Tag: Aimee Carter

Guest Review: Pawn by Aimee Carter

Posted November 21, 2013 by Whitley B in Reviews | 0 Comments

PawnWhitley’s review of Pawn (The Blackcoat Rebellion) by Aimee Carter


For Kitty Doe, it seems like an easy choice. She can either spend her life as a III in misery, looked down upon by the higher ranks and forced to leave the people she loves, or she can become a VII and join the most powerful family in the country.

If she says yes, Kitty will be Masked—surgically transformed into Lila Hart, the Prime Minister’s niece, who died under mysterious circumstances. As a member of the Hart family, she will be famous. She will be adored. And for the first time, she will matter.

There’s only one catch. She must also stop the rebellion that Lila secretly fostered, the same one that got her killed …and one Kitty believes in. Faced with threats, conspiracies and a life that’s not her own, she must decide which path to choose—and learn how to become more than a pawn in a twisted game she’s only beginning to understand.

This book had a pretty great premise to it, but it failed to deliver.  Almost all the parts I was eager to read about were straight-up missing from the story.  Oh, no, Kitty has to stop a rebellion!  Or…not really the whole book is family squabbles.  Well, I guess there’s a reason no one wanted to put that in the summary blurb.

The first half of this book, despite some rough patches, was actually pretty good.  I liked the set-up, and I liked (most) of the dystopian world, I liked the transformation Kitty went through to become Lila and all the hiccups she had to deal with learning to not only look like a new person but also act like a new person.  At that point, the narrow focus on a single family and the bubble-like setting worked.  It didn’t mind that we didn’t get to see the rest of the world, because we were still trying to establish the major players.

And then the latter half of the book just fell apart.  There were a great number of moments where people said “I can’t do this because reasons” or “You have to do it this way because reasons” or “so-and-so did this because we needed a plot.”  There was very little sense behind any of it.  For a lot of things, I felt  like the author knew what the reasons were and she just forgot to tell us, and we couldn’t figure it out on our own because we didn’t get enough context to fill in the details.  Maybe if we understood how the power structure in this world works, we’d know why certain people can’t be killed or certain truths can’t be told, but we don’t.  It’s also in the second half of the book that the tiny cast really causes problems.  The book so badly wants to have a rebellion and massive upheavals and such in the country, but at the same time it’s unwilling to expand past the Hart family, so instead of having country-wide goings-on, we’ve just got this one family that has a lot of in-fighting.  The series may be titled “The Blackcoat Rebellion,” but you’ll never see a single Blackcoat actually do anything in this novel.   If the book had intended to be all about the squabbles of a single powerful family, that probably could have worked, but trying to mix rebellion and familicide as if they’re the same thing created an awkward disconnect in this novel.

I also wasn’t a big fan of the setting in this book.  At first, I was pretty happy.  I could actually believe that our country would take the concept of meritocracy out to such extremes, and it made me smile to see that used as a base for the dystopian.  But then, in the midst of all that fine-ness, we suddenly also get “and also we shoot people in the head for very little reason.”  Um…way to be needlessly evil.  Wasn’t locking people into shitty jobs and giving them inadequate resources enough to qualify as evil?  Did you really have to include “Elsewhere?”  (Oh, and don’t get me started on Elsewhere.  The summary is basically “no part of this idea is actually feasible.”)  Also, there’s my biggest problem with the setting, which is that Kitty has people on-hand from page one telling her that the government is a big giant lie.  Half the fun of a dystopian is having the main character come to terms with the fact that everything she’s learned is wrong and bad, but here, that’s replaced with everyone and their grandma saying “no, this is totally all bull.”

Grade: 3 out of 5

This title is available from Harlequin Teen.  You can purchase it here or here in e-format.  This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review: Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter.

Posted March 28, 2012 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Rowena’s review of Goddess Interrupted by Aimee Carter.

Main Character: Kate
Love Interest: Henry
Series: Goddess Test, Book 2
Author: Facebook|Twitter|Goodreads

Kate Winters has won immortality. But if she wants a life with Henry in the Underworld, she’ll have to fight for it. Becoming immortal wasn’t supposed to be the easy part. Though Kate is about to be crowned Queen of the Underworld, she’s as isolated as ever. And despite her growing love for Henry, ruler of the Underworld, he’s becoming ever more distant and secretive.

Then, in the midst of Kate’s coronation, Henry is abducted by the only being powerful enough to kill him: the King of the Titans. As the other gods prepare for a war that could end them all, it is up to Kate to save Henry from the depths of Tartarus. But in order to navigate the endless caverns of the Underworld, Kate must enlist the help of the one person who is the greatest threat to her future. Henry’s first wife, Persephone.

This is the second book in the Goddess Test series by Aimee Carter and it was another enjoyable story. In this story, Kate has won immortality but things aren’t as simple as one would think after the first book. Carter does a great job of throwing the reader into the thick of things in the story. With every page that I read in this book, I was thrown deeper and deeper into the thick of things and I couldn’t read fast enough.

In the first book, I really liked Kate because I understood what she was going through and I felt her pain with things with her Mom, things with Henry and the anxiety of the Goddess test, it was understandable but in this book, she’s got different worries but she was a lot more annoying than I remember her being in the other book and while it didn’t taint my enjoyment of the book too much but there were plenty of times when I wanted to strangle her because she came off extremely needy and I wanted to bean Henry in the head for being, well the way he was in this book. But as needy as Kate came off in parts of this book, I really liked her character anyway. I liked that she was fair and she cared. She’s a complex character and it was a definite treat reacquainting myself with her again.

Things really heated up in this book, I mean when Henry gets abducted and Kate has to turn to the last person she wants to turn to for help in saving the people that have come to mean a great deal to me, I was happy. I mean, the story really took off and I was totally entertained. So many things pop off and I couldn’t read the book fast enough. I thought Carter did a great job of telling this story and she did a great job in making me care enough about the characters in the book to want to finish the book.

My one gripe with the book is the ending. I spent a great deal of time trying to read like I was a speed reader (I’m not) and then I got to the end and I had to read it three times before I put it away because I was completely thrown. It’s one of those cliffhangers that made it hard for me to sleep but aside from that, this was an entertaining read and I’m so glad that I read it.

..and that’s your scoop!

This book was received through NetGalley and is available from Harlequin Teen.
Buy the book: B&N|Amazon
Book cover and blurb credit: http://barnesandnoble.com

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Review: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter.

Posted May 19, 2011 by Rowena in Reviews | 7 Comments

Main Character: Kate
Love Interest: Henry
Series: The Goddess Test, Book 1
Author: Website|Facebook|Twitter|Goodreads

It’s always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate’s going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won’t live past the fall.Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he’ll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.

Kate is sure he’s crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she’ll become Henry’s future bride, and a goddess.

I was kind of hesitant to start this book because I made the mistake of reading some early reviews of it and the reviews that I saw didn’t leave much to be desired but I went ahead and read this book anyway.

Boy am I so glad that I read this book because the romantic in me was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. It took me no time at all to get into the thick of this story and I enjoyed every minute. Getting to know Henry and getting to know Kate was so much fun. This book isn’t one of those light and fluffy stories but I will say this, it was interesting and totally engaging. The story didn’t start off with a bang, it was kind of slow to build but I’m so glad that I stuck with the story. Carter did a great job of sucking me right into Kate’s story.

This story isn’t a retelling of Hades and Persephone’s story and I think that’s what I thought I was going to get by reading the blurb. Kate is not Persephone, she is just Kate. Henry needs a wife to help him rule the underworld and Kate needs to pass a bunch of tests to see if the Gods deem her worthy to trust with the gift of immortality. The story does not revolve around the tests. These aren’t tests that Kate can study for and I liked that. The story revolved around Kate, coming into her own and finding her own answers to pretty much everything.

Henry was a solid hero. He was kind, he was honest and he was strong. I adored him right from the very beginning and the more I got to know him, the more I loved him. I thought he was a great match for Kate and rejoiced in their ups and was saddened by their downs.

The secondary characters in this story were great additions to an already remarkable read and I adored them all. Overall, it was a solid read and I’m so glad that I read it. There is some religious speak in this book but it’s not preachy. There isn’t any of that “COME TO MY CHURCH” business going on in here and really, I just enjoyed the heck out of this.

Kudos to Aimee Carter for writing a wonderfully entertaining story.

..and that’s your scoop!

Buy the book: B&N|Borders|Amazon|Book Depository
Book cover and blurb credit: http://barnesandnoble.com

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Guest Review: The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter

Posted May 2, 2011 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 2 Comments

Mary’s review of The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter.

Every girl who has taken the test has died. Now it’s Kate’s turn. It’s always been just Kate and her mom–and now her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate’s going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won’t live past the fall. Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld–and if she accepts his bargain, he’ll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests. Kate is sure he’s crazy–until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she’ll become Henry’s future bride, and a goddess. If she fails..

The blurb on this sounded so awesome and I was so excited to read this book, considering I LOVE Greek Mythology. With a serious passion. I couldn’t wait to see what happened with the whole Hades myth and how it could be translated into modern times. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. Hades was not the dark, brooding, mysterious hero promised in the blurb. He was just sad and angsty. Emo, even. He sucked all the joy out of the room. Oh, and supposedly he’s a virgin. (Really? I don’t think so. Hades raped and pillaged, just like all the other gods. Not a single virginal think about him.)

Kate had the potential to be an awesome heroine, triumphing over the difficult tests set forth by the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus. But…conquering the Seven Deadly Sins? (which are from a completely different belief system, btw) Come on, Kate, go out and kick some ass! Don’t just sit there, moaning about your oh-so-terrible circumstances to your best friend (who’s dead), dressed in a super-awesome outfit. Go out there and complete some truly heroic tasks! I was truly expecting more, considering the blurb hints at it, what with every girl who’s taken the test dying and all. It doesn’t even mention that they die because they’re murdered, not because of the “test”. At the beginning of the story, Kate and her very sick mother move to the small town of Eden. Kate’s been nursing her mother for the past several years, ignoring her own needs (friends, boyfriend, high school, fun – all that stuff). She loves her mother, and she’s willing to give all that stuff up so she can spend more time with her mom. But Mom makes Kate go to school where Kate meets James, an insta-BFF, and Ava, an insta-enemy/possible friend. Life wouldn’t be too terrible there if her mom weren’t dying of cancer. Kate might even be happy in Eden.

Then, through a series of events (including Ava’s death and revival at Henry’s hand then her death again), Kate meets Henry, who offers her the choice of keeping her mother alive and not in pain for as long as she needs to say goodbye. In return, she needs to stay with him in his mansion for six months of the year. During those six months, she’ll be tested and, if she survives, she’ll not only become a goddess, she’ll be his wife, save him from fading (death), and help rule the Underworld. At first, he has a hard time convincing her that he’s actually Hades and a god, even after he saves Ava and her mother (though not from death – more like a staying of the inevitable). But she eventually believes and agrees.

The connection between Hades and Kate is lackluster at best. I hoped for some sparks, some intrigue or something. Instead, there is friendship (which isn’t a bad thing. Kate could do worse than have someone like Hades on her side) with no fireworks. But Kate convinces herself she’s in love with him, despite the fact that there’s more of a connection between her and James. Kate is a sweet character, coming very close to being a goody-two-shoes. Incredibly selfless and tough. She needs to be — deserves to be — challenged. But she isn’t. Even after she makes the deal with Hades, her life doesn’t change all that much – she hangs out with Ava and even gets to see her dying mother every night, since Hades is keeping her alive. Where’s the challenge? Is it when Kate can’t leave the grounds of the mansion? Or is it when Hades asks her to stop eating? (Which, what is that all about? Asking someone to stop eating? How is eating gluttony?) Such potential in this story. Wasted. *sigh* (SPOILER HERE) And, can I just ask, WTF was up with the ending? She loves Hades, marries him then leaves. Okay, I guess I can deal with that. It’s part of the myth that Persephone leaves the Underworld for six months of the year to spend time on Earth. But, why is it that, as soon as she says goodbye to the love of her life and steps off the grounds, she immediately runs into James (the instant BFF she had when she started HS in Eden) and they decide to jet off to Greece for the summer? Huh?!? Why didn’t Hades leave for a bit, so they could spend time together? He’s able to leave the Underworld in the myth, he just chooses not to leave very often. Again, sigh. Maybe part of the reason I’m being so hard on this book is because I adore mythology, and this novel strayed so far from it that it bore little resemblance to the stories that captured my heart. It could also be that I’m in a bit of a reading slump and seem to be cranky with books lately. But read it and judge for yourself. There are a ton of reviewers out there who’ve loved this story. It just didn’t do it for me.

Rating: 2.5/3.0

This book is available from Harlequin Teen. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

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