Friday, 11 January 2013

Review: Hera, Queen of Gods by T.D. Thomas

Hera couldn't care less what the other gods think, even when it's about her. And it often is. Frankly, Hera couldn't care less about anything, except doing her duty as queen - protecting order and defending the mortal world against any threats. But when the Fates go missing, Hera and a handful of other gods must temporarily become mortal to search the human world for the missing goddesses.

Hera finds that mortality begins to change her. It's not just the loss of her divine powers. She expected that. It's deeper somehow. It's affecting how she thinks, how she feels, what's important to her. And it gets much worse after she meets Justin, who defies every prejudice she once had
about mortals. At the worst possible time, and despite all her efforts, Hera's black-and-white world starts to unravel.

Torn between who she's becoming and who she needs to be in order to fulfill her duty, Hera must survive a horde of murderous creatures sent to exploit her new weakness. In the end, only Hera can stop a traitorous plot conceived by a secret alliance of ancient and new enemies, a plot that threatens to destroy not only the order Hera is sworn to protect, but all of existence itself.

Life is about one thing, and one thing only.


No one understands that better than the average teenager. For them, all the niceties of life are stripped away. Like prisoners, they are thrown in a cage, against their will, with others just as desperate as they are. Power determines who rules the cage. Power determines who survives.

Maybe that’s why we choose to become teenagers when we wander the mortal world--because teenagers, like gods, understand--in the end, it’s all about power.
I loved Hera, Queen of Gods from start to finish! The plot was fast-paced with loads of action, and the merging of Greek mythology and urban fantasy was very well done. Those of you who know me will know how much I love Greek mythology. So it's no surprise that I loved this book! Even though I've read a lot of books featuring Greek gods and goddesses, this is the first one I've read where they are, in fact, the main characters. That being said, I was really intrigued from the beginning, and T.D. Thomas did not disappoint!

Hera, Zeus, Athena, Hermes, Apollo, Artemis and Demeter are the seven Olympians who 'borrow' mortal bodies in order to search for the Fates on Earth. I really liked reading about them and discovering their unique personalities. They were, of course, very similar to the versions I've read previously, but I enjoyed this book more because it focused on them instead of, say, a demigod. Hera, Queen of Gods reminds me of Percy Jackson because of the heart-pounding action and the Greek mythology background. So if you've read and loved Percy Jackson, you'll love this!

I actually really liked Hera's character, even though she isn't supposed to be very well-liked. In fact, I definitely didn't like her in Percy Jackson. But after reading an entire book from her perspective, I've gotten a feel for her, and I found it quite easy to connect with her. I empathized with her in a lot of scenes, where she was feeling hurt because of Zeus or irritated because everyone turns to her for leadership. But she survives countless attempts on her life, and her resilience is astonishing.

Surprisingly, I also liked Zeus! Even though he's a complete ass to Hera, a lot of scenes showed that he really cared for her. I was subconsciously rooting for them to resolve their differences, but of course that wouldn't happen. Zeus has incredible strength, but he showed a really vulnerable side of him to Hera at one point, and my heart almost broke while reading it!

I loved the other gods and goddesses too - Artemis was my favourite. She's a warrior, and incredibly brave and loyal. I love how she throws herself into a fight with everything she's got. No wonder she's pretty much impossible to defeat! Apollo completely won me over with his gentle kindness and wisdom. Hermes was one god who always saw the humour in everything, and that made the book even more enjoyable for me.

While in school (yes, they attend school!), the Olympians meet Justin, a mere human. Well, okay, he's kind of special. Hera is immediately drawn to him, and he to her. Justin and Hera's slowly developing friendship and relationship was sweet to see, and Justin is practically fearless throughout the book. He saves the gods on several occasions, and they honestly wouldn't have been able to manage anything without him. He dispelled the stereotypes the gods had about humans - that they're weak and selfish. He sacrificed a lot for them, and I found that really admirable.

One warning to readers, though. T.D. Thomas isn't afraid to kill people off! I was shocked at a couple of deaths, and there were so many later that it was hard to keep track of. However, I kind of like reading about blood and gore, plus the non-stop action made it difficult for the characters to dwell on deaths. That being said, the losses were taken into stride (most of the time) and the gods focused on their mission.

Overall, Hera, Queen of Gods is an amazing debut novel by T.D. Thomas, and it was practically unputdownable. I devoured this book in two days, and I honestly can't wait for the next book in the series. Especially after that ending! Oh, cruel cliffhanger, why dost thou exist? Anyway, I'd recommend this book to all the Greek mythology lovers out there, and even if you're not into that stuff I think this would be a fun read if you like action and urban fantasy novels. This is a fun and exciting read, and I was enraptured throughout the novel.

*Thank you to T.D. Thomas for providing a copy for review* 

Rating: 4/5

1 comment:

  1. If you love YA novels with Greek mythology and a little bit of diversity. Check out The Last Prince of Atlantis. It has modern day pop culture like Rihanna,Justin Bieber a beautiful Greek goddess that kicks ass and a handsome biracial warrior and a lot of other great characters.


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