Goddess by Josephine Angelini Review

Goddess by Josephine Angelini



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GoodReads Summary:

After accidentally unleashing the gods from their captivity on Olympus, online Helen must find a way to re-imprison them without starting a devastating war. But the gods are angry, and their thirst for blood already has a body count.

To make matters worse, the Oracle reveals that a diabolical Tyrant is lurking among them, which drives a wedge between the once-solid group of friends. As the gods use the Scions against one another, Lucas’s life hangs in the balance. Still unsure whether she loves him or Orion, Helen is forced to make a terrifying decision, for war is coming to her shores.

In Josephine Angelini’s compelling conclusion to the masterfully woven Starcrossed trilogy, a goddess must rise above it all to change a destiny that’s been written in the stars. With worlds built just as fast as they crumble, love and war collide in an all-out battle that will leave no question unanswered and no heart untouched.

My Review:

This review will NOT contain spoilers for this particular novel, but it will contain spoilers for the two previous novels. You can read my review of Starcrossed here and my review of Dreamless here

Having never read The Iliad, I’m not really familiar with the story, so I had NO idea what direction this was going in at all. I know Greek mythology and stories fairly well so I had an idea but this is a retelling so obviously Josie Angelini was going to have some twists going on here.

And she definitely did. I was able to meet Josephine at the Los Angeles Teen Book Fest this past Saturday and being able to talk with her, and to hear her insight on how she wrote the books, and what her methods were like, and even just getting some advice from her really made me want to run home to finish this book.

Which is pretty much exactly what I did.

The thing that I really love about this story, and the continuation of the entire trilogy is that it is based on something we’ve read before but it is twisted, and that is what makes it so compelling. We know the story of Helen of Troy, at least a little bit. I feel like most everyone has a slight knowledge of the story. But no matter what, you still don’t see the end of Goddess coming, and that’s what makes it so compelling. You know the tragic ending of the original story and you’re afraid of what the end of this one might be, but that’s what keeps you turning the pages. Everything that has been going on in all the books is leading down to this moment where the fight between the Scions and the gods is going to happen.

I’ll also say that she really knows how to write a battle scene. Its confusing to read her battle scene but that’s what I like about a good battle scene> I want to feel lost and confused and like I’m spinning in circles and I can’t quite find the right direction because that’s what I’d imagine being in the middle of a battle would feel like. Because we often get multiple points of view in this story, you really see the chaos of it all, and I think that’s brilliant. I wish I could write in third person, and maybe one day I’ll have to give it a try to see if I can do that. I write all first person, but the winding of the multiple third person point of views, especially during that battle scene, is incredible.

Plus, and I won’t say more than this, because, you know, spoilers: kraken. Enough said.

I also think that Angelini knows how to make sacrifices as well. I hate happy endings. I do. I mean, obviously I don’t want a book to end in complete and totally despair but I also don’t really want it to be sunshines and rainbows and happiness. Not in books that are paranormal or fantasy or sci-fi because there are wars and battles and fights involved and you’re crazy if you think people don’t get hurt. I hate books where people don’t get hurt because its unrealistic. Goddess has its share of deaths and sacrifices and they HURT, but a good book can make you hurt, and so I was impressed by her ability to make me care for these people and then care when they died.

All in all, a great ending to a fine trilogy. And I’m not going to lie, I really actually want to read The Iliad now ;)


4 out of 5 stars

5 thoughts on “Goddess by Josephine Angelini Review

  1. Chloe says:

    I was up until 2.30 am reading this last night. So many opinions! But I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll try to control myself. First up, I really enjoyed it. No one stays up that late if you don’t like a book, right? I read The Odyssey and The Iliad years ago, and we’ve been studying Euripides’ The Women of Troy in several of my classes so I am rather passionate about the female characters, so sometimes Angelini’s characterisations grated against me. In Dreamless I had some problems with the plot and characterisations – we never get to see any emotional growth or what impact the events are having on her. SPOILER FOR DREAMLESS: like we never really find out what impact Lucas pretending to hate Helen has on her. When she realises what he was doing she was mad for like 10 seconds. And they never really explain what impact the whole ‘unable to dream’ has on her. We know she’s dying, but how and why? END SPOILER. This book was so action heavy that I didn’t notice those things as much, and I felt that the characterisations were stronger. The whole things about Guinevere and Lancelot was cute, who doesn’t like a bit of Arthurian legend? I’d never really thought how similar the two stories are in essentials before. I did feel the end was a bit of a cop out, but it made sense for the story to end that way as opposed to a big triumph and the world turning into paradise or something. There’s a lot of scope for more books in this world and I’d be keen to read them if Angelini does :) Man I could write a whole research paper on this book.

    • Sara says:

      That’s what I love about YA, is that you can take it and integrate it into other works, especially when they’re based on something else. I think that’s why YA is such a viable genre to read in. There’s so much going on there and SO much to discuss.

      When I met her on Saturday, she told everyone that she’s working on a sort of sci-fi/fantasy cross based on Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, which sounds so INSANELY exciting, because that was one of the few things in high school that I actually enjoyed.

  2. Chloe says:

    I love works that are inspired by classics – the thought that this book can make some young thing who hasn’t been exposed any classic lit want to read to The Iliad or the Odyssey or any of the Greek plays makes me so happy. I just brought a lot of baggage with me regarding the characters, especially as they are so overtly reincarnations (literally and figuratively, as opposed to “inspired by” or “based upon.”
    Wow, a book inspired by a play that uses historification to condemn the McCarthyist communist witch hunts of the – that will be some heavy matter!

    • Sara says:

      Yeah, I’m really excited about it. Apparently it’s going to be switched though, it’ll be a community of witches that start burning those who AREN’T magical. She was very vague on it, probably because she’s still working on it but it sounds awesome.

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