Title: The Goddess Test
Author: Aimee Carter
Genre: Fantasy, YA, romance
Series? Yes – Book 1 in The Goddess Test Series
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Rating: 1/6 – I had to force myself to finish it
Synopsis from cover: Every girl who has taken the test has died. Now it’s Kate’s turn.
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.
If she fails…
My Initial Thoughts/Rambling: All right, if you saw my Top Ten Tuesday post from last week, you’ll know that the word “dark” used in describing a male is a huge red flag for me. Read that third paragraph again. See that flag? Yes, it was waving frantically, tried to act like my lighthouse in the murky waters of The Goddess Test. Nevertheless, I forged on. It was more like dragging my half dead self, uphill, in the middle of a hurricane, with weights tied to my ankles…
I usually have a compulsion to finish series, just on the principle that I read at 800 words per minute, so even if I dislike a book I’ll be finished pretty quickly. I don’t think my book OCD is enough to keep me reading this series. I hate writing a bad review, but I just did not like this book at all. Possible Spoilers Ahead.
What did I think about the characters? There just wasn’t any depth to these characters at all. Which is okay, I guess, because sometimes I can ignore that and just read the story anyway. This time I couldn’t. Kate gave up six months of her life, promising anything, to bring a girl that she had known for hardly a week back from the dead. Said girl had also been extraordinarily rude from the get-go. I just didn’t understand the motivation behind Kate’s promises… Plus, I felt like Carter wanted me to just “get it” and roll with the relationship between Kate and her mother, as if we should base our ideas on the traditional mother-daughter relationship and not have to be shown what sort of relationship they really had.
And the concept and plot? Concept: I love Greek mythology. We covered that when I spammed you all with my Percy Jackson posts. So of course I was pretty excited to find another series that “follows” Greek mythology – but I guess we could use the phrase “borrows names and positions and very vague characteristics.” First of all, you have to forget that the Olympians are probably the haughtiest characters in literature – these gods and goddesses act as servants and guards in this reworking of the old myths. Second, other than carrying the same names as the Olympians, these characters are nothing like their inspirations. Since when is Demeter buddy-buddy with Hades? And would Hera really make her weapon of choice a small knife?? And Zeus is the one to give a test on lust??? The tiny history buff in me is raising her fist in protest.
Plot: It felt like an echo of Twilight – at least in the romance section. Kate/Bella falls madly in love with Henry/Edward with little to no prior relationship, and they profess their undying love for each other. It just wasn’t authentic. The one thing that really bothered me, in particular, was the seven tests that Kate is put up against. There’s nothing that indicates when she’s being tested – the majority of the book is, essentially, Kate walking around a mansion in fluffy dresses unfit for this time period. And then the ending was wrapped up too quickly… There wasn’t anything at stake, nothing to make me worry for Kate.
What about the writing style? I think I covered most of this above. I just didn’t like the spin Carter put on the Greek mythology, and the plot was lacking.
Anything else you’d like to add? I’m sure I’ll eventually read the other three books in this series – but who knows when. I foresee it being when I’m either a) sick and looped out on drugs, b) really, really bored, or c) want to read something that doesn’t engage my brain at all. Most likely a mix of all three.
Brooke’s Thoughts: Okay, if you’re like me who can read a book that’s similar to the Twilight complex and not be bothered by it then you’ll like this book. I definitely enjoy this book because it’s something nice to read after a long day of dance; isn’t super simple but it’s not so complex that you’re up at night trying do digest the book instead of sleeping. Kayla felt that there wasn’t much to make her worry about the character but if you can stick it out the books get better and more adventure filled. I personally really loved the book, especially the the Greek twist to it.