Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Alpha Goddess

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.
from goodreads.com

Beth says 3 Stars...
I really like the idea of this book.  I'm not particularly familiar with Hindu mythology, so the idea of learning something through the novel was exciting.  Granted, I do know more now than I did when I started the book.  I know it's common, but I really wish that the end notes that actually described the gods, goddesses, and other parts of the philosophy and mythology would have been at the beginning.  I probably would have been less confused and had a lot more fun while reading it if I'd known more about the different gods, goddesses, and other mythological players.  I had an issue with the pacing of the book and its distribution of information.  Although the plot summary makes it seem like the book moves quickly into the main action, that isn't the case.  It took (for me) too long for Howard to explain the basics of the plot; we spent far too much time with Sera attempting to figure out what's going on with her.  Once the action finally got going the book pulled me in, but it just took too long.  Had I not been both a compulsive book finisher and given this for review, I might have put it down.

Sera handled the situation pretty well.  I kind of liked her as a character and thought that she did have a bit of depth.  However, I couldn't muster up really strong feelings for her even when she was in danger.  I didn't emotionally connect with her or her journey.  There is, of course, the requisite love triangle putting our magical heroine in between two extremely different, yet still amazingly hot, guys.  The different heros vying for Sera's attention do make sense, but I sometimes get irritated with how overused the plot device is.  Of course, one guy appeals to her light side and the other to her dark side like romantic duct tape.  I actually want a story about Sera's parents and more details about how they ended up together because that would be juicy.  I guess that's telling; I found the vaguely detailed romance of the main character's parents more compelling than the central love triangle of the book.

The book was just okay.  I feel as though this might be the set up of a series and I'm a bit torn as to whether or not to continue if Howard does.  On one hand I now have a better grasp of the mythology, but on the other I don't find the main character particularly compelling.  This might be good for someone who's really into Hindu mythology, but I've heard a few things about some inaccuracies.  Regardless, this one was just okay.
ebook from Publisher


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