Published: Harlequin Teen (April 19, 2011)
Series: Book #1
Source: ARC via NetGalley
GoodReads Summary: 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.
My Thoughts: So I'd heard a bit of early hype about The Goddess Test through some trusted bloggers.
I love it when hype is justified. And that cover is breathtaking.
The book starts out awfully heavy. Kate's mom is extremely sick and has been given only a limited number of months to live. Kate basically goes through each day expecting her mother to die. That being one of my largest fears, it really tugged at my heart. Aimee Carter did a great job of showing us Kate's grief and fear of life without her mother. I won't lie to you, my eyes welled up at least twice in the first half of the book. I was a little nervous that I'd get bored with Kate in the beginning, but she proved to be a strong, determined girl. She is smart and determined and will do ANYTHING for her mother. I love selflessness in a protag. Though I do think she adjusted to her new surroundings and situation way too quickly, as if it were the most normal thing in the world.
The romance in TGT is something of an rarity in YA--the girl is seeking out the guy, where the guy is resisting. And I'm not talking the "I can't love you because I'll kill you" pseudo-resisting. I'm talking "she's just a friend" resisting. THIS IS GOOD STUFF, PEOPLE. The intrigue is played up and it is pretty frickin' suspenseful. Not to mention that the resistance is not only an amazing Muse song, but fuels the SLOW BUILD that I love ever so much. And it makes you love Henry all the more.
The one thing that bothered me was the friendship with Ava. Maybe I'm evil, but if some chick pretended to be my friend and then vengefully--and unjustly--taunted me with my biggest fears (my two biggest are spiders and tornadoes. Picture a tornado of spiders. PICTURE IT.) Seriously. Yeah, no thanks. I went through the first 3/4 of the book despising Ava.
I do wish I would've brushed up a bit on my Greek mythology and the 13 Olympians before reading this book, but how was I supposed to know exactly what to read? I thought my freshman year of high school class would be enough. Halfway through the book, I remembered that I usually ditched the first half of the school day, so I missed that class. HOWEVER, this did not detract from the experience. I will be anxiously awaiting book two, despite the fact that I TOTALLY called the ending of book one.