I read, I write, and I majored in German and Muggle Studies. my favorite genres are historical fiction, science fiction, and fantasy. Lookout for reviews of the YA and MG persuasions!
To see the cover, click here.
Portia Griffin, a girl who has not had a voice for the past sixteen years, discovers she does have one, after all--but that it isn't exactly natural. She, along with those close to her, must face the consequences of her startling lineage. There's Felix, with whom she shares a powerful bond, and the handsome, but brash new student Max.
I enjoyed the beginning of the book. Portia and Felix's friendship was heartwarming . As a reader you can't help but root for Portia, a girl who has accepted who she is and is happy to enjoy what she has. The high school environment seemed a little idealized, but it was not completely beyond the realm of believability.
At first I did not mind the few pop culture references sprinkled in the book, but then they began to grate a bit. I understood the music portions contributed to the plot, but the other tidbits here and there saturated and dated the story. I think it was this, along with the treatment of the mythology aspects of the story, that made me so disappointed.
POTENTIAL SPOILERS BELOW---
I really enjoyed the Odyssey as a high schooler, even before I really grasped just how timeless it was. I know that my fellow students weren't as enthused as I was about it, and I realize that this book is trying to reach teens at their level, so to speak, but that doesn't change the fact that I was annoyed with the portrayal of the gods and goddesses.
They are supposed to intervene and toy with the lives of mortals, yes, but they came across as really not much more than cardboard cut-outs. I found their forays into the world of technology to be especially painful to read. I couldn't also help but wonder how the sirens could possibly be more powerful than the deities of Olympus. And no description of Zeus, or Ares? Why didn't Athena live up to her name as the goddess of wisdom?
Portia's transformation was integral to the plot, so it was painful to read for different reasons--the author had established her, initially, as a likable character. That made her ugliness especially appalling, although by the middle of the book I was all ready weary of the love triangle.
The pace of the story seemed all right, although the climax was a little bland. I also felt like the death of Portia's mentor was unnecessary, unless, of course, it happens to be necessary to set up the plot of the sequel.
Perhaps readers who enjoy the high school setting and love triangles in general would like this book, but I could not really take it seriously once the mythological background in the story was established.
•note--I received a copy of this book from Diversion Books via Netgalley in exchange for honest feedback.