A timeless tale of love.
A rich reimagining of the enduring story of Rama and Sita.
And more importantly, a story I enjoyed reading more than I thought I will.
Consider me pleasantly surprised by this novel.
Title: Alpha Goddess by Amalie Howard
Release Date: March 4th 2014 by
Published by: Skyhorse/ Sky Pony Press
Source: JKS Communications (Thanks Sam!)
Buy: Amazon | Book Depository
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 … sacrificing the world she was born to protect.
Sera knew she's different. At school people think of her as a freak, and she only had one friend who had questionable connections. But Sera knew something wasn't right with her, and then she started having dreams about monsters, Gods, and a girl who might or might not be her. Sera is actually a reincarnation of Lakshmi, a very powerful immortal Indian goddess. As she struggles to come into terms of her new reality, that she and her family aren't really what they seem, she's torn between what her place is in the world and the war against Good and Evil, and between a mysterious boy named Dev and her bestfriend Kyle.
I've never read anything that explores and incorporates Hindu mythology in the story as extensively as this novel did. It's quite a new, refreshing and fascinating experience that I found myself just sitting in a corner, watching as the story unfolds. Everything is interesting for me, and the way Amalie Howard spins a tale just kept me inside Sera's world in a frantic pace as one action scene to another happens until I'm breathless and it's all over.
I didn't care much for Sera at the start. She was your typical loner, a little weird and misunderstood because of her appearance and her generally quiet self. She was too stubborn for her own good, and was your typical rebellious teenager deep inside. Combine that with protective parents and you have quite a few fights, yelling and chaos within the family. But as secrets come out bit by bit, I start to appreciate Sera for being stubborn for a completely different reason. She gradually lived to her name as a reborn Goddess.
I'm still torn between Dev and Kyle. I naturally gravitate towards the bad boy, and in this case, it's Kyle, but Dev had this sort of calming, charming, mysterious personality that just draws me to him. Strong, wise and he provides the stability Sera needs in her life. It did shock me how Kyle, with all his tattoos and piercings and the I-don't-really-care attitude, left me a little bit confused and unconvinced. It feels so cliche for the girl to end up with her best friend, and it's not like Kyle doesn't have his own good points. He wants to become good when even his own mother thinks he's evil. He likes Sera for all he's worth and would do anything for her. Still in the end, I like Dev. It might say something about my preference in my YA male leads, but I find him a whole lot more interesting and agreeable in the end.
Alpha Goddess' is not your usual story. It portrays the different kinds of love, the kind that defy the odds which was evident in Sera's parents story, the one that is patient and waits like that of Micah for Sophia, one that sacrifices anything and everything like Kyle's to Sera and one that understands and let's go when they know they have to, like Lakshmi and Vishnu's. It's still something I had a hard time understanding, because those kinds of love is not something I was used to seeing in a lot of YA novels I've read, but it's beautiful in an unexpected sort of way. A different take, a different perspectives to the many facets of love and loving.
Mythology played a very large part in this story, and I loved every second I spent reading and meeting all these Gods and Goddesses and how they are so well incorporated in the book. Amalie Howard crafted a convincing, bewitching world, carving a space for Hindu mythology to flourish in her story while doing such a good job retelling an epic love story of the Ramayana, of Rama and Sita, the battle between good and evil. It's such a familiar yet different take on myths, legends, epics, Gods and Goddesses that I can't help but let myself be swept away with the story. The gradual increase of pace until it was a full on action packed, thrilling novel makes Alpha Goddess such a good read!
Overall, Alpha Goddess made me remember why I loved Amalie Howard's writing. I fell in love with her story in an instant!
Win the following books:
Content (plot, story flow, character):
Holding off that 1 star because it still takes me a while to digest Sera's decision at the end. As it contradicts a lot of my beliefs in love and somehow it left me feeling more confused than happy for her. I still don't like Kyle, though I adore Nate! A lot of her decisions didn't quite make sense for me, and oftentimes I felt like it drove the story in a completely different direction than what would made sense, but still it was a good story.
Shining: Worthy of a Goddess' Love!
I adore this cover!
I adore this cover!