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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

ANTIGODDESS by Kendare Blake

Ok, so I missed last week.  Blame it on Thanksgiving - hope you all had a great one!  And I don't see any upcoming releases this week, so I figured I'd tell you about the book I just finished.  You all remember Kendare Blake, author of Anna Dressed in Blood, right?  When I met her last year in Decatur, she told me about this mythology-based novel she was writing and I about died.  You know me and mythology.  Well, the book is out and I've read it.

ANTIGODDESS by Kendare Blake
Old Gods never die…

Or so Athena thought. But then the feathers started sprouting beneath her skin, invading her lungs like a strange cancer, and Hermes showed up with a fever eating away his flesh. So much for living a quiet eternity in perpetual health.
Desperately seeking the cause of their slow, miserable deaths, Athena and Hermes travel the world, gathering allies and discovering enemies both new and old. Their search leads them to Cassandra—an ordinary girl who was once an extraordinary prophetess, protected and loved by a god. 
These days, Cassandra doesn’t involve herself in the business of gods—in fact, she doesn’t even know they exist. But she could be the key in a war that is only just beginning. 
Because Hera, the queen of the gods, has aligned herself with other of the ancient Olympians, who are killing off rivals in an attempt to prolong their own lives. But these anti-gods have become corrupted in their desperation to survive, horrific caricatures of their former glory. Athena will need every advantage she can get, because immortals don’t just flicker out. 
Every one of them dies in their own way. Some choke on feathers. Others become monsters. All of them rage against their last breath.

The Goddess War is about to begin.

I admit, it was a bit difficult to relate to Athena at first.  She is cold, calculating.  What you might expect of a war goddess, but not a relatable YA lead.  Cassandra, on the other hand, I quickly identified with.  She has this awesome relationship with Aiden, a great brother, and a really cool bestie (she's captain of the hockey team and can kick some serious butt).

I really enjoyed the irony of the way each of the gods and goddesses were meeting their fate.  Kendare was clever with her death sentences and they were believable and often horrific at the same time.

What kept me going most in the story was the plot and pacing.  The stakes just kept getting higher for Athena, Hermes, Cassandra (and the others who aren't mentioned in the description, so I won't spoil it for you.  Not every god or goddess makes an appearance though - I will tell you that.)  I kept thinking, I don't know how they can survive this.  The tension kept me flipping the pages and I stayed up way late reading it.

Because the gods basically lack any power, you don't get much of a mythology feel in the classical sense, but there are plenty of references to the Trojan War and the roles everyone played there.

Overall, I really enjoyed the book. I thought it was unique and fast-paced.  If you like books with loads of action, a dash of romance, and a side of mythology, I recommend Antigoddess.


Catherine Stine said...

Blake is an awesome writer. LOVED Anna Dressed in Blood. I will check this book out!

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