have been done better since I’m not sitting here writing my own retelling, but I just didn’t feel like this interpretation of the myth came off well. All of the specifics and background of the myth were included in the book so it’s definitely thorough and accurate, but as a retelling, I think I wanted it to be LESS accurate. It was so integrated in the original myth that I feel like it almost got boxed in and pieces were forced to fit together that didn’t really go together. Some of the characters felt forced, the situations were the Furies use their power seemed a little silly, and I just felt like as a whole, it didn’t really come together to make one cohesive story. Personally, I would have liked to see a looser interpretation of the myth to fit more of a high school setting since it was drawn up for YA versus a more literal retelling and having some of it feel unauthentic to its setting.

As far as characters go, I didn’t really feel a connection to any of them. Except for maybe Raymond, the main character Meg’s best friend… And now that I’m thinking about it, maybe because he wasn’t a part of the myth so he wasn’t forced into a specific role? The development of the Furies’ powers and how they discover them didn’t feel natural for me and Meg as our main character wasn’t likable. I sympathized with her for the most part, but I mean, they’re FURIES. They’re mad, they want revenge, they want justice. It’s hard to connect with main characters who are basically pictured like bad guys who think they’re good guys.

FURIOUS just wasn’t for me. I rushed through the second half of the book so I could finish it, but really, I just wasn’t interested. I actually found myself not caring what happened to the end but it was going by pretty quickly so I figured I might as well finish. This was close to being a DNF for me but I pushed through it.
Profile Image for Giselle.
1,057 reviews907 followers
April 12, 2016
An Advanced Reader Copy was provided by the publisher for review. Quotes pulled from the ARC may be incorrect and may be subject to change.

With beauty comes power. Imagine the Greek Furies as teenagers in our modern society and you'll have Furious as your guidebook. This is a simple retelling of the mythological characters we all know to love (and hate). There is definitely cause for discussion with the captivating characters who transform right before our eyes. Especially my favourite transition of shy girl into a powerful megalomaniac.

I disliked the stereotypical labels and prejudices found in the book. Maybe since I see it portrays on television, I get annoyed seeing it in my favourite medium. Or I also dislike the fact that bullying occurs in real life and I don't like having it shown in books because I believe books set a better example for all of humanity. But I'm getting ahead of myself. The book delivers on my expectations and I was highly entertained but I was also looking for something more. Maybe more twists and turns than I could count?

Overall, if you love drama and intrigue thrown into a high school teenager's life, read this! If not, you can definitely pass on.


“How can you not care? How can anyone not feel?” (103)

“People in power don't like sharing their power.” (131)

“Without forgiveness, it gets stuck in your throat. Justice becomes revenge—endless, hateful, spiteful, soul-rotting revenge.” (169)

“My friends do things, and I just go along with them. Sometimes I don't think for myself.” (184)

“I like being the me I always wanted to be, the me I always hoped was buried inside.” (238)

“When you make others live in misery, you wind up living in it, too.”—Raymond (282)
Profile Image for Jessica.
329 reviews14 followers
March 19, 2013
A modern take on girl-power-gone-wrong, Furious, Jill Wolfson’s latest novel, as a dark, exciting read.

The story follows Meg, a foster child who takes a lot of bs from a lot of people and seems to lack the ability to stand up for herself. She muddles through life with one friend and a mediocre existence. Until one day she decides she’s not going to take it, sort of. An outburst in the middle of history class leaves her confused and in a new circle of friends: Stephanie, Alix, and Ambrosia. Stephanie and Alix have their own axes to grind and Ambrosia is their mentor, guiding the girls along the path as the Furies. The Furies quickly rule the school and dish out justice wherever they see fit to whomever they deem deserving of it.

Gods and goddesses have been covered in almost every way possible, so I found Wolfson’s take on the Furies very refreshing. These ladies are often overlooked in updates on mythology and I can’t think of anything actually devoted to them. Their anger is palpable; you can feel it rippling off the page as they sing their song and work their magic.

Some parts of the story are a little predictable. I had no problems guessing the real identity of an undercover character and it was easy to see how certain plot points were going to work out. But, the story could have been purposely written that way to show how the Furies were blinded by their anger and unable to recognize the obvious things going on around them. The story certainly underscored a personal belief of mine: being angry takes up way too much energy, so just be positive and move on. Predictable or not, I burned through Furious’ pages, because I couldn’t wait to see what would happen next.
Profile Image for Gwen Hubner.
1 review2 followers
April 23, 2013
I found Furious to be an incredibly satisfying YA book. Wolfson meshes together my favorite genres in a creative way that I have yet to find elsewhere. Furious is primarily a high school drama, amped up by some campy fantasy in the vein of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with a little bit of Greek mythology and Western Civ. history on the side.
I often find that YA fantasy can take itself too seriously. I also think it tends to lack character development. What is so refreshing about Furious, is that it does neither of these things. Wolfson clearly put a lot of time into shaping the main characters, and best of all she kept me laughing the whole time. Raymond, for instance-- the dorky, violin-playing genius-- is probably one of my favorite characters of all time. So while I got the excitement from the big fantasy drama, I also felt very connected to the characters--something that is rare when reading traditional fantasy.
For these reasons, Furious is truly a fabulous read. If you are looking for a quirky, funny, and exciting read (and really, who isn't?) than read this book!
Profile Image for Book Sushi.
60 reviews6 followers
May 8, 2013
I was sooo excited about this book and it failed me big time! We meet Meg, Alix and Stephanie who are all loners at highschool. not very popular, always get picked on. Then we have Ambrosia who is popular, smart, authorative and explains to them that they are the 3 Furies. They have some explanations about what the Furies are but thats about where the greek myth ends...all this is about teenagers given a terrible power and taking revenge out on those that hurt them, called them names,ect. Jill Wolfson really had a good concept but maybe without the usual teenage angst issues.

Basically there is no stopping human nature and there is no black and white to wrong and right. sometimes there is only grey.
Profile Image for Katlyn.
1,299 reviews42 followers
June 20, 2017
It was alright... the characters weren't all that great though. I didn't feel like I got to know them at all. They seemed like stereotypes. Stephanie, for example, was an environmentalist who hated corporations and her own mother, a real estate developer. And I feel like all the author did for Raymond was use the typical guy best friend cheat sheet and stick some words from a thesaurus in as much as she could. Oh, and of course poor little orphan Meg was wronged by everyone ever. It also bothered me that there were seemingly no shades of grey. The twins who dressed a bit slutty were apparently just as bad as the guys who bullied a developmentally disabled kid. The idea itself was cool though. I liked the idea of a few girls who punish those who wrong them, it just could have been implemented better. 2.5/5
Profile Image for Strix.
48 reviews
May 23, 2023
How do I rate a book I love and hate?

The good:
-Meg has a strong voice, and a distinct personality.
-Raymond is perfectly done, he definitely deserves his own book telling his side
-the interludes are great, Ambrosia is great
-the middle up until the last sixth is more or less perfect
-Ms. Pallas was great (until the last few pages)
-the character arcs
-the epilogue/what happened besides Ambrosia/Athena's ending

The bad
-the endless misogyny Meg has to basically everyone besides her friends
-the last fight's resolution. What the heck was that?
-the first third. Couldn't stand Meg.
-Stephanie. Stephanie, Stephanie, Stephanie.
-the Greek myth integration. I feel like, among other things, Ambrosia should have been Eris.
-I wish Alix had had more development, she's fine but not memorable
Profile Image for Allison Church.
90 reviews1 follower
May 3, 2019
I'm a big fan of Greek mythology. I love that they took well known minor goddesses and modernized a story for them.
However I am still confused as to whether or not Ambrosia was who she claimed. I am also very confused about the end battle.
Profile Image for Janeen.
50 reviews
September 17, 2017
I loved the concept of this book, but it wasn't executed well. The ending was anti-climatic. All just ended and wrapped up quickly.
Profile Image for Tashi.
78 reviews10 followers
August 25, 2020
3.5, like the story, really liked the end, didn’t like Meg
Profile Image for Tamara Geraeds.
Author 57 books88 followers
March 19, 2017
It's a good concept really, it just has too many almost boring parts. Everything just takes too long. There are great parts where you want to keep reading, but then there's an equally long part where not much happens and you lose interest.
The story goes up and down like this.
If all the boring parts had been left out I would've given this 4 stars, because the main story, the main idea, is really good. Too bad.
Profile Image for Nick.
159 reviews16 followers
March 9, 2017
I wrote in an update that this book was not headed for a happy ending. Despite the fact that I generally much prefer happy endings, this was for the good - with the themes of the cost of revenge and this particular interpretation of the furies it was a necessary raising of the stakes, a turning point for the furies that marks their transition into the beasts of myth - and this is what the author used it for, with physical as well as emotional changes being displayed.

However, two pages later she undid the key part of this "raising of the stakes", hand waved it away and spent the rest of the book desperately trying to get back what she'd just destroyed - any chance of the story having real impact.

For the rest of the story there were no real surprises, just some angry wish fulfillment and a rather trite denouement that led to a weakly happy ending Fairly paint by numbers and quite disappointing.

It wasn't a bad story, just mediocre, made worse by almost reaching for something more, but losing its nerve and settling for the candy-floss alls-well.
Profile Image for Kai.
407 reviews128 followers
April 18, 2013
Review posted at Amaterasu Reads

They were girls with these in common: hate, anger and resentment building up inside them for years. There's Alix the surfer chick who only wants to protect her brother Simon, who was differently abled, from the bullies. Stephani, who wants to change the world and make people more aware of Mother Earth. Meg, shuffled from one foster home to another, dumped by her parents to the system and currently living a miserable life with a crappy foster parent. They all had their shares of hardships in life, and now they want revenge for the unfairness of it all. Enter Ambrosia, seemingly perfect, popular, rich and powerful. She will help these three girls and unleash the power they have, but at what cost?

Of all three girls, I sympathize with Meg the most. Meg was the only one of the three who seem to still have that capacity for kindness in her, where no matter how her spirit was crushed or how much people wronged her, she can still forgive. Both Alix and Stephanie were already too jaded with life. Alix's motivation is something I can still understand, having to protect her brother when no one else could, but with Stephanie's I was a little unconvinced. Her personality and problems were something I couldn't easily connect with, especially when you compare them to what Alix and Meg had to go through. Meg has always been the key to the Furies' success, to the fulfillment of Ambrosia's fervent wish. But despite of that, there were times where I just got so frustrated with how the three of them behaved. It's a good thing Raymond was there. Sweet, funny, smart and witty Raymond. He was the voice of reason, the one who is surprisingly the most forgiving, most trusting person in the book. His hardships were just as harrowing as the three, having been a smart, sometimes know-it-all gay high school teen, but he was just this amazing person that kept everything from going worse than they already are. He's my favorite character in this book, hands down!

Revenge. It's like a drug, an addictive, adrenaline rush that comes once fulfilled. But when does one stop? When one has been avenged for the wrongdoings another person has done to them, will that be the end of it? If you have the power to bring justice to others, why not be the savior? Revenge, highly addictive, dangerous, toxic. It destroys you, eats away inside and consumes you until it's all you can think and breathe of. Consequences be damned, you will get it, no matter what it takes. Revenge transforms you into the very thing you are afraid of, you become the bully, you become the monster, as it was clearly illustrated with what happened to Alix, Stephanie and Meg. It renders you blind to all the things that matter, until it's too late. My heart went out for Meg and what happened to her and Brendon. It was another nick in the heart of someone who was too consumed by revenge to clearly see what's fake and what's not, when it's love and when it's pretend.

Furious is a story that started out so simple, until it becomes a chilling read that will challenge the readers to think hard and understand just what is deemed right and wrong, blurring the lines between doing good and bad. A masterful storytelling by Jill Wolfson, Furious had me anticipating every turn of the story as I go through each chapter, bracing myself for the good, the bad, and the ugly. Furious explores the different facets of humanity, not necessarily the good but the bad sides as well. How much has this world been corrupted? How much of the world has been ruled by greed, envy and the incessant thirst for power? These heavy themes wove themselves into the story and was made into one captivating novel by Jill Wolfson. Interesting, thrilling and an absorbing read.
Profile Image for Jay.
514 reviews369 followers
April 19, 2013
Actual rating: 3.5/5 stars

I have read my fair share of greek mythology centered around The Furies. I love Elizabeth Mile's The Fury trilogy but what is different about Furious is that it is told from the POV of one of the Furious, not the victims. That alone had me really curious to read it. For the most part Furious was a very entertaining and interesting read, the only downside is that the main character had a ton of flaws and the lack of a revenge plot.

As with most of the greek mythologies I read, the protagonist doesn't initially know that her world is a greek mythology retelling, and this book is no exception. Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with that. However my main problem was with the main protagonist's logic and actions as well as how the whole revenge plot was handled. Meg is a foster kid, her foster mom is the reason GIFs like this are made:


Her foster mother treated Meg like a slave, she treated her cat 100x better. I could totally understand Meg's anger towards her as well as all the previous pent up anger and hatred for life in general because of what she went through in the foster care system. However, I just wished we delved a bit more in her past, I did get the overall picture, but I just wanted to know more, to really sympathize and invest in Meg's wellbeing. Since this is based on The Furies, another two girls were introduced to complete the trio. The other two, Alix and Stephanie, we know very little about and also find out very little about in the end. There is also an additional character in this novel and it is Ambrosia. Ambrosia is like the manager of a sports team. She was actually the one that brought the three girls together and introduced them to each other. I was able to forget about the lack of character depth because I believed that was when things get good, which is through their revenge.

Unfortunately, I have to say that their revenge was very bland and the same type of revenge was used for every single person they chose as their victim. This revenge scheme consisted of chanting a few songs while holding hands and making the target, i.e.: victim, start repenting and begging for forgiveness from the person/people he/she tormented/bullied/pried on. This happened every single time. The best part in the retelling of The Furies is the revenge. I was so disappointed.. I still expected something different every time they targeted someone else.. but that didn't happen.

I have to point out that even with all these weaknesses I still enjoyed the novel. It was a very fun and fast read. I quite enjoyed how the trio's power and need for revenge turned them into such ugly souls, worse than the people they initially wanted to take revenge on. This book isn't perfect at all but it is a decent greek mythology, especially since a ton of research done by the girls is actually mentioned so you do learn a ton. The ending had a big showdown and while I don't believe everyone who deserved punishment got what they deserved, it was a fairly good ending. I would definitely recommend it to greek mythology fans who want a quick read and the retelling told from The Furies POV.
Profile Image for Chapter by Chapter.
690 reviews442 followers
May 18, 2013
The Furies…How many of you are fascinated as I am with these three powerful woman who seek out vengeance upon those who have wronged individuals who were unable to fend for themselves? There was always something about the Furies that have piqued my interest. How they go on the hunt and instill their own justice upon the world.

When I came across Furious by Jill Wolfson, I was ready to dive head first into a tale that promised to be full of power and judgment. Throw in the fact that it’s three high school girls who are basically social outcasts who become the “chosen ones” who will personify the Furies of mythological proportions.

With that in mind, I was hoping that the vengeance that these girls craved would be full of pain and suffering towards their fellow classmates and adults who have wronged them. But instead, I find three girls who have a huge chip on their shoulders, and the way in which they started to make these people pay for their wrong doings starts off with a song. Something about that just didn’t sit well with me.

Throw in the one who puts them all together, who goes by the name Ambrosia, who apparently is supposed to be a fellow high school student, but instead acts and speaks in a way that is not at all teen. I found myself having a difficult time believing that the kids at Hunter High would scramble to gain her affection and her notice. But what I did enjoy about Ambrosia, was her voice. Her voice was full of vengeance and wrath. You knew what her agenda was, and that she would stop at nothing to get what she wants. Her voice during the Stasimons in the book did exactly what it was supposed to do. It built up the story, and summarized what the true intent of the chapters that we read were about.

The girls chosen to be the Furies, Meg, Stephanie, and Alix were not exactly what I thought would be “Fury material”. Sure, they have many that have wronged them and were treated unjust, but I felt like there was not enough anger in them to bring forth the wrath of the Furies.

I went through most of the book hoping that I would see the power of the Furies, only to witness a mild comparison to the way other Furies from other books would show their power. It appears that the way in which the Furies portrayed in Furious is by messing with people’s minds. By burrowing deep into their inner psyche and showing their victims the way in which they treated others. It wasn’t until near the end of the book where the mind melt that they do (by their siren song) actually does some semblance of vengeance. Sadly, I wish that it was like this through most of the book.

Perhaps the girls had to wean themselves into their new found power? I wanted the hate and fury that Ambrosia personified to be in the very girls that ensure that justice was brought.

For those who have yet to read a book dealing with the Furies, Furious by Jill Wolfson may be the beginner book to ease you into their power. Although the power that is portrayed in the book is not as vicious as I had hoped it would be, it was still interesting to see the twist in the book where there are goddesses on earth and battling for power.
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