Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Alpha Goddess by Amalie Howard [ARC REVIEW]

TITLE: Alpha Goddess
AUTHOR: Amalie Howard
PUBLISHER: Sky Pony Press
PUB DATE: Mar 18 2014
In Serjana Caelum’s world, gods exist. So do goddesses. Sera knows this because she is one of them. A secret long concealed by her parents, Sera is Lakshmi reborn, the human avatar of an immortal Indian goddess rumored to control all the planes of existence. Marked by the sigils of both heaven and hell, Sera’s avatar is meant to bring balance to the mortal world, but all she creates is chaos. A chaos that Azrath, the Asura Lord of Death, hopes to use to unleash hell on earth.

Torn between reconciling her past and present, Sera must figure out how to stop Azrath before the Mortal Realm is destroyed. But trust doesn’t come easy in a world fissured by lies and betrayal. Her best friend Kyle is hiding his own dark secrets, and her mysterious new neighbor, Devendra, seems to know a lot more than he’s telling. Struggling between her opposing halves and her attraction to the boys tied to each of them, Sera must become the goddess she was meant to be, or risk failing, which means sacrificing the world she was born to protect.

Source: Goodreads


“Don't let someone else decide who you are. You decide. You are free to make that choice no matter where you've come from. Blood does not define you.”

No. Just no.

There are too many things I found cringe worthy and dislikable about Alpha Goddess.

Sera doesn’t strike me as an ideal protagonist. She’s whiny, insecure and well, just downright annoying. It’s not that I haven’t encountered character like this but hers was too intolerable. At first I thought she was just indifferent, in a way that teenagers are trying to find their place in this world and all that blatant coming of age stuff. When she found out she was a goddess, and that people in her life have been hiding it from her, instead of trying to learn about who she is, she goes off somewhere to “get away from her parents.” Typical.

What triggered my disappointment in her was not even this factor. I think that would have been a bearable action. What really pissed me off was the idea that once she found out about her ‘true form’ and that her mother made her “ugly” to hide her apparently “overly gorgeous goddess looks” the first thing she thinks of is that the look her mother gave her was the reason she didn’t fit in in school. No! I beg to differ. The reason she didn’t fit in is not because of how she looks, it was because those kids were bullies. They were mean and they thrived over seeing her curl up in a ball and feel miserable about herself. And her mother agreeing to her thoughts made me want to strangle her! I’m not a parent (yet) but I know how wrong that is to say!

Speaking of Sera’s mother, don’t even get me started on how twisted she perceives things. When she and Sera discovered the disturbing dreams her daughter was having, dreams that were connected to Sera’s goddess-self, the first thing her mother focused on was arguing with Sera about Kyle, Sera’s best friend. Really? I know you have issues with the guy being around your daughter, but really? Where are your priorities, woman?

Another thing that pissed me off was Sera’s mom telling her that she should have come to her about the awful stuff that was going on. Bullsh*t! You knew that your daughter was confused and stressed over something she can’t comprehend but you chose to keep your knowledge of it a secret at the very last second, when you had every opportunity to help her by telling her the truth. But what did you do? You grounded her instead. This isn’t a teen rebellion for you to do such a sh*tty move!

I am not sold either on the love triangle built over Sera, Kyle and Dev’s relationship. Not only did she lead two guys on, she also didn’t bother choosing between them in the end. And she’s proud to say that “a girl has to have options?” I know that was meant to be a joke but it doesn’t change the fact that she really is keeping both guys for keeps. While I’m all for independent ladies not leaning to man for support, and choosing to fly solo instead, this was ridiculous!

The one thing that intrigued me was Sera and Kyle’s adventure through the depths of hell, travelling from portal to portal in the hopes of escaping, and making it back to earth. The battle between good and evil would have been an epic action scene, but I was too focused on counting how many times Sera would tell the villains that “You can’t do this” or “You won’t succeed” to enjoy much of it. Why don’t you just shut up and beat the crap out of them? Argh!

I picked up Alpha Goddess in the hopes of finding diversity in the YA world. The Hindu mythology was what I thought to be the highlight of this book. Since I don’t know much of it, I was hoping this was going to be something I’m going to enjoy learning about. It pains me to say this but, while I find the Hindu gods and goddesses story unique and inspiring, the book’s entirety just did not work for me.

*Thank you, Sky Pony Press and NetGalley for granting my request to view Alpha Goddess.

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