It's Bonus Book Review Saturday, and today I'll be bringing you a book that combines Greek culture and mythology with time travel…
Necklace of the Goddess Athena
Phevos and his sister Daphne are time travelers from ancient Greece. Unaware of the reason their father has sent them to modern-day Athens, they settle down in this new world with the assistance of two orphaned siblings. Soon, the four youngsters stumble upon vital information that can help them find their missing parents.
When they discover a secret cave in the Acropolis foothills, a precious finding causes them to become involved in a conflict between two Gods, one of which becomes their protector and the other, their worst nemesis. Who will prevail when the rival Gods meet again and will the mortal bystanders survive to tell the tale?
My Review: 2 Stars
I wish I had more good things to say about this book, but sadly I found myself disappointed.
First off, it's over 600 pages long, and the story moved so slowly that I lost interest every second page. I feel like the author could have told the story with 50% of the words used--overwriting was a big problem with this book. To me, it seemed like the author forced an emotional turmoil to try to help us connect with the characters, but it felt forced and contrived.
To me, it seemed like English was the author's second language. The construction of sentences and expressions were off--not incorrect, just abnormal, as if they were accustomed to thinking in another language and used that construction in their writing.
There was A LOT of purple prose, which I can't stand. For example: “Ksenia…” he whispered and then the velvet of his lips came to seal hers with a silent vow of love in a tender kiss that was the first one for both of them. -- Definitely not my favorite!
The book is written primarily in passive, there are a lot of run-on sentences, the grammar is a bit iffy, there's missing punctuation and punctuation in the wrong places, adverbs like "funnily enough" are all over the place, and there is a lot of word repetitions. The overuse of adjectives and adverbs takes me out of the story.
The POV doesn't really work. The book does a lot of head-hopping! It also tells what's going to happen, but not in a good way. Things like, "Little did X character know that his world was going to change forever". A bit too cliché, and poor writing in my opinion.
I found it odd that the author focused on details, like the dialect of Greek spoken by the characters. Some details are too niche-specific to be general entertainment. There are also a lot Greek expressions that aren't explained or translated, so they don't have meanings to the average reader
To finish it off, there was no real climax. I never felt a moment of panic, tension, or fear for the main characters.
Here's a Taste:
Efimios stood at the edge of the precipice. Down below, the sea raged with tremendous force. A howling wind caused his long robes to billow like broken sails on a ship that’s lost in a storm. He opened his hand and stared at the necklace with loathing. The salty bite of the wind stung his eyes but funnily enough, that gave him comfort. He couldn’t have chosen a better place for what he was about to do.
“Athena, almighty Pallada! Protectress of the city of Athens, hear me!” he cried out with all his might and yet, his voice was barely audible over the deafening crash of the waves on the rocks below. As he stretched out his hand, the sky erupted with lightning and loud crashes of thunder. The pendant was now hidden from view inside his fist, but its golden chain was swirling in the wind, whipping his hand. Undeterred and not in the slightest afraid, he looked up to the rumbling heavens, his teeth clenched, his eyes alight with fury.
“Here in my hand,” he yelled, “I hold your necklace that you entrusted me with when I was only a child. For the services that I have offered you devotedly for the protection of Athens, you have repaid me with cruelty! I could perhaps understand it if you were to punish only me but my son? What has Phevos ever done to you? He is just a boy! How could you do this to him?”
Efimios lowered his hand to take one last look at the necklace. It glowed brilliantly as lightning bolts ripped the sky but its beauty was lost upon him.
“Do you forget so easily?” he burst out, his face contorted with wild exasperation. “I have been at your command for so long! And this is how you thank me? Did you think that following your orders has been easy for me? Because of you, I belonged nowhere and to no one, having anything but a normal life… but since you chose to repay me in this manner, surely you cannot expect me to serve you any longer! Indeed, this is where it all ends! Your wretched cave in the Acropolis hill will never be used again! I have made sure of that! As for your precious necklace, this evil noose that you had me wear around my neck, I have minded it for you long enough!”
With a forceful throw, the necklace of Goddess Athena disappeared in the vastness of the foamy sea. A myriad of thunderbolts flashed all around Efimios as he started to walk away from the precipice. He quickened his pace, and his face brightened with the promise of a smile. His heart felt lighter already. Without a shadow of a doubt, he knew that one day his suffering would end.
About the Author:
Effrosyni Moschoudi was born and raised in Athens, Greece. As a child, she often sat alone in her granny’s garden scribbling rhymes about flowers, butterflies and ants. She’s passionate about books and movies and simply couldn’t live without them. She lives in a quaint seaside town near Athens with her husband Andy and a naughty cat called Felix. Her debut novel, The Necklace of Goddess Athena, is a #1 Amazon bestseller in Greek & Roman literature. The first part of her romance trilogy, The Lady of the Pier - The Ebb, is an ABNA Quarter-Finalist.
Find the book on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I5GXHCO
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