Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

The Goddess Test (Goddess Test, #1)

Paperback293 pages
Published April 19th 2011 by Harlequin

Premise: Ganded 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 received a copy of Goddess Interrupted to review from NetGalley, so I purchased this copy from Barnes & Noble on my Nook to read first. I am currently reading Goddess Interrupted. :-) Yay! The following review is my opinion.

My Review:

What an interesting, fast read!!

In one way of lookin' at it, this story is a dreamy  Beauty and the Beast meets Arranged Marriages. I love the idea of Kate adapting to a confusing, frustrating, yet romantic Mythological situation – love it! And I love it when  the hero thinks she can beat the odds even when circumstances are being manipulated. Not to mention, getting Greek gods to hang out in a mansion and daring her to fall in love with Hades, of all people, is just TOTALLY AWESOME!!

I enjoyed being inside Kate’s head and she puzzled everything out and reacted. Kate is a great character. She's mostly decisive, although deep, with sorrow, and intelligent. The book is full of hints, some reveal a lot of the story, and some kept me guessing. The Prologue is a fun, fun hint to start off the book! (You Prologue-skippers, read this one!!) There were enough things (ie. people) that I didn’t guess to keep drawing me onward until the very end, which is fun. 

I love the complexity of other characters, but I don't trust any of 'em.... not Mom, not Henry, not buddy James, not Ava..... not any of them! They have layers of power mixed generously with ulterior motives. I trusted them less the more I read... which is absolutely delightful.  

Now for some spoiler discussion-ing. 

I was not always content. When Ava died at the beginning, the death was so graphic; it seemed larger than the impact it had on Kate. I mean, over the space of a short month, she forgot! Something as bad as that tends to burn into someone’s memory (even if I was only reading it).

Which led to my next struggle – the sadness of death after grasping the concept of Henry. If Henry is Hades, god of the underworld, and he travels anywhere in it he likes, either side of DEATH… and he’s looking for a wife to work with him to do the same, why is death so horrible? It makes even less sense when everyone at the mansion is already dead, adding depths of dead (or were they?!). Like... why go to the gravesite? Kate even realizes the sadness she feels is related to a change in the relationship, not an absence. So there was some emotional chain-yankin’ that ached without probable cause. (I thought.)

Basically, DEATH was a really big concept and was sometimes weird. It was either too trivial or too traumatic and sometimes both at the same time.  I hope to understand more of the concept in the next book. I am ready to believe all the drama if I can see more reason, like someone unreachable beyond death, for example.

I am not happy about Kate being sent away for six months after getting married!!  I think even “mom” would encourage her daughter to spend her first “free” six months with her new love, cultivating it into something deeper and stronger instead of running off with a “friend”. I think the ending of Book 1 is a setup for trouble in Book 2. And wise Kate might have known that. Rather than a victorious Woop! at the end, I was highly suspicious of brewing trouble. (How exciting!)

End of spoilerings.

Overall this book is a creative, inventive fast read. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I can see myself rereading it, especially now that I know who’s who. The end leaves a lingering tension that makes me excited to dive into The Goddess Interrupted. (There’s a 1.5 Novella, too… The Goddess Hunt!)

Cover Commentary:  I like this cover a lot. She's wearing white, she's in a forest - the leaves don't look comfy, so it's like she's collapsed there for some reason, somewhat victimized, but not frightened. Her eyes are narrowed like she's not gonna just take whatever-it-is. And there's the matrix-looking thing peaking out from the undergrowth hinting at the layers of deception. Is she even in a forest? I like it. Pretty colors, too.

My Rating:  4 - Pretty Darn Good Book

The Goddess Hunt (Goddess Test, #1.5)
The Goddess Hunt
Goddess Test 1.5
Coming March 1st, 2012
Click the links under the books to add them to your Goodreads Wishlist!!
Goddess Interrupted (Goddess Test, #2)
Goddess Interrupted
Goddess Test 2
Coming March 27th, 2012
Buy it now or pre-order from Amazon:


Aimee Carter  

About the Author:

Aimée Carter was born and raised in Michigan, where she currently resides. She started writing fan fiction at eleven, began her first original story four years later, and hasn’t stopped writing since. Her first novel for young adults, THE GODDESS TEST was published by Harlequin Teen on April 26th, 2011.
The sequel, GODDESS INTERRUPTED, will follow in 2012.

(Nearly) BREAKING NEWS!!!!

Aimee Carter is having an ARC contest announced on her blog:

Leave a comment on her blog after Like-ing her FB page and leaving a comment... and be entered to win an ARC of Goddess Interrupted!!!!  Yay!!!  (Thx, Aimee!!)