Antigoddess (Goddess War Series #1)by Kendare Blake
The Goddess War begins in Antigoddess, the first installment of the new series by acclaimed author of Anna Dressed in Blood, 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/p>/i>/p>/i>/i>
The Goddess War begins in Antigoddess, the first installment of the new series by acclaimed author of Anna Dressed in Blood, 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.
“Blake presents a gory, thrilling vision of the twilight of the gods, in all their pettiness and power, while letting readers draw their own messages and conclusions.” Publishers Weekly, starred review
“This new series from one of the best up-and-coming horror/suspense writers around updates Greek mythology but offers far more than a Percy Jackson retread. Blake's spunky and imaginative narrative illuminates the personalities of the gods, especially Athena, who's gone a bit punk and is endowed with wry humor.... This edgy first installment maneuvers forces into position; readers will want to stay tuned.” Kirkus Reviews
“The gods' world, while contemporary, is violent and laced with bizarre circumstances and powers, but Cassandra's is a normal adolescence in spite of her clairvoyance. It is Cassandra's visions that align their two worlds, creating the series debut's ultimate drama and tension, which promises to play out in subsequent Goddess War adventures.” Booklist
“This is Kendare Blake we're talking about, so people die, and there are terrible sacrifices. It's a great start and, of course, the cliffhanger ensures that I will be impatiently waiting for the sequel.” USA Today
Gr 9 Up—This exciting, supernatural thriller pairs ancient Greek mythology with contemporary American culture. A feather slowly tears its way through the roof of Athena's mouth. Despite the centuries of immortality she has shared with her family, the gods and goddesses of Olympus, a twilight has fallen upon them, stripping them of their power and their invulnerability. While there has always been animosity among them, the growing fear has amplified these tensions, and as the Goddess of Warfare, Athena knows what is to come. A world away, Cassandra has been experiencing premonitions throughout her entire life, but can sense that the visions are about to abruptly end when she turns 18. Athena sets off to find Cassandra, who she believes will be a weapon in the coming war, and soon realizes that she cannot escape the sins of her past and must rely on those she has hurt the most. One of the strongest features of the book is the use of alternating points of narration, with chapters switching between Athena's and Cassandra's perspective until they join together for a final confrontation with the forces that seek to harm them. This technique keeps readers focused on both of the heroines. Antigoddess is sure to be a high-interest title for fans of the supernatural.—Ryan F. Paulsen, New Rochelle High School, NY
Read an Excerpt
It was an odd little scene, a pocket of stillness in the middle of the cafeteria shuffle and noise: two boys at a corner table, watching a silver coin flip end over end. The girl across from them called it in the air, “Heads” or “Tails,” her voice indicating it was far less interesting than their bug eyes suggested. She’d called it correctly thirteen times in a row. She could’ve called it a hundred more.
“How are you doing this?”
“Magic,” Cassandra Weaver replied. The coin spun. “Tails.”
Aidan Baxter caught it and slapped it down against the back of his hand. He showed it, tails side up; the silver eagle shone under the glare of the fluorescent lights.
One of the boys held his hand out.
“Let me see it. Is it weighted?”
They studied it curiously, turning it in their fingers, scratching the edge, tapping it on the table. They flipped it themselves a couple of times. But it was just a quarter.
“There’s got to be something,” the taller boy muttered. He looked at Cassandra like it might be her. Something that she was doing.
But there was nothing special about her. No mystical tell, no ethereal eyes. Just normal, brown, blinking ones. He looked at her brown hair, hanging down around her shoulders. Too average. Not even a streak, no punk-rock pink or gypsy ribbons. He turned toward Aidan.
No one ever bought the magic. They always thought it was a trick, or an angle. Some boring explanation so their world could keep its dimensions and still be explained by the ABCs. By laws and math. That was the way they wanted it. If they learned the truth, they wouldn’t look at her with wonder. They’d be disappointed. Maybe even have her stoned to death.
“Seriously. What’s the trick?”
“Seriously?” She watched the coin spin and called it again. She could tell them she was counting the spins. That it wasn’t much different than scamming a game of poker. They’d believe that. “Seriously, I’m a genuine, bona fide psychic. Always have been.”
He smirked. “Right.”
She glanced at Aidan, and he smiled.
“It’s true,” he said as Cassandra called “Heads” almost before the quarter left his fingertips. “Pretty annoying, actually. I could never cheat on her and get away with it. And don’t get me started on the things she sees before they happen.”
Cassandra stifled a laugh. Mentioning her visions was farther than they usually went. But it wouldn’t matter. The skeptical muscles in the freshman’s face just clenched harder. They were muscles she knew well.
Aidan snatched the coin back. “So. Think you can beat her?”
For a second the boys’ mouths opened and closed like fish and Cassandra thought they might try. Sometimes they did. Once, a girl managed to call it right five times before she missed. Maggie Wegman. Just a petite blond girl who sang in the choir and played volleyball. Cassandra watched her sometimes in the halls, wondering if the five times had been a fluke, or if Maggie might be a little bit psychic too.
Might be nice if she was. We could start a club for freaks. I could be like Professor X.
She smiled to herself, and shook her head when Aidan gave her a weird look.
“Don’t waste your time.” Sam Burress winked at her from across the table, his brow arched beneath his black stocking cap. She hadn’t thought he’d been paying attention. “Nobody beats Cassandra. Half the school’s lost money to these two.” He gestured between her and Aidan with a carrot stick before biting through it. “Better just pay up. Get your friends to play and she’ll give you a cut.”
The boys opened their wallets and forked over ten dollars apiece.
“This isn’t hard-earned allowance money or anything, right?” Cassandra asked as she took it.
“Nah,” said one of the boys with a shrug. He had a sweet face and a mop of brown hair. “It’s a really cool trick.”
“Thanks. I stayed up for three days watching Criss Angel to figure out how to do it.”
His face lit up, relieved by the explanation. “I knew I saw this somewhere.” He picked up his plastic lunch tray and nudged his friend to leave, back to their own table. Before he left, he winked at her. No hard feelings, and now when they passed each other in the hall, they’d nod.
“Why’d you say that?” Aidan asked after they’d gone.
Cassandra shrugged. To make them feel better maybe. Or maybe just to get the wink. Some goodwill instead of wary glances later on.
Aidan shook his head.
“Your showmanship is slipping. Do I need to get you a crystal ball and a bunch of gold jewelry?” He slid closer to her on the bench, blue eyes dark and devilish, then picked up her hand and kissed it. “They’re going to start thinking it’s me. That I’ve got a trick to tossing it. Maybe you should breathe heavy, or roll your eyes back in your head.”
Cassandra snorted. “What am I? Some guy at a carnival?” She shoved him with her shoulder. “You really love this about me, don’t you?”
“I really do.” He kissed her temple, like that was where it came from. “Amongst other things.” He turned away to take a bite of bland lunchroom burrito and to scoop the cherries out of his fruit cup into Cassandra’s. The hood of his gray sweatshirt was over his head, covering his golden hair just like it always was at school unless a teacher made him take it down for class. He looked like a street urchin, sitting there with his knee tucked up, scarfing his food.
But a good-looking street urchin.
Cassandra reached to touch his cheek.
“No PDAs while I’m eating.” Andie Legendre swung her leg over the bench opposite, disrupting Sam and the rest of the table. They clucked and rustled like birds disturbed on the roost as they moved down. “You’ll appreciate that rule when I have a disgusting boyfriend of my own.”
“Yeah, we will,” Aidan said, too enthusiastically for Andie’s taste if her expression was anything to go by. “Besides, when are you ever going to get a boyfriend?”
“Whenever I find one who’s more manly than I am.” She threw a carrot at him.
“So never, then.”
Cassandra punched Aidan lightly in the shoulder, but he and Andie both laughed. It wasn’t exactly untrue. Andie had been named cocaptain of the varsity girls’ hockey team that fall, even though she was still a sophomore. And she was taller than most boys. And stronger.
“Trade you?” Andie scooped Cassandra’s burrito off her tray and deftly swapped it for a tri-cut potato. Half the burrito disappeared in one bite.
“Tuck your hair back.” Cassandra reached forward and slid Andie’s black hair behind her ears. “You’re going to eat it otherwise.”
Andie snorted. “So what? It’s clean. You guys been scamming freshmen again?”
“How’d you know? Are you psychic now too?”
“Yeah. I used my magical ability to see you from the lunch line.”
Cassandra’s eyes drifted through the cafeteria. It was always so loud. Pervasively loud. A constant, multitone buzzing interspersed with the clack and clang of trays and silverware and chair legs dragged against the floor. At least fifty conversations going on at once, and everyone had at least one ear or one eye on someone sitting at a different table.
Cassandra crunched through her tri-cut potato and tuned out the noise. There were worse things to be than psychic. A mind reader, for example.
“Hide me.” Andie ducked low.
Cassandra turned. An auburn-haired girl with a sprinkling of freckles across her nose and cheekbones was headed their way with an imperious look on her face.
“If she tells me one more time how captains need to set an example I’m going to fling rice in her hair.”
“Andie!” Christy called. “What are you wearing tomorrow?”
“My jersey,” Andie replied with a curled lip as Christy breezed past.
“Good. Because captains set an example.”
Andie’s spork hovered dangerously above the rice, but in the end she just threw the spork. It bounced off Christy’s shoulder harmlessly. She didn’t even acknowledge it. Captains set an example.
“You guys coming to the game tomorrow?” Andie asked.
Cassandra cocked her head regretfully. “History test Friday. I have to study.”
“I have to help her.”
“You guys are lame.” The roll of Andie’s eyes confirmed the point. Andie never studied. And not because she was a natural scholar, but because she couldn’t be bothered to give a shit.
Cassandra nudged Aidan. “Friday night’s open,” she said. “Bonfire party at Abbott Park?”
“That’s better.” Andie grinned. “I’ll spread the word.”
* * *
Studying might’ve been a mistake. Two hours in, it was clear that Cassandra already knew everything, and Aidan was bored. He reclined on pillows stacked against her headboard and slid farther down them by the minute. He was never really any more interested in studying than Andie was.
“You wish we were at the game?” he asked.
“A little.” Or a lot. Watching Andie’s game with a hot chocolate and a long piece of red rope licorice sounded ten times better than what they were doing. Notebooks and textbooks and loose-leaf handouts lay strewn around them in carefully organized circles and piles, the pages exposed so the words could whisper “U.S. History” into the air like a cloud. She glanced at the clock; it was too late to turn back.
“Are they going to win?” Aidan asked.
“Yes,” Cassandra replied sulkily.
Aidan took a drink of his soda and set it on the nightstand. Then he started discarding books and papers, casually dropping her carefully ordered stacks onto the floor. Each moved pile opened up space between them on the bed. He shrugged out of his zip-up hoodie and crawled toward her.
“What are you doing?”
“Don’t worry. You’ll like it.”
“Are you sure?”
He paused. “Fifty, sixty percent sure.”
Laughing, she let him take the last notebook out of her hand and heard it hit the carpet as he laid her on her back. The room was quiet as they kissed, the bedspread and walls grown used to their antics. They’d been making out in her bedroom for almost a year. Sometimes, when he wasn’t there, the air seemed full of him still, imprinted with a thousand memories of things they’d done. Everything inside the walls was tied to him somehow, right down to the walls themselves. He’d helped her paint them white six months ago, when she’d finally had enough of the lavender of her girlhood. But they’d been lazy, and distracted, and they’d left roller marks. In a certain light, the lavender still showed through at the corners.
“My parents will be home any minute,” she said.
“Yeah. So disentangle your hands from my bra.”
Aidan smiled and rolled onto his back with a groan. “Ow.” He pulled a textbook out from under his shoulder and tossed it onto the floor. “We study too much.”
“You know why I study so much.”
He looked at her and held out his arm; she rolled closer and rested her head on his shoulder.
“The future, the future, I know. You don’t know where we’re headed. A little weird for a psychic.”
“Shut up.” She nudged him in the ribs.
“I’m kidding. But I’m telling you. It’ll fill in. It’s the only thing it can do.”
Cassandra said nothing. They’d talked about it before. The dark spot waiting up ahead, somewhere around her eighteenth year. The day when she’d no longer be able to foresee things. It was a strange thing to foretell, her own lack of foretelling. But she knew it, just as surely as she knew on which side a coin would fall. She wouldn’t be psychic forever. One day it would be gone, like a light going out.
It’ll fill in, he always said. And she supposed he was right. But since they wouldn’t be able to scam freshmen for cash forever, they’d better have a backup plan. Like college.
Cassandra listened to Aidan’s heartbeat, the hot rushing of blood so strong beneath her cheek. When she’d first told him she knew her gift would disappear, she’d asked if it would make her less. If it would make her boring, or ordinary. He said no, but sometimes when she made a prediction the look in his eyes was so intense. Almost proud.
“Do you think I’ll feel stupid?” Cassandra asked.
“After I can’t see anymore. Will it be like a blank? Like words on the tip of my tongue that I can’t quite remember?”
“No.” He kissed the top of her head. “I don’t think it’ll be like that.”
“What do you think it’ll be like?”
“I think it’ll be like … life,” he said after a few seconds. “Like other people lead. I think you’ll go to college, and I’ll go to college, and we’ll get a place together. That’s what you want, isn’t it?”
It was. Despite a few misgivings, most of her couldn’t wait. It might be nice to not know for a change. More of an adventure. Aidan said that some people would kill to have her ability, but she didn’t know why. It never came in any particular use.
“Yes, that’s what I want. That’s why I study.”
“Not a good enough excuse. I’m the richest orphan in the tri-state area. We don’t need scholarships.”
“You don’t need scholarships,” she corrected. “Not all of us get to live out a reversal of the musical Annie.” She remembered how curious she’d been three years ago, when she’d heard that Ernie and Gloria Baxter, neighbors for as long as she could remember, had adopted a teenage son. A trust-fund-rich teenage son.
Aidan grinned. “I guess it was a pretty hard-knock life. Living in all those group homes.”
Cassandra lay quiet. He joked, but it was probably more true than not. Part of her still didn’t understand why he’d chosen to live in state-run facilities and group homes instead of with whatever remained of his family. A family as wealthy as his had to have surviving members. A drunk uncle, at least. But she knew better than to ask. He shut down whenever she brought it up. “You worry too much.” He sounded drowsy. She’d have to rouse him soon, or they’d wake to a vision of her dad’s extremely annoyed face. “You and I will be together, Cassandra. You don’t have to be psychic to see that.”
Copyright © 2013 by Kendare Blake
Meet the Author
KENDARE BLAKE holds an MA in Creative Writing from Middlesex University in northern London. Blake is the author of Anna Dressed in Blood, Girl of Nightmares, and Antigoddess. She lives and writes in Lynnwood, Washington.
Kendare Blake holds an MA in creative writing from Middlesex University in northern London. She is the critically acclaimed author of Anna Dressed in Blood, Girl of Nightmares, and Antigoddess. She lives and writes in Lynnwood, Washington.
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I have always been a sucker for Greek mythology so I was thrilled when I got my hands on Kendare Blake’s Antigoddess. Before I go into what this book is, let’s take a moment to mention what this book is not. It is NOT something that would fit comfortably with the Percy Jackson series. Percy and his Half-Blood friends are great but it’s basically Harry Potter with gods instead of magic. Antigoddess is dark. Sure, it has its moments of levity and humor, but serious business takes place within these pages, and some scenes could be a little graphic so it’s probably not something for younger readers. For the first time ever, the immortal gods of Olympus face death. Over the centuries, they’ve declined in power and Mount Olympus itself has fallen, but the gods still endured… until now. Athena, goddess of war and wisdom, along with Hermes, messenger of the gods, are on a quest to find out what’s happening to them, and hopefully discover a cure along the way. While it’s never precisely spelled out, it’s apparent that what the gods are known for become the symptoms of their disease. Athena has always been associated with owls, and now owl feathers are growing within her body. While she rips them out when she can get her fingers on them, most are not easy to to reach, and she fears the moment where she might lie helpless upon the ground, suffocating from lungs filled with feathers. Meanwhile, Hermes, known for being able to run super fast, has a metabolism that has shot into overdrive, slowly burning his body up from the inside out. The two immortals discover that their only hope lies with a teenage girl named Cassandra, who happens to be the reincarnation of Cassandra of Troy. While the girl has the power to see the future, Athena is told that Cassandra can be much more than a seer, so the two gods set off to find her before the enemy does. Throughout the novel, the point-of-view shifts between a couple of main characters, giving the reader a great look at what’s going on from multiple perspectives, and Kendare does an excellent job of bringing all the characters to life, making it possible to even sympathize with a goddess that’s been around for thousands of centuries. The plot has plenty of twists and turns, making for an exciting read. While my love for mythology might’ve given me an advantage in knowing who the main villain was, I was still surprised at how evil this person was portrayed, although evil might not be the correct word. The gods that stand against Athena, Hermes, and Cassandra aren’t bad-guy caricatures that want to take over the world. They simply want to live, and an immortal suddenly facing mortality will take extreme measures to save themselves. Whether you like mythology or not, lovers of fantasy adventure will enjoy Antigoddess.
This book was so fun to read. I cant wait to read the next book. It showed how gods would survive if they had less power and lived in the normal world. It had a little romance, action, and mystery. It was a cool way to see anothet aspect of this myth.
Such a fabulous book. Right from the start you get into the nitty gritty of the on going battle between the gods. I didn't feel confused or out of place, it was the perfect amount of information given and the amount that was withheld. I know that probably seems confusing, but I hate when I'm reading a book and the characters know everything and are being ominous, but in this case, no one knew what was really happening so no one knew more than the reader which was great. I really adored getting to meet the characters, Hermes was a prick in the way that he was like a spoiled little brat. And I loved how Athena was a badass who seemed a little lost. I couldn't imagine how terrifying it would be knowing that you were immortal and then suddenly, you were dying and you coudn't find out why. Cassandra and Aidan were my favorites in the whole book. The way that he accepted her and loved her despite having these strange visions. Its always great when you get a relationship thats to wonderfully set up that you don't have the issue of Instalove or even in this case a love triangle. I do wish that we could have gotten to know both Aidan and Cassandra outside of their relationship, but I don't think it is necessary because of how important they are to each other. I loved the blood and the gore of this book and how Blake did not shy away from the ugly side of the gods. More importantly, I loved how she incorporated all of the different myths and backgrounds of all the Gods into their lives and into how it was leading to their downfall. I know that my sister is going to love using this book in her classroom because it teaches so much more about the Gods and who they were. I cannot wait to see what is going to happen in the next installment of the Goddess war, I just know that its going to be golden.
I am only ten years old and I know all about Greek mythology so I revised anybody to read this book it's awsome
I am really looking forwarrd to the next book.
Title: Antigoddess Author: Kendare Blake Genre: Urban Fantasy Review: I am going to be upfront and honest about this: my review is probably bias for a number of reasons. 1) I picked up this book because my sister borrowed it and I thought it had a cool cover 2) One of the main characters (there are two) has the same name as me--Athena (my full name is Athena but I usually go by Tina online) 3) I had high expectations for this book based on the previous two factors. Unfortunately, I think I might have set my expectations too high because Antigoddess fell a tad short of them. So basically the Greek gods and goddesses are dying; Hermes flesh is being eaten away, Hera is turning to stone, Athena is being choked by owl feathers, etc. War is brewing among the gods and goddesses and it seems as if Athena and Hermes are on the losing side against Hera and Poseidon. One important player in this war game can change everything though: Cassandra, a prophetess from Troy. Only one little problem--she died like 2000 years ago...right? It seems as if Greek heroes and legendary figures (such as Achilles, Odysseus and Cassandra just to name a few) have the ability to reincarnate. And it's a race among the gods and goddesses to see who can find Cassandra first. (On a side note, today we were talking about Cassandra of Troy in my Latin class and I got wicked excited, lol) The novel is told from Cassandra and Athena's point of view. Both characters were solidly built and had distinct personalities. Cassandra, unaware that she has be reincarnated into the modern world, lives a relatively normal life with her boyfriend Aiden. The visions that she gets once in a while do get on her nerves though--luckily, Aiden seems to be very understanding and takes everything in stride. Athena, once a proud goddess, is slowly dying. Her powers are a fraction of what they used to be. Often viewed as harsh and callous by others, she's just trying to survive (then again, I might be a bit bias here...) I love how both Cassandra and Athena do not need to be saved by some knight in shining armor every five seconds, as Athena makes it obvious here: "Don't baby me," she said. Odysseus raised hi eyebrows. "Wouldn't dream of it." As much as I liked the characters, (Cassandra, Aiden and Athena being my favorites), I couldn't really connect to them. I personally felt that the novel would've been better off told from first person POV. I mean, one of the mentioned three characters above dies and I didn't feel anything. Honestly. One of my favorite characters died yet I didn't feel sad or angry or depressed.... There is quite a bit of background building up, setting the scene and everything. Athena and Cassandra don't actually meet until halfway though the book. But there wasn't really any slow or drag in the plot. There was definitely some swearing and crude humor in the novel, but that didn't bother me at all. Final thoughts about Antigoddess: It's like a Percy Jackson book aimed towards an older audience--I think readers 14+ would enjoy this book.
I was so excited to start reading Antigoddess by author Kendare Blake when I first saw it on Goodreads. It sounded unique and awesome. Greek Gods that are dying and a human main character who can somehow change that? That sounds awesome! While I haven’t gotten the chance to read Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood novels I had heard nothing but great things about her writing and was eager to see what all the fuss was about. After a mysterious illness attacks the remaining Gods, Athena and Hermes both find each other suffering from ailments that will result in their deaths. Hermes’ body is slowly killing itself while Athena’s body is filling up with feathers. Desperate for a way to continue living forever, Athena and Hermes both discover that there is one girl who may be the key to saving the Gods from the Twilight. However Athena and Hermes aren’t the only two Gods who are looking for a way to save themselves. Meanwhile Cassandra has lived her entire life able to see and predict the future but she knows that her ability won’t last forever. With her boyfriend Aiden and her best friend and brother, everything looks fine for Cassandra. Until she discovers that Aiden isn’t who she thought he was and that she lived an entirely different life before this one. Eventually Cassandra learns that she’s the key to helping the Gods and that there are others like her who lived past lives in ancient Greece. Right off the hop I fell in love with author Kendare Blake’s writing style. Personally I enjoyed how her descriptions of certain things would come off as very dark and give me goose bumps. When she first described Athena pulling out a feather from the roof of her mouth I got shivers and winced at how perfectly I imagined it. All of her darker more gritty descriptions had me falling in love with Antigoddess. I could easily see the story playing out in front of me and when things got disturbing or gory I saw everything clear as day. Completely awesome-sauce. The characters in Antigoddess are ones that I don’t think I’ll be forgetting anytime soon. Every character is very memorable there are little things that each one of them did that left a mark on me. From Athena and her feathers and her badassery to Cassandra and her discovery of her past life in Troy, I loved this cast of characters and will remember them. What I didn’t expect was for myself to be yelling at the characters after I started to get so attached to them. Athena would choose to turn her romantic feels away and I would start shouting at her all angry, characters would die and I would start screaming in protest. These are characters that readers will get attached to and be able to relate to. Antigoddess is the first novel in a series and I’m looking forward to getting to read the next novel. After Antigoddess’s explosive and seriously unexpected ending I am absolutely dying for the next novel in this series. I need to know what happens next and I need to know now. Readers who want a read that will have them on the edge of their seat and begging for the next novel (like I am) are definitely going to want to check out this addictive read. I would recommend Antigoddess to fans of Greek mythology who want a novel with a twist, readers who are looking for something that is dark and thrilling at the same time and to readers who are looking for an addictive supernatural read.
I loved this book soo much. Im kinda a sucker for greek mythology. By the way if you like greek mythology you might like the book "The Shadow Thieves"
'Antigoddess' is the outstanding first book in a new young adult fantasy series that brings Greek gods and goddesses into the 21st century. Gods are supposed to be immortal - so why are they dying? Athena is being slowing choked by the feathers of her owls and Hermes is withering away before her eyes. They don't understand what's happening to them or how to stop it, so they go on a journey to discover the truth. Along the way, they meet up with other gods and goddesses facing the same excruciating deaths. It appears that Hera, queen of the gods, has gone insane and has made an alliance with Poseidon and Aphrodite in an effort to kill the other gods in order to save themselves. A full on war between the Olympian gods is about to begin in the midst of unsuspecting mortals. The only hope that Athena and her friends have is the reincarnation of a powerful prophetess, Cassandra, who is much more than she seems. With Cassandra's help, will Athena and her friends be able to stop the war from happening or will they all end up dead? This is the first book I've read by the author and it far surpassed any and all expectations I may have had for it. From the very first paragraph, it sucked me into its pages and didn't let up until the end. I loved that the ancient Greek gods and goddesses were updated and brought into the 21st century. It made them more fascinating and yet easy to identify with as characters. I enjoyed learning about their lives, both past and present, and the history of all the Olympians. The entire cast of characters was incredibly well written with distinct personalities, strengths, weaknesses, and hopes and fears. Each and every one of the characters in the book made an impression on me and I felt like I almost knew them myself. The plot was compelling and had me eagerly turning the pages to see what was going to happen. There's several story lines in the book that go on alongside the main plot, but these only served to enhance the story and gave it more depth. The idea of ancient Greek gods and goddesses waging war in the modern world was compelling and the author wrote about it with such finesse that it seemed like I was right alongside the characters throughout the story. The writing itself was phenomenal with a fast pace, vivid imagery, and detailed descriptions that had me enchanted from the start. There's so much going on and so many different directions that the series can take - I can't wait to see where the next book will take us. Highly recommended for fans of YA fantasy and mythology retellings as well as anyone looking for a great book that stands apart from the rest of the genre. Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
This starts off with a very interesting premise, the ancient Greek God’s are dying, but being God’s, they rage against the dying of the light (Dylan Thomas). Seeking to settle old grudges or prolong their own lives by consuming their children like the original Titans did. What is this book really about? Growing up, love, redemption and finding out that you and the world aren’t exactly the way you always thought it was. When you reach the point that your parents, no matter how loving and supportive they are, can’t make the decisions for you anymore and your choices count. It is wonderful to see healthy, loving families in fiction, too often the families portrayed are dysfunctional and the children, rightly so, are rebellious. If you take a look at the myths of the ancient Greeks, you can see that the God’s have that dysfunctional family dynamic. After all, Hera and Zeus’s only 2 legitimate children were Hephaestus (who Hera threw down from Olympus when he was born with a physical handicap) and Mars (the god of war). Not very nice people, even for God’s. We also have reincarnation, with Cassandra (the cursed prophetess, loved and cursed by Apollo) being reborn along with Hector (who is her brother again) Andromache (an Amazon) Odysseus and Achilles (who we don’t meet, yet). Cassandra’s boyfriend turns out to be Apollo, who never stopped loving her through all the centuries and is trying to win back her love, make amends for cursing her and keeping her safe and away from the God’s battling for survival. Circe’s witches are back, too. This is such a big idea, that to do it justice, it needs to be handled in multiple books. I am eagerly awaiting the next book and the next step along Cassandra’s journey.