Antigoddess by Kendare Blake

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Antigoddess by Kendare Blake

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Category: Teens
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: A fresh angle for the paranormal genre, with Blake transporting Ancient Greek gods and goddesses to the modern day, where they must fight a new war. Background knowledge probably required to get the most out of the book.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 384 Date: September 2013
Publisher: Orchard
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 140833075X

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Athena and her brother Hermes are a lot less godlike than they used to be. In fact, they are dying. Athena is being slowly suffocated by feathers growing inside her and Hermes's body is eating itself. Literally. They are on a road trip to find out exactly what it is killing the gods and to save themselves if they can. No matter the cost to themselves or others. Gods don't count costs.

Meanwhile, in the small town of Kincade, Cassandra's knack for foretelling the future is evolving into something more troubling than knowing the result of coin toss. She's beginning to suffer frightening, violent visions. Cassandra has no idea that she is the reincarnation of the Trojan priestess, gifted with prophecy but cursed never to be believed. But her boyfriend Aidan does. He is keeping a terrible secret - for he is Apollo, god of the sun, and the deity who cursed Cassandra all those years ago. He is trying to make amends.

But Cassandra has a vital part to play in this new war between the gods. Can Apollo protect her? And can he keep Athena and Hermes, his sister and brother, away?

Kendare Blake's new sequence takes readers on a fresh journey. Instead of ghosts and vampires and werewolves, we have fierce Greek gods and heroes. They're ruthless and will sacrifice anyone and anything for their own advantage. And they're beautiful, shining, charismatic creatures. You love them but you're also revolted by them. And Blake shows them in all their glory and antiglory (nod to the title there) in a strong narrative with plenty of tension, twists and turns, with absorbing and interesting characters.

But... Greek myths and legends are notoriously convoluted, with doublecrossing, triplecrossing, complicated family relationships and a lot more besides. This left Blake with a quandary - stifle the pace of the narrative with too much exposition of the mythos or risk leaving your readers a bit confused and playing catch up. She went with the latter, which I think was a good decision because her story depends on tension. And it was fine by me because I'm a bit of a myth and legend buff. I knew who everyone was and what to expect from their characters. And I think Blake did a good job with staying true to the essentials of all of them. But I do think it could leave some readers rather adrift, not the least because no real reason for the war is given. And the war is the entire point of the book. People who are unaware of the sheer nihilism and narcissim of the Greek pantheon may feel frustrated.

I did enjoy Antigoddess. I liked the characters. I liked the tension and the narrative flow. But if I'm completely honest, I was a tiny bit disappointed. It's a fun read, especially if you like all things classically Greek, but I thought Blake's earlier book, Anna Dressed in Blood was better.

If you like the idea of using the Classical Greek mythos in paranormal fiction, you might also enjoy Fury by Elizabeth Miles.

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Buy Antigoddess by Kendare Blake at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Antigoddess by Kendare Blake at


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