Merin is a teacher, a book blogger, a baseball addict (Go Cardinals!), lover of music, movies and TV crime dramas, and YA/MG connoisseur. Follow me on my blog at http://ahandfulofconfetti.wordpress.com!
First of all, can I talk about this cover? I'm thinking that the girl is Persephone, and she's probably straining toward the sun, but her pose is really ... awkward. The way her arms are sort of thrust back is just weird. Definitely not a favorite.
ANYWAY. The Goddess Legacy is a set of novellas that focus on the gods/goddesses prior to Kate's birth and eventual ascension to Queen of the Underworld. I think it was this factor - the lack of Kate - that made me enjoy them more than I did Goddess Interrupted (look, I loved Kate in the first book, but her back and forth, constant self-doubt, and whining on about how Henry will never love her like he loved Persephone in the second book just grated on me). Plus, I also really enjoyed seeing the background to Ms. Carter's mythology, because she definitely did some things quite a bit differently than they were in the original stories.
The first story focused on Hera/Calliope, and it definitely explained exactly why Calliope turned into what she is in the books (vague statement is vague). It was hard to read her fall from a youthful, strong woman to one who became so embittered because of her husband's constant affairs. The second story focused on Aphrodite/Ava, and actually set up her development in the third book quite a bit; you really got to see the way she showed her love to everyone, and how she was able to love in different ways. The fourth story (yes, I skipped Persephone's on purpose; I'll get to her in a minute) was probably my favorite, because it gave us some background on Hermes/James. I loved his interaction with Tuck and the way this lone girl had such an impact on him. Plus I have a thing for folks who are headstrong and do what they believe is right even if they're told not to. (And I loved Iris!) And the last story was Hades/Henry's story; it definitely showed how beaten down he was after the death of each of Persephone's replacements. You could feel his weariness and exhaustion with his life, and it also allowed the reader to see behind the solemn mask he so often wears in the series. My only complaint about this was the random switch to third-person for Henry's story; all the others are in first-person, so it was kind of jarring to make that switch.
As for Persephone's story, let me just say that I REALLY did not like her. At all. She cheated on Henry without pause or thought, yet was broken-hearted when one of her lovers did the same to her. It took her ages to realize just how much she was hurting him, and even when she figured it out, she still didn't care. Yes, I get that she didn't want to marry him, and I get that she hated being away from the sun and living underground, and yes, maybe someone somewhere should have stepped in to ask what she really wanted (and I'm thinking their was some interference from Hera somewhere in there as well), but honestly, I don't think I've ever read a character who complains as much as Persephone did. I was thoroughly fed up with her story well before the end of it, and was so glad when they finally granted her mortality so she'd just go away already. It's very hard to be sympathetic to a character's plight when that character does nothing to ingratiate herself!
All in all, this was a nice installment between the second and third books in the series. Having just finished The Goddess Inheritance, I can see how well these novellas tied in to the overall plot, so while they're not absolutely necessary to read, they definitely help fill in some holes and answer some questions. Considering that this book is my favorite of the series, I'm very glad I gave it a read (Persephone excluded, of course).
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