Tag Archives: mythology

Just Finished…Dreamless

 

   I really enjoyed the first book in this series when I read it earlier this year and in many ways Dreamless delivered just as well as Starcrossed did. I do like the way Angelini uses the traditional mythology: some very famous and obvious, such as Helen and Paris, the Oracle, etc. with others less common.

Certainly, I read the book quickly and found it difficult to put down (although the chapters are quite long, so that could explain it!) But I didn’t enjoy the dynamics between the characters as much as I did in the first book – I missed Helen and Lucas’s intensity and was quite put off by how their relationship developed/dwindled in Dreamless – I understand why this was necessary for the plot, but I still missed them.

There’s lots of romantic developments for other characters, which if you’ve read Starcrossed I’m sure you can guess at – they were fine, but I wasn’t overly fussed. The baddies are good though and I thought the overall plot was interesting. Angelini’s skirting around the idea of a love triangle towards the end of the book – I hope she doesn’t opt for this ‘go to’ plot device in Book 3 as it’s been done too much recently and I’ll probably switch right off.

Overall Verdict: 4* People who liked Starcrossed will enjoy this I’m sure – doesn’t suffer too badly from ‘second book syndrome’. For a mythology YA it’s one of the better series around. 

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Just Finished…The Goddess Test

The Goddess Test…Overall grade C+ “Must try harder”

I didn’t get a great feeling about The Goddess Test: within the first couple of chapters I realised I wasn’t overly fussed with our heroine Kate, which for a book told in the first person, from her perspective didn’t bode well. It’s not an awful book, there’s just not a lot happens tbh.

Normally I try to avoid spoilers in a review, but I think I may veer in that direction, so you have been warned 🙂

The premise of the book sounded good: dying mother (their relationship was nicely – if briefly – done) and mysterious chap who turns out to be Hades. But in the early scenes Kate lost me: after seeing the apparent miracle of seeing someone brought back to life, she just toddled off – not seeming to contemplate in any kind of depth what had actually happened – who would do that?

Kate had some strong shades of Bella Swan about her in my reading: lots of ‘selfless’ actions which weren’t especially well thought through. Having done Twilight already, I didn’t need a repeat of the character. And I felt that most of the characters were quite flat in all honesty.

As the book got going, I expected something to happen, but unfortunately it just didn’t. Not wanting to spoil too much, but for a book called The Goddess Test and based on the idea a girl being tested to achieve immortality and a seat with the Olympians, you expected there to maybe be a test or two, but there is nothing overt. There is very little action in the book – it felt like a rather long ‘scene setting’ piece from Harry Potter in the early years (you know when they eat lots of food, play some fun Quidditch and get Christmas presents).

Perhaps I just expected more from a myth based book with tests and tasks in the style of Perseus or Jason…as I recall Perseus’s task of bringing a suitable gift didn’t mean bobbing down to John Lewis for a nicely wrapped piece of porcelain, nor did Jason’s quest for The Golden Fleece lead him to the pub in the high street. I can understand the author’s rationale behind the ‘tests’ undertaken in the book – that would fit with the role Kate was hoping to perform in terms of judging people – however, I feel this would have been done much better if the secret tests were matched with some genuinely (or even mildly) epic tasks as well. As it is, I thought it was mainly fluff about fairly flat characters.

Overall Verdict: 3* Some romantics may like it; expect most people with any interest in classical mythology will find it lacking. Don’t expect adventure, tests or Goddess-like behaviour on the whole.