Monday, December 5, 2011

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

About The Book: "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." -Goodreads

First Line: "How did it happen this time?"

One Great Line: “Do you think he's cute?" I rolled my eyes. "He's a god, Mom. Of course he's cute.” --Kate  

What Others Are Saying: "...The bargain she strikes with Henry is a grim one, but the full enormity of what she has undertaken — 'live forever or die trying' — is not revealed until it's too late to recant. Carter wears her influences openly, with many passages reading like outtakes from Robin McKinley's Beauty by way of Neil Gaiman's Sandman. Nevertheless, the narrative is well executed, and Kate is a heroine better equipped than most to confront and cope with the inexplicable. Ages 13 — 18. (May)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

"Carter's liberal take on the myth of Hades and Persephone is unique. Many girls will be drawn to Kate's budding romance with the brooding Henry in this evenly paced paranormal romance. "—Adrienne L. Strock, Maricopa County Library District, AZ

What I Thought: Ok, I know this is classified as YA, but you know as well as I do that there are 13 and 14 year-olds that would love this. The Greek mythology aspect alone is such fun. I realize I'm late getting to this one, especially since the next one in the series is due out in March. I also have to take issue with some critics who are up in arms about how she's bent the original myth. Seriously, not only is it a myth it's fiction. How can you not love the more handsome gentle Hades we find in  Henry? I couldn't put this down, the tension is high and the rewards are great. I can't wait for the next one. 

About The Author: Aimee Carter 

Who:Aimée Carter was born and raised in Michigan, where she currently resides. She started writing fan fiction at eleven, began her first original story four years later, and hasn’t stopped writing since. Her first novel for young adults, THE GODDESS TEST will be published by Harlequin Teen on April 26th, 2011. The sequel, GODDESS INTERRUPTED, will follow in January 2012. (Okay, no hate here but as a late bloomer...I'm just saying.)

What: Here is a fun podcast by Author's Are Rockstars. Check it out to find out great details from the author herself!! Click this link for a mp3!

When: "I started writing original stories when I was a teenager, creating characters who were my age, and although I grew older, my characters never did. I do tend to write with older teens in mind – Kate is eighteen at the start of the first book – but mostly I write what I’d like to read. And I’ve yet to come up with an idea that would be better suited for the adult market than the YA crowd. Honestly, I think YA literature is some of the most entertaining stuff out there today. Teenagers tend to insist on quality, logic, and compelling characters, and they won’t sit through a hundred pages of nothing to get to the good stuff. There’s a reason so many adults gravitate toward YA lit as well, and I think that has everything to do with how friggin’ amazing YA fiction is." Interview on Book Vacations.

How: "The writing process tends to vary for me. My habits evolve, and while I can write anywhere, I prefer to write in a bookstore or cafe. I write every day, usually a few thousand words, but sometimes only a sentence or two. I always listen to a song on repeat in order to drown out the sound around me, though usually the song I listen to doesn’t have much significance to whatever I’m writing. The mood has to match though. I can’t listen to an upbeat song during an emotionally difficult scene. I always write on a computer (though I outline on paper), and I usually have to disconnect myself from the internet. With smartphones, however, that tends to be a bit tricky." -Interview on Book Vacations

Challenges: "The most challenging would probably be the last stages of editing – copyediting, proofreading, that sort. Mostly because I’m a perfectionist, and while some people zoom through their drafts, I read every last word to myself, sometimes over and over again to make sure it all makes sense. It’s extremely tedious and time-consuming." 
-Interview on I Want To Read That

**Don't forget to check out all the other Marvelous Middle Grade Monday Bloggers in my sidebar!!

Enter here for a chance to win The Goddess Test over at Geek Girls Book Blog.



  1. Oh! So this is like one of those books on the fence between MG and YA. I do have one silly question though, is there kissing in it? ;)
    (just wondering)
    I'm adding it to my tbr pile to find out more for myself :)

  2. I have this one on my Kindle but haven't read it yet. I have to admit, you've made me want to bump it up the list. :-)

  3. Sounds like a great book. I'm glad you spotlighted it. I really enjoy upper middle grade stories that border on YA.

  4. Well, in the traditional publishing world, MG is 4th, 5th, and 6th grade, or approximately ages 8 to 12. YA is age 12 and up. And Chapter Books are 2nd and 3rd Grade, or approximately ages 7 and 8.

    But I'm definitely seeing a trend toward MG as 10 to 14 (think Percy Jackson), which would include books like this for sure. And the trend in YA is toward more mature stuff, for ages 14 and up. Not sure how it will end up!

    Nice review, Pam!

  5. Interesting what Joanne says above. There is definitely a shift, with a new "tween" niche.

    This sounds like a great revisioning of the myth. Thanks for bringing it to my attention, Pam.

  6. I have to say that it is very murky where books fit sometimes. I know several 13-year-olds that this might be too mature for, but I also know some 15-year-olds that may find this too much like a Cinderella tale. It really speaks to a writer, writing their book and then worry about where it fits.

  7. This does sound good. And I think YA can go for MG just as much as YA.. most of the time anyway. The whole mythology theme is very popular these days, thanks to Rick Riordan. :)

  8. Hmmm. Middle graders do love mythology, but this does sound more YA. I'll have to take a look.


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