Christine's Reviews > The Goddess Test

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
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Jun 13, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: fantasy, romance, ya

I snatched this book up the instant I finished The Goddess Legacy, a sequel to this book which actually goes into the back story. The setup for this book fascinated me -- poor Hades (Henry), who had suffered from millenia of unrequited love with Persephone, is alone and wanting to simply fade away. But before he does, his fellow gods and goddesses want him to try to find someone who will keep him company...they asked for 100 years to find this someone.

Kate is his last chance.

This book is told from Kate's sole point of view, in the first person. Her mother is dying, they have moved to her mother's hometown for her final days, and Kate is attending a new high school to finish her senior year. The setup actually took a bit longer than I expected, but to sum it all up: Kate agrees to spend 6 months in Eden Manor with Henry (Hades, god of the underworld), in exchange for his extending her mother's life, and giving her time to say a proper good-bye (as if there is any such thing).

Since I read the prequel books first, I knew a lot more about what was going on than Kate did, but actually, I was still confused by why it was happening. It seemed to me that Kate's entire life was a lie, and that she simply accepted it.

As for Henry -- I fell in love with him in the prequel book and was eager for his HEA. In this regard, I'm glad I read the other book first, because I really didn't get Henry from Kate's point of view. If I had started with this book, I wouldn't have understood him at all. And as it happens, I don't understand the romance that is supposed to be taking place.

I like Kate just fine. I like Henry even more. They just don't see compatible. Henry is just about as old as time itself; a dark, brooding, deeply wounded individual who nevertheless wants to love and be loved. Kate, on the other hand, is a child. She's a nice person, even -- exceptional in her generosity. But the connection between them wasn't there.

Maybe it wasn't Kate, exactly. Maybe it was how she was written. An awful lot of this story was told rather than shown, especially when it came to relationship growth, and you simply can't do that in a romance novel. Granted, I haven't read a lot of teen romance, but I wouldn't expect the age of the intended audience to warrant this sort of exception. There were no moments between these two, the chemistry was weak, the descriptions of physical contact awkward and forced, and there was a sort of hollowness to even their underlying friendship.

I think this book would have benefited greatly from two things: More showing, and Henry's point of view. Maybe if I had been closer to his viewpoint, I could have seen how this girl affected him.

And after all that, I'm afraid I also found this book to be unconvincing. I didn't believe that after 11 girls, they still didn't know who had been killing them all. I didn't believe that Kate just accepted it, and didn't try to find out for herself. Actually, Kate was a pretty weak heroine. Everything in this book was done to her, not the other way around. She needed to have been a more active participant in the plot. And the ending was a bit of a cop out.

All of which leaves me a bit stuck. This is one of those times where I'm severely torn between a book's potential and what it actually delivered...do I read the sequels to see if they get better? I may. I liked the potential that much, and I continue to like Henry that much. I even like Kate...will their relationship become more convincing in sequels?
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