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Antigoddess: The Goddess War #1    by Kendare Blake order for
by Kendare Blake
Order:  USA  Can
Tor, 2014 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Kendare Blake gave herself a hard act to follow in her totally engrossing Anna Dressed in Blood. She did it again with Girl of Nightmares, and now launches a new YA series, The Goddess War, based on Greek mythology and on the Trojan War with Antigoddess. It has the same strong elements of imaginative horror, action and seemingly doomed romance as the previous works.

Essentially, the immortal Greek gods and goddesses have been declining in power through the ages. But now they are slowly dying in horrific ways that somehow match their previous traits. Athena (with an affinity for owls) has feathers sprouting within her body and will eventually choke on them as they fill her lungs. Her brother, Hermes, the speedy messenger god is wasting away. Together, they seek answers.

The Earth goddess, Demeter, tells them to 'find the Oracle', Cassandra of Troy, who in this life is Cassandra Weaver. She is well known at school in Kincade, New York for her ability to predict a coin toss. Cassandra adores her boyfriend Aidan, a trust-fund orphan who is much more than he seems, as are Cassandra's brother Henry and close friend Andie. As the story opens, Cassandra starts to have gory, disturbing visions.

Athena and Hermes slowly wend their way to Kincade, fighting off Nereids en route and gaining an ally in Odysseus. They learn that they are up against family members including Hera, Poseidon, and Aphrodite, who will do anything to prolong their lives and are turning into monsters with no concern for collateral damage amongst humans. And Athena herself is pretty ruthless in forcing Cassandra to remember her previous life in Troy.

This first episode ends in a major battle of the gods and in tragedy. I can't wait to see more of The Goddess War unfold.

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