As much as I enjoyed The Goddess Test (the first book in Aimee Carter's series), my experience reading Goddess Interrupted was very different from when I read the first book. While the stakes are high for all the members of the council in Goddess Interrupted, the story mostly centers around Kate's internal thoughts and feelings and her relationship with a number of characters. It's interesting that the book's biggest strength was also its greatest weakness in terms of storytelling.
Regardless of any other events taking place in the book, the story is really about the romantic relationship between Kate and Henry; which is great for fans of books heavily influenced by romance, but lacking for those who may hope for something more well-rounded.
Reasons to Read:
1.Masterfully emotional writing:
This is the one thing that really sold me on Goddess Interrupted; after being convinced that I wouldn't find anything interesting enough to redeem itself in GI, I was happy to discover that Aimee wasn't going to let me down and she threw in some heart-wrenching scenes that pulled at my heart strings. And boy, did she ever deliver! I'd go so far as to say that this book was emotionally manipulating me, and that wasn't always such a pleasant experience. But Kate asks so many questions of herself and even of Henry, intimate questions dealing with their relationship, which was nice to see in a YA book. It's definitely neat to see a YA book with a slightly older character (Kate's 19 in GI, I believe) and one who's married (in a semi-arranged marriage, at that!) because you get some really unique dynamics and questions being brought up that just don't get asked when you have a 16 year old heroine. And let's be honest, Kate and Henry honestly do have an extremely complicated relationship. My heart may just bleed a little bit for them- and I didn't even want it to! So there you go, major kudos to Aimee for accomplishing that.
2.A twist I did NOT see coming:
I probably pride myself a little bit too much on figuring out plot twists and whatnot (which is surprising, seeing as I seem to give this reason in a lot of my reviews for why people should read a book... maybe I'm not as clever as I think?) but yeah, I'll admit it: I was completely wrong about this one. I thought I had it alllll figured out and then WHAM- nope! Not even close! We get a FAST one pulled on us at the end, folks. There really isn't a hint that it's coming, but it still makes sense. And now I just kinda HAVE to read the third book. Because this is HUGE.
But- now, there's a big but to all of this: I didn't love Goddess Interrupted as much as I wanted to. I thought there was going to be tons of action and excitement going on, but the story largely revolves around Kate's feelings towards her marriage with Henry. Emphasis on "marriage" rather than relationship, because she isn't annoyingly obsessive about it the way some girls in YA books are, but it is a tad dull to read so many pages dedicated to Kate contemplating whether Henry will ever love her or not. And I sympathize. I do.
Which leads me to my next problem: Henry's pretty much a huge jerk. The conversations he and Kate have about their relationship? Um, I've had those. It's kinda freaky how they almost felt word for word. And my issue is that Henry can talk the talk... but he won't walk the walk. And for me, that's an issue in serious relationships. Maybe this is because I'm taking this a little bit too personally, because it hit a sore spot. And for me, I had to make a decision to walk away because it wasn't worth it. It was emotionally draining and really, borderline manipulative. I'm not okay with that, and I didn't feel that this was really discussed very well in GI. At times it seemed as if Kate was just being brushed off for being silly and paranoid; but she's NOT. Most of the time she's spot-on with her thinking, and I don't think she should have to brush off her feelings because Henry's vulnerable. I don't care if you've been hurt in the past, it does NOT give you any right or excuse to treat others poorly. Maybe I'm just extra bothered by this because they're supposed to be married, but the whole situation is actually pretty lame. Because they don't seem to comprehend what that might mean at all.
ALSO! Kate doesn't really DO anything. There's barely any fighting, and even then Kate's just told to stay at home... so she does. She sits in a chair and cries. And even if she does sneak off, there's no fighting. They just kind of all yell at each other. And then they leave, go home, and try to come up with a new plan. That's it. Huge disappointment for such a promising description.
I struggled with this one for a while because of the slow pace & large focus on romance (minus the romantic bits... go figure?) and it wasn't until the end when I finally felt excited and angry and frantic and annoyed. All. At. Once. But thankfully those last 50 pages or so really did bump up my enjoyment level for this one. And now you might see my two star rating and go "huh? But there were good things about it" and YES, that's true. There just wasn't enough of them. I'm definitely going to be picking up the next book, and I think a lot of people are going to like this one. There were just some pretty big issues in it for me, which detracted from a more positive rating.
E-galley received from publisher via Net Galley.show more
by Brenna Staats