Goddess by Josephine Angelini Review

Goddess by Josephine Angelini



You Can Find the Book At:



Barnes and Noble

Author Website

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

Los Angeles Teen Book Fest Recap!

On Saturday, no rx I had an absolutely fantastic day at the Los Angeles Public Library, page for their Teen Book Fest.


About a dozen young adult authors, and a handful of book bloggers, descended upon the library for a day full of discussion, book giveaways, and signings. It was pretty much heaven for me.

I went to the Ontario Teen Book Fest, my first teen book fest, back in May and honestly had an amazing time, discovering new authors and discussing books and writing with all of them. I was eager to attend this one in the hopes that I would have just as much fun as I did last time.

And I definitely did.

There were a TON of amazing authors in attendance, and I was super excited when I found out there was a blogging panel. I’ve been doing this for about a year and a half now, but I’m still new to the whole experience, when there are others who’ve been blogging for years.

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Gretchen McNeil, Francesca Lia Block, Josephine Angelini and Cornelia Funke

I attended three panels. The first panel was Classically Inspired, and it was with authors that I’ve all read and enjoyed: Gretchen McNeil, Francesca Lia Block, Josephine Angelini and Cornelia Funke. All of these authors have used old tales, or classic novels or stories, either as inspiration to their stories or have retold those stories. Francesca’s newer release, Love in the Time of Global Warming, parallels Homer’s the Odyssey, while Josephine’s Starcrossed trilogy is a retelling of his tale, The Iliad. Cornelia talks about the various folk tales and mythologies that she uses in her own stories.

They spent a lot of time discussing the way they go about their research, and the way they connect their stories and the stories told before. I got so much writing advice from it, and I’m in such a slump right now, so I was eagerly listening for all advice. Cornelia is a very seasoned author, and she says that she now handwrites all of her books. I used to do that, once upon a time, before my boyfriend bought me my first laptop a few years ago. I really took that advice to heart, because I’ve been struggling SO much, and I hand wrote last night, and I wrote about 1000 words, so good advice, Cornelia.

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The moderator, and bloggers Thuy, Maggie, Lee, Alyson and Alethea!

The next panel that I attended was all about blogging, and it featured Alethea Allarey from Read Now, Sleep Later, Alyson Beecher from Kid Lit Frenzy, Lee Wind from I’m Here, I’m Queer, What the Hell Do I Read?, Thuy Lam from Nite Lite Book Reviews, and Maggie Park from Young Adult Anonymous. I follow all of these blogs now, and you should DEFINITELY check them out.

This panel was AWESOME. Not only did I feel like I left with more insight on the world of blogging, but I also felt really…supported too. These are all adults, probably most of them older than me, though not necessarily, who have full time jobs, and they spend a lot of time and effort on this, and they don’t get paid for it. But they still do it because its fun, and its a hobby and a passion for them. Which is EXACTLY how I feel. I know that I spend SO many hours on this, and work my butt off on it, but its because I love it so much.

I also was stoked to meet them, and talk to them. Alyson gave me free books, which was super cool of her, and Alethea told me about a TEEN BOOK SWAP that is going on next weekend, which sounds superb. I also am really excited to check out all their blogs!

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Andrew Smith, Bill Konigsberg, Moderator, Ned Vizzini, Patricia McCormick and Maurene Goo

The next panel I went to was Keepin’ It Real with Ned Vizzini, Patrick McCormick, Maurene Goo, Andrew Smith, and Bill Konigsberg. I really was interested in this panel, because I’ve read books by Andrew and Ned, and because contemporary YA is what I tend to write. I am dabbling into zombie fiction right now but for the most part, its all contemporary. And all the authors really keep it real. They write fantastic realistic fiction about mental illness, and self harm, kids in Cambodia during Khmer Rouge, sexual identity and more. Such an inspiring panel, and also full of incredibly useful writing advice. Oh and I apologize for the not-so-good pictures. Poor Maurene was bending over when I took the picture. Oops! I will get better at the whole photography thing, I promise!

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Elana K. Arnold, Bill Konigsberg, and Josephine Angelini

The last panel I went to do was “What We Talk About When We Talk Love” with Elana K. Arnold, Josephine Angelini and Bill Konigsberg. This was was SUPER helpful because they talked about structuring romance, and how to write a good romance. I sometimes find that my romance starts to take over the story, and I lose my story so the panel was really great for that, and I got a TON of great advice there. I felt so much better about my characters, Katy and Lucas, and being able to tell their romance without ruining the whole awesome zombie part of my novel. And I also feel a little more confident to return to Evie and Alex in my baseball novel.

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After the panels, they had the signings and I was SO excited. I had been dying to meet Andrew Smith again. I met him back in May but I hadn’t read Winger yet, and now that I’ve read it, I NEEDED to get it signed and I need to tell him how amazing it is. So I did, so that was awesome :) I also was able to meet Francesca Lia Block and Cornelia Funke and tell them thank you SO much for doing interviews for this blog, along with Ned Vizzini, who was SO awesome. I was incredibly nervous doing his interview, so it felt AWESOME that he told me I did a great job :) I was also happy to meet Josephine Angelini, whose third book is right next to me, and I’m almost done with.

I am also excited to dive into the other authors like Bill Konigsberg, Patricia McCormick, Elana K. Arnold, Maurene Goo and more. I’m pretty sure my to-read list increased by at least 20 books. Easily.

So yeah, I had an AMAZING time, and I will definitely coming to this event in the future. I was able to meet some seriously cool authors, AND I feel like I gained a ton of writing advice from some talented and inspiring authors. It must have worked because I came home last night, and wrote 1000 words for my zombie novel, so that felt great!

One last thank you to Mary McCoy for putting on an awesome event, and helping to get me interviews for my blog. That was absolutely incredible and awesome. And thanks for the LA Public Library for bringing a great collection of authors together!

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Book of the Week-Dreamless

Normally, check I try REALLY hard not to do sequels as the Book of the Week, because if you haven’t read the first book, you really don’t know what’s going on, and can’t really read the Book of the Week post.

Or I’ll do sequels if I know that enough people have read the previous ones, like with Divergent or the Heroes of Olympus, which are two sequel books (Allegiant and House of Hades) that I definitely will be using as Book of the Weeks soon.

I already read Starcrossed, and to be honest, it just didn’t hook me that much. It was recommended to me by a trusted friend, someone who recommends books to me all the time, and I knew I had to keep trying, so I picked up Goddess. I read about half, put it aside, and read quite a few others books in the meantime.

Last night, I got about 75% of the way through another book, which honestly disappointed me hugely, and I gave up. Moving on down my list o’ books (which is pretty ridiculous and OCD….seriously), Dreamless was next, and I really had to give it a good try. I’m meeting Josephine next week at the Los Angeles Teen Book Fest (more on that later!), and I want to have an honest opinion about her books before I see her.

And the reason that Dreamless is the Book of the Week, and not just a mere review gets down to one point: that while the first book didn’t capture me and embrace me, the second one definitely did. I’m about a quarter of the way through Goddess, the final book of the trilogy, and can’t wait to see how it ends.

Dreamless by Josephine Angelini


GoodReads / Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Book Depository


Young Adult, Fantasy

Part of a Series?:

Yes, the second book of the Starcrossed trilogy

Please remember that while there will be NO spoilers for this particular book, there will be spoilers for the first book.

You May Like if You Liked:

The Covenant Series by Jennifer L. Armentrout, The Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan

Age Recommendation:

Please keep in mind that these are MY personal recommendations, and it varies between each person. I know that some YA is a little more adult than others, and I don’t want to encourage a younger teen to read something that isn’t appropriate for them. 


Plot Summary:

Dreamless continues the story of Helen Hamilton, a shy girl living on Nantucket Island whose desire for an ordinary life was thwarted when she discovered she is a Scion, a descendant of a Greek god and a mortal. Each Scion has a power, and Helen’s is the ability to travel to Hades.
Helen is determined to use her talent to stop a war amongst the gods and change her destiny, which is to live a life patterned after that of the tragic Helen of Troy. But her quest may cost her Lucas Delios, the boy she loves.

Dreamless really follows Helen as she uses her power to Descend into the Underworld, to discover a way to gain favor with the Furies, to help break that curse where Scions of opposite families want to kill each other, especially since Hector is a traitor and the Delios all have blood lust when around him. But the more she Descends, the more it takes a toll on herself, and everything and everyone around her.

The Bad:

It took a REALLY long to get through this book. I started it, then put it aside, then picked it up again, then put it aside. The first half of the book just really drags, as Helen Descends into Hades over and over and over and over and over again. It just got really repetitive and honestly, kind of boring. I was like, okay, something needs to start happening or I’m going to throw something. I didn’t end up actually throwing something but I did set this book aside a few times. It just didn’t compel me at first. I think once the second half picked up, and Helen had more of a direction, and so did the rest of the story, and she finally felt more of a handle on things, the book sped up and I finished the last half last night, easily.

I also *think* that Josephine is introducing a love triangle in this book, and that just made me incredibly frustrated.

The Good:

I liked the twist on the Furies in this novel. I think that’s a huge thing that brought me back into the novel. The Furies are always portrayed as evil, or at the very least, completely inconvenient. They’re still totally NOT good in this book as well. They are the cause behind the Scions having such hatred toward each other and why Ariadne and Lucas and Jason want to tear out Hector, their family, whenever they are near him. And Helen is determined to fix that. I like that her approach in fixing this is so different than anything else, and its ultimately a good thing. The solution to the problem isn’t as easy as you’d think it would be, especially with the general attitude toward The Furies.

I also like the direction that Helen is going in. She’s really stepping into her powers, and embracing exactly who she is. I know that in the first book, she was still learning but there were times when I wanted to kind of punch her in the face. But in this book, I really begin to admire the strong person that she is. Because she doesn’t just have these powers, and a physical strength, but she’s extremely clever as well, and that really makes for a strong character. I say again and again that physical strength is incredibly awesome in a character, but that a lot of people think a character can ONLY be a strong character if they’re a fighter or a warrior, or any of that, but intelligence makes for an incredibly strong character. Helen has both, definitely.

She really built up a story that left you panting for the next book. Second books need to be that bridge between the first and the third and it really does that. I immediately wanted to read the next book, which was difficult because it was 2 a.m. I really liked that Josephine filled my new addiction to Greek myths in YA lit and that she did so in such a unique way.

I love all the new appearances of gods as well too. We see so many different versions of the gods and goddesses in different books, and there’s always a different perspective of who is ‘good’ or who is ‘bad’, and I am intrigued at who is on what side in this book. I’m also interested to see what sort of havoc they wreak on the world because Josephine doesn’t hold back, you know? She really takes this idea and matures it in a way that you’re almost horrified. You’re horrified that this could be happening to any one of these characters.

And seriously, I just gotta say it? Can Daphne please just tell Helen and Lucas that they aren’t really cousins? I am so heartbroken over that, it makes me think of Jace and Clary in Mortal Instruments, and I can’t handle it. Its so full of angst and I just want to punch them both, while at the same time, hoping they’ll make out. Yeah, I said it.


3.75 out of 5

Recommended or Not:

I’m in a serious Greek myth thing going on right now, and I think I’m blaming Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Covenant series, which you all saw that I BUSTED my way through in a matter of days. I also have Dreamless left to read of this series, and House of Hades comes out on Tuesday, and I also just recently purchased Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs, which has some Greek myths thrown in there. I need a break from dystopians haha.

But that being said, I really liked THIS book of the trilogy so far. Starcrossed was really hard for me to get through, maybe because I hadn’t quite fallen into my Greek obsession yet, or maybe because I was waiting for the sequel. Its like Empire Strikes Back, or something, which we all know is infinitely better than the first one (though the first one is my favorite!), and I honestly think, yes, please read this series. I think its a unique look at the myths of Greece, which is hard, with so many books attempting to do so.

So after that long rant, yes, I recommend this book :)

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I hope you all enjoyed this week’s Book of the Week. Stay tuned for next week’s when I review Rick Riordan’s The House of Hades!

Happy Reading Everyone!

September Book Wrap Up!

Okay, viagra approved I totally copied this from my fangirl best friend, Sylvia, from FanGirlFeeels, so I want to show her much credit. Check out her own September Book Wrap Up here!

I think I want to start doing this every month because I read a LOT of books in a month and I want to be able to share at the end of the month, all the books I’ve read and reviewed in one spot. Click on each book title to read my review of it!

So here we go!

Books Pledged to Read in 2013: 200 Books

Read so Far: 150

On Track?: For once, yes!

The Enchanter Heir by Cinda Williams Chima


The Spectacular Now by Tim Tharp


The Transfer by Veronica Roth


Angelfall by Susan Ee


Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini 


Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell 


The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black


Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead


Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian 


The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey 


Half Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout 


Saving Raphael Santiago by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan


3:59 by Gretchen McNeil


Pure by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Fire flower

Deity by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Fire flower

Elixir by Jennifer L. Armentrout


Apollyon by Jennifer L. Armentrout


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What books did you read in September? What were some of your favorites, and which ones fell flat? As always, share in the comments! 

Starcrossed Book Review

Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini


You Can Find the Book At:



Barnes and Noble

Author Website

GoodReads Summary:

How do you defy destiny?

Helen Hamilton has spent her entire sixteen years trying to hide how different she is—no easy task on an island as small and sheltered as Nantucket. And it’s getting harder. Nightmares of a desperate desert journey have Helen waking parched, information pills only to find her sheets damaged by dirt and dust. At school she’s haunted by hallucinations of three women weeping tears of blood . . . and when Helen first crosses paths with Lucas Delos, visit she has no way of knowing they’re destined to play the leading roles in a tragedy the Fates insist on repeating throughout history.

As Helen unlocks the secrets of her ancestry, she realizes that some myths are more than just legend. But even demigod powers might not be enough to defy the forces that are both drawing her and Lucas together—and trying to tear them apart.

My Review:

I have very mixed feelings about this book. On one hand, I really really enjoyed it and sped through it pretty quickly. On the other hand, I was like, meh, its okay. But I’m not sure if that sort of opinion is coming from the fact that I read this absolutely fantastic book yesterday so its really hard to compare.

I really did like Starcrossed though. I liked the twist on the Greek mythology and the idea of a demigod. The only history I’d had with such things were the actual Greek myths (I’ve been obsessed for as long as I can remember) and then, of course, Percy Jackson. What I thought was really interesting about Starcrossed is that it presented a really different view of the demigod. In Percy Jackson, we get gods and goddesses that just seem to be absent, like their children were the product of one-night stands and that was that. In Starcrossed, they are absent as well but its more of a darker reason, and there is a lot in hanging in their return. The kids in PJ wish their parents would pay attention to them, and the demigods of Starcrossed struggle to keep the treaty that keeps the gods’ involvement OUT Of their life. I thought that was really interesting. Its not a happy thing to be, and to interact with those in different god families is not good.

What I really liked about the main character is that she knew something was wrong with her, and she’s known forever, but she just hasn’t been able to figure out. And when you are with her as she is going through this crazy dreams, and weird feelings, you start thinking that maybe she really is crazy. That’s the sort of good story. You don’t just automatically assume that she has special powers or that she is part of a special race, etc. You honestly, for a time, start to believe that there is something wrong with her. But once she figures out what is going on, and Lucas and his family bring her in, and show her who she is, I really started to love the story. The Greek mythology, combined with the contemporary world was just beautiful, and I loved the various powers that she was capable of. I love that they have different powers, and they discover new ones and can hone them. I liked that once she was able to accept who she was, and where she came from (for the most part), she really starts to step into her own, and she is less afraid than she was before. I feel that she becomes braver, even though the danger increases.

I do have a small complaint that the relationship between Lucas and Helen. I don’t like the idea, all the time, of a tragic romance. When Helen meets Lucas, she wants to kill him, immediately, without even really knowing him, but we learn why later, and eventually, without ruining anything, she…gets past that. And of course, she is immediately attracted to him. Then, in an even more obvious turn of events, he turns her away, but still kind of flirts with her and shows her interest, which only makes the attraction just that much worse. Lucas says that they can never be together, even though he wants to be, and refuses to tell her why. So that was a small determent from the story, for me, at least.

I will say this though, the way the book ends with their relationship is not at all what I expected and it made me immediately addicted and immediately want to go and read Dreamless, the sequel. It was unexpected because its not something that you see in a lot of books. I know that I’m being incredibly vague but I don’t want to ruin that book for you. Let’s just its a plot device that we don’t see often in recent, contemporary books, though we do see it similarly in one of my favorite series, and so I thought it was pretty juicy to add into this story.

All in all, it was an enjoyable book, one that I sped through fairly quickly, and one that I definitely will read again, and it encouraged me enough to make me want to read the second one, which I’ll hopefully be buying soon.


4 out of 5 stars