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Goddess Interrupted Paperback – March 27, 2012
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About the Author
Aimée Carter was born in 1986 and raised in Michigan, where she currently resides. She started writing fan fiction at eleven, began her first original story four years later, and hasn’t stopped writing since. Besides writing and reading, she enjoys seeing movies, playing with her puppies, and wrestling with the puzzles in the paper each morning.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
When I was a kid, each fall my teachers had the class write and present one of those horrible "What I Did Last Summer" essays, complete with pictures and funny anecdotes designed to make a classroom full of bored students pay attention.
Each year I sat and listened as my classmates in my New York City preparatory school talked about how they'd spent the summers in the Hamptons or in Florida or in Europe with their rich parents, or au pairs, or as we grew older, boyfriends and girlfriends. By the time we reached high school, the same glitzy stories got told over and over again: escapades in Paris with supermodels, all-night parties on the beaches in the Bahamas with rock starsevery student vied for attention with exploits that got wilder every year.
But my story was always the same. My mother worked as a florist, and because most of her income went to paying for that school, we never left New York City. On her days off we spent our afternoons in Central Park soaking up the sun. After she got sick, my summers were spent in the hospital with her, holding her hair back as the chemo attacked her system or flipping through the television channels looking for something to watch.
It wasn't the Hamptons. It wasn't Florida. It wasn't Europe. But they were my summers.
The one after my first six months with Henry, however, blew every single summer my classmates ever had out of the water.
"I can't believe you'd never swum with dolphins before," said James as I drove down a rough dirt road that didn't see much use. We were back in the upper peninsula of Michigan and surrounded by trees taller than most buildings. The closer we got to Eden Manor, the wider my grin spread.
"It's not like we had a ton of them in the Hudson River," I said, nudging the accelerator. We were so far from civilization that there weren't any posted speed limits, and the last time I'd been down this road, my mother had been too ill for me to risk taking advantage of it. But now, after the council had granted me immortality, the only thing I risked was my old beat-up car. So far, I liked the perks.
James bit off a piece of jerky and offered me the rest. I wrinkled my nose. "Suit yourself," he said. "You realize you're going to have to tell Henry about everything we did, right?"
I glanced at him out of the corner of my eye. "I hadn't planned on otherwise. Why? What's wrong with that?"
James shrugged. "Nothing. I figured he wouldn't be too thrilled with the idea of you spending six months in Greece with some dark, handsome stranger, that's all."
I laughed so hard I nearly drove off the side of the road. "And who was this dark, handsome stranger? I don't remember him."
"Exactly what you should say to Henry, and we'll both be in the clear," said James cheerfully.
It was a joke, of course. James was my best friend, and we had spent the whole summer together touring ancient ruins, vast cities and breathtaking islands in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Maybe one of the most romantic, too, but James was James, and I was married to Henry.
Married. I still wasn't used to it. I'd kept my black diamond wedding ring on a chain around my neck, too afraid of losing it to wear it properly, and now that we were only a mile or so away from Eden, it was time to put it back on. I'd struggled to pass the seven tests the council of gods had given me to see if I was worthy of immortality and becoming Queen of the Underworld, and because I'd wononly barelyHenry and I were now technically husband and wife.
With the silence between us for the past six months, however, it didn't feel like it. I hadn't admitted it to James, but I'd spent the summer glancing around in hopes of seeing Henry in the crowd, there even when he wasn't supposed to be. But no matter how hard I'd looked, I hadn't seen any sign of him. Granted, half a year was practically a blink of an eye for someone who had existed since before the birth of humanity. But surely a sign that he missed me wasn't too much to ask for.
I pushed my worries from my mind as the black wrought iron gate of Eden Manor came into view. No matter what had or hadn't happened during the summer, I would have the chance to be with Henry now, and I wasn't going to waste a moment.
"Home sweet home," I said as I drove through the gate. I could do this. Henry would be waiting for me, and he'd be thrilled to see me. My mother would be there, too, and I wouldn't have to go another six months without seeing her again. Everything would be okay.
James craned his neck to look at the brightly colored trees that lined the road. "All right?" he said to me.
"I should be asking you that," I said, eyeing the way he drummed his fingers on the armrest nervously. He stilled, and after a moment I added before I could stop myself, "He'll be happy to see me, right?"
James blinked and said coolly, "Who? Henry? Couldn't say. I'm not him."
That was the last answer I'd been expecting, but as soon as he said it, I realized I was an idiot for expecting anything else. James would have been the one to replace Henry as the ruler of the Underworld if I'd failed, and even though it hadn't come up on our trip, James was undoubtedly still sore about it.
"Could you at least try to pretend to be happy for me?" I said. "You can't spend your entire existence mad about that."
"I'm not mad. I'm worried," he said. "You don't have to do this if you don't want to, you know. No one would blame you."
"Do what? Not go back to Eden?" I'd already passed the tests. I'd told Henry I'd be back. We were married, for crying out loud.
"Everyone's acting like you're the be all and end all for Henry," said James. "It isn't fair to put you under that kind of pressure."
Good lord, he really was talking about not going back. "Listen, James, I know you liked Greeceso did Ibut if you think you can talk me into not going back"
"I'm not trying to talk you into anything," said James with surprising firmness. "I'm trying to make sure no one else does. This is your life. No one's going to take your mother away from you now if you decide you don't want to do this after all."
"That's notthat's not why I'm going back at all," I sputtered.
"Then why are you, Kate? Give me one good reason, and I'll drop it."
"I can give you a dozen."
"I only want one."
I sniffed. It wasn't any of his business. I'd nearly died in my attempts to save Henry from fading; I wasn't going to walk away from him because of the possibility that I might not like the Underworld. "I don't know how you do things, but I love Henry, and I'm not going to leave him just because you don't think he's good for me."
"Fair enough," said James. "But what are you going to do if Henry doesn't love you?"
I slammed on the brakes and forced the car into park so violently that the handle on the parking brake snapped off. The car was a piece of shit anyway. "That's impossible. He said he loves me, and I trust him not to lie to me. Unlike someone else I know."
I glared at him, but his expression didn't change. With a huff, I climbed out of the car, cursing as the seat belt caught on my jeans. After my few failed attempts to untangle myself, James reached over and gently undid it for me.
"Don't be mad," he said. "Please. After what happened to PersephoneI want to make sure you don't have to go through the same thing, all right? That's all."
I wasn't an idiot. I knew part of Henry would always be in love with Persephone. After all, he'd lost the will to continue after she'd given up her immortality to die and spend eternity with a mortal, and he wouldn't have felt that way if his entire existence hadn't revolved around her. But I could give him the one thing she never hadloving him in return.
"If you really are happy and you two love each other equally, then great," said James. "Good luck to you both. But if you don'tif you wake up one day and realize you're forcing yourself to love him because you think it's the right thing to do, not because he makes you happier than you've ever beenthen I want to make sure you know you have a choice. And if you ever want to leave, all you have to do is say the word, and I'll go with you."
I stormed toward the front doors of the manor, yanking hard. "Great, so if I ever decide that Henry's life isn't worth it, I'll be sure to let you know. Help me with these, will you?"
James didn't say a word as he joined me and opened the heavy doors as if they were made of feathers. I slipped inside and forced a smile, expecting to see Henry waiting for me in the magnificent entrance hall made of mirrors and marble. But the foyer was empty.
"Where is everyone?" I said, my smile fading.
"Waiting for you, I suspect." James stepped in after me, and the door slammed behind us, echoing through the hall. "You didn't think we were going to stay here, did you?"
"I didn't know there was anywhere else to stay."
He draped his arm over my shoulders, but when I shrugged it off, he shoved his hands in his pockets instead. "Of course there's someplace else. Follow me."
James led me to the center of the foyer, where amidst the white marble was a perfect circle. It was made of crystal that shimmered with a rainbow of colors in the sunlight that streamed in from the windows, and it was beautiful. When I tried to continue to the other side of the hall, he grabbed my hand and stopped me.
"This is our stop," he said, looking down.
I stared at the crystal beneath my feet, and finally I saw it. A strange, shimmering aura seemed to emanate from where we stood, and I hastily jumped out of the circle. "What is that?"
"Henry didn't tell you?" said James, and I shook my head. "It's a portal between the surface and the Underworld. Totally safe, I promise. They're like shortcuts so we don't have to take the long way around."
I wiped my palms nervously on my jeans. "The long way around?"
"If you know where to look, you can find an opening into the Underworld and travel through various caves and that kind of thing," he said. "Dark, gloomy, time-consuming, and trouble if you're skittish about having millions of pounds of rock pressing down on you."
"There's nothing underneath the surface except lava and dirt," I said, ignoring the thought of being buried alive. "Every eight-year-old knows that."
"We're gods. We're excellent at covering our tracks," said James with a boyish grin, and this time, when he offered me his hand, I took it and stepped back into the circle.
"What else are you good at?" I grumbled. "Turning water into wine?"
"That's Xander's specialty," he said. "I'm surprised he hasn't turned the Dead Sea into one big keg party by now. As for me, I can find anything or anyone or anyplace you want. Didn't you notice we never got lost in Greece?"
I shrugged. "I thought you knew the area well."
"I did, thousands of years ago. They've made some modifications since then. Close your eyes."
A rush of electrifying power swirled around us, and a roar filled my ears. Without warning, the ground dropped from under us, and I shrieked.
My heart leaped into my throat, and my eyes flew open as I tried to pull away from James, but his arm wrapped around me like steel. We were surrounded by rockno, we were inside rock, and we went through it as if it weren't any more substantial than air. James's expression was as calm as ever, as if slicing through stone and earth and god only knew what else was perfectly normal.
It seemed to last for ages, but only a few seconds later I felt solid ground underneath my feet once more. James loosened his grip on my shoulders, but my legs were trembling so badly that I clung to him even though all I wanted to do was thwack him upside the head.
"That wasn't so bad, was it?" he said cheerfully, and I glared.
"I will get you for that," I snarled. "You won't see it coming, but when it's over, you'll know what it was for."
Top Customer Reviews
I'm going to preface this review by stating that I had some major quibbles with The Goddess Test, mostly because of the author's use of the mythology. Those same quibbles were present for this book as well. Instead of harping on about how I don't like her versions of the gods/goddesses, I'm simply going to give anyone reading this a heads-up that it definitely played a factor in my rating of this book. If you're a diehard fan of Greek Mythology and want your gods/goddesses to look like those in the myths, you're not going to get a lot of that here. Just an fyi.
Okay, so: In The Goddess Test, we met Kate, who won immortality and became Henry's (or Hades') wife. In Goddess Interrupted, Kate has returned from her six months away from the Underworld, only to be met with a distant Henry and a huge threat to her and her loved ones' wellbeing: Cronus is awake and threatening to escape from his prison in Tartarus. When Henry and his brothers are taken captive by Cronus, Kate sets out to rescue them. There's only one problem: Kate doesn't actually know her way around the Underworld, and neither do James or Ava, who are accompanying her. So Kate ends up going to the one person she never wanted to meet for help: Persephone.
Funnily enough, that synopsis only took up the first half+ of the book. We meet Persephone, who wasn't exactly like I was expecting, and then have to deal with Kate having these dramatic private conversations with herself about how Henry will never love her like he loved Persephone, and she can never compare, etc.,etc.,etc. Seriously, this goes on almost the entire book, and by the end I was thoroughly fed up with Kate and her whining.Read more ›
After living above for six months, Kate cannot wait to go in Eden Manor and be with Henry. To her dismay, Henry was not happy to see her. Why is that? Henry is one emo boy, that's why. Ugh. I thought Henry's character would've have develop into a confident, less-than-sallow male lead by now. Sadly, he is still this indifferent, insecure god who cannot believe that someone such as Kate can love him. What. A. Loser. All throughout the book, I saw Kate reassuring Henry of her love, Kate doubting Henry's affection for her, and Kate doing little to prove she is worthy to be a goddess.
Like I said, I still liked the book. Perhaps my connection with Kate is too real, too emotional to ignore. You see, i hate rejection. And Kate's constant mulling over Henry's rejection of her is something I felt so strongly about. Also, Calliope is one scheming, manipulative goddess that I can't help but cheer on.
Persephone is intolerable. Ava's character is disappointing. You'd think that as Aphrodite, she'd be as vain, scheming and manipulative like Calliope. But Ava is nothing but a pretty decor beside Kate.
If you liked The Goddess Test, there's a likely possibility that Goddess Interrupted will appeal to you, too.
Now, having said that, I think Goddess Interrupted, or rather just this whole series is the type of books that people are either going to love or hate. If you're really in to pick it apart, you can. You'll find that it's a really, really loose and watered-down version of mythology, and that a lot of scenes basically contradict the basics and the core of the Hades and Persephone myth.
But if you've enjoyed The Goddess Test, Goddess Interrupted will not disappoint. It picks up right after The Goddess Test ends, and follows Kate's experiences becoming an Immortal, and deals with the problems that Calliope cause as a result of Hades and Kate in the first book. It's definitely action-packed, and there are new things, new twists, new surprises thrown at you chapter by chapter.
Goddess Interrupted is addicting in the sense that there's never a dull moment. Like I said, it's very action-packed. Things keep happening. A problem will be resolved, and a new one will appear. Carter throws curve-ball after curve-ball at you, and the ending will leave you breathless. The way she does this - the long string of problems and semi-solutions - makes you really curious to know what happens next, and after finishing, you'll want to know what happens in the next book; you'll want to keep reading.
But like I said, you're either going to hate it or love it. Or maybe you'll be a little of both, like me.
One of the things I hated (yes, hated) in Goddess Interrupted was the slut shaming. I mean, okay, I get that Ava's Aphrodite and Aphrodite's the goddess of love. But does that automatically make it okay to label her as a slut?
And Persephone. Persephone had to marry Henry.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Alright book. I love the perspective the author thought, but I felt as if she could have taken a different approach with it.Published 12 days ago by haley
I love this book! It is a great depiction of modern greek mythology. The plot is awesome and the ending definitely interests me to read the next book. Read morePublished 13 days ago by 64Driver
Amazing of course but dont wanna spoil it. Definitely recommend.!!!!Published 1 month ago by Almisah McAllister
So this one took me a little bit longer to get through. I felt like the first few chapters took some time to get moving. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Kelsey Darling
I finished this book in a day, but it was a love hate relationship. Now don't get me wrong I love the story line and the path that Kate has to take to save the people she loves. Read morePublished 9 months ago by jessica johnson
I couldn't put it down just like the previous two books. I love Aimée's style of writing. You feel like the words are true and the story and characters real.Published 10 months ago by Bean
This is the best book I have ever read. I thought the first one was good but this book, this is amazing. I just can't ever put this book down. Can't wait till I get the third book.Published 14 months ago by Destiny c.
I love this series. I love this series. Why is Amazon making me write so many words. This is annoying.Published 14 months ago by Corinna