The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter. I've been wanting to sit down and escape into a great epic love story for awhile now, and I finally found what I was looking for in The Goddess Test! This book had a great premise (mythology! Hades! love story!) and I loved what Carter did with it. I loved the way the story was built, with a murder mystery theme underlying the drama—who is killing off all the girls? will Kate be next??—and some great unexpected twists at the end. Not to mention the love story. Swooooooon.
This story reminded me of Beauty and the Beast, one of my all time favorite stories. A contract ties the initially unwilling Kate to the estate with the dark, brooding dude, and her love is the last chance to save him.
Carter was great about making Kate’s slowly changing feelings toward Henry (Hades) really believable, as well as demonstrating her free will in the situation so that it doesn’t get into weird Stockholm’s Syndrome territory. Kate does always want to save other people, but I think her compassion for others is what makes her unusual and unique, as well as logical for the role as a potential candidate for Queen of the Underworld. The reader sees why Kate is different from other girls, stemming from her long-term care of her ailing mother. Being a constant companion to someone you love who is suffering changes a person. The fact that Kate remains compassionate instead of becoming hardened made her very attractive to me. Not to mention, I’m a fan of non-whiny non-self-involved protagonists who are willing to make heroic sacrifices for others! I downed the book in one sitting and at the end wanted more.
Release date is April 26th! My thanks to Harlequin Teen for this ARC for review via NetGalley!