Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publish Date: April 19, 2011
Synopsis: 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.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The Goddess Test is a great example of young adult literature, in my opinion. Carter takes the already fascinating Greek myths and turns it into a story about self-worth, loyalty, and most importantly about love. Having read a lot of books in the young adult genre recently, I was looking for something uplifting, well-written, challenging yet enticing book to review. The Goddess Test seemed to be that one book. This book had been very favorably reviewed by many and loved by almost all that I know. To say that I could not wait for the books to be in my hands is simply downplaying my excitement.
Carter introduces the book in a prologue that allows the reader a small glimpse into a tragic death. This simple set the premise for me, which allowed me to automatically think that the title, The Goddess Test, will foreshadow a death, but of whom was my question.
Enter Kate, a loving and obedient daughter to a mother who is dying of cancer. She is moving her mother and herself to her mother’s hometown, to be closer to familiar surroundings in her last moments. Kate has lost familiarity of what she has known. Add to that she will soon lose the one thing that she has ever loved.
Now, within the first few pages, I was already crying. Cancer hits very close to home. Carter introduced Kate that had you sympathetic in 10 seconds flat. Kate is a strong character, loyal and compassionate, willing to give up everything for the one she loves. She is faced the challenges of a young girl on the cusp of womanhood, already having to deal with adult problems. How could you not love her already? Throughout the book, Kate is challenged again and again, struggling to grasp to who she is and accepting to whom she will become.
Henry. What could I say about Henry that you will not soon discover for yourself? To me, he was an unexpected character. I am sad to say, that within first meeting him, I feared him. I feared of the role he was going to play in regards to Kate. I had fallen in love with her so quickly, and I was protective of her. Well, I fell in love with Henry as well. He seems shy and closed off, but I soon learn the reasons why. He is loyal and loving, opposite of what I had original thought. He has the dark element in him, but towards Kate, you could tell the shimmer of love that is there. By the middle of the book, I wanted nothing but great things for him.
I must confess, I read this book three times. After I initially read it, I could not get enough of this present-day spin of a Greek tale. The original Greek myth tales are weaved throughout the story and all in the right places. And soon, I realized why. The plot lines were all brought together so beautifully that I simply could not get enough. The wide array of characters, from the leads to the supporting, all added to this marvelous story. I simply cannot say enough great things about this book.
You will not regret picking up this book. You will come for the story, but stay for the love and loyalty that these characters have towards each other. Now excuse me, I think I might just read it again.