Categories
Fantasy Romance

Read Wicked Beauty

Read Wicked Beauty (Dark Olympus, #3)

*A scorchingly hot modern retelling of Helen of Troy, Achilles, and Patroclus that’s as sinful as it is sweet.*

In Olympus, you either have the power to rule…or you are ruled. Achilles Kallis may have been born with nothing, but as a child he vowed he would claw his way into the poisonous city’s inner circle. Now that a coveted role has opened to anyone with the strength to claim it, he and his partner, Patroclus Fotos, plan to compete and double their odds of winning.

Neither expect infamous beauty Helen Kasios to be part of the prize…or for the complicated fire that burns the moment she looks their way.

Zeus may have decided Helen is his to give to away, but she has her own plans. She enters into the competition as a middle finger to the meddling Thirteen rulers, effectively vying for her own hand in marriage. Unfortunately, there are those who would rather see her dead than lead the city. The only people she can trust are the ones she can’t keep her hands off—Achilles and Patroclus. But can she really believe they have her best interests at heart when every stolen kiss is a battlefield?

Of the three books in this series, this plays the loosest with the source material overall, but then clings a little too close in other spots. Some things seemed to be included just to show that it was referencing the Iliad (Ajax), but would have been more powerful if those roles had been expanded (Hector).

The romance in this was a bit messy, starting with an established partnership in an open relationship and adding a third person, with some hurt feelings and bad behavior on the way. For the romance, I would have appreciated one more chapter at the end — it would have been good to hear from Patroclus again, and I never felt like Achilles and Patroclus resolved their mutual secret “you’re going to get tired of me and leave me” issues.

This set up some big pieces for the overall story of the city, but left too much unresolved IMO. There’s a big question about one of the plot pieces that we’re I guess just supposed to accept will be explained in the next book.

Using a golden apple on the cover when Atalanta is in the book but not the love interest is a weird choice for a series devoted to retelling myths, where readers may be familiar with the story of Atalanta’s footrace.

Categories
Fantasy Romance

Re-read Electric Idol

Read Electric Idol (Dark Olympus, #2)

He was the most beautiful man alive. And if I wasn’t careful, he was going to be my death. *A scorchingly hot modern retelling of Psyche…

Was in the mood for a Psyche and Eros story so I revisited this one, which is ~mobster marries the socialite / influencer he’s supposed to kill.

Interesting to read this again while I’ve been reading Lore Olympus online to see how they portray the same characters.

I’m still iffy on the “hero” who is a hitman that kills innocent people because his mother dislikes them — which is compared as being maybe nicer than destroying their reputation or getting them exiled? 🤔 I get it, he’s been emotionally manipulated and controlled since childhood and is basically totally traumatized and disassociative… but he still murdered people so he wouldn’t suffer emotional punishment from his mother? I think this is over the line on a redeemable hero, whereas the hero in Alyssa Cole’s A Hope Divided has been forced to torture people for the war effort and basically escapes it by repeatedly being taken as a POW. They’re both self-loathing but one makes an effort to stop whereas in this book he realizes what he’s become and kinda goes well guess I’m trash 🤷‍♀️

Categories
Fantasy Romance

Read Electric Idol

Read Electric Idol (Dark Olympus, #2)

He was the most beautiful man alive. And if I wasn’t careful, he was going to be my death. *A scorchingly hot modern retelling of Psyche…

This was less risque than the first book, but dark in a different way. The love interest is supposed to kill her. Instead, he suggests they get married. So that’s quite a hurdle to overcome, especially as quickly as they do.

I like how she uses a different type of power to defend herself.

Categories
Fantasy Romance

Read Neon Gods

Read Neon Gods by Katee Robert

Society darling Persephone Dimitriou wants nothing to do with her mother’s ambitions. She’s biding her time until she’s able to leave the ultra-modern city of Olympus and start her doctorate degree. The one thing she never planned on? Her mother ambushing her with an engagement to Zeus—a man with more than a few dead wives in his past. Persephone will do anything to escape that fate…even flee the sparkling upper city and make a devil’s bargain with a man she once believed was a myth.

Hades has spent his life in the shadows, and he has no intention of stepping into the light. Not even for the woman who flees into his territory as if the very hounds of hell are on her heels.

But when he finds that Persephone can offer a little slice of the revenge he’s spent his entire life craving? It’s all the excuse he needs to agree to help her—for a price. She’ll be his for the summer, and then he’ll see her safely out of Olympus and away from her mother and Zeus.

Hades and Persephone’s deal might seem simple enough, but they both quickly realize it’s anything but. With every breathless night spent with Hades, Persephone wonders at her ability to leave him behind. And Hades? Now that he has a taste for Persephone, he’s willing to go to war with Olympus itself to keep her…

Blazed through this in a single sitting. Interesting adaptation of the Hades / Persephone myth in the vein that I enjoy, where Persephone has more agency and actively chooses Hades. I think it worked to have in first person present tense to give it that contemporary feel.

I’m not totally sure about the ending. I think it worked, but I feel like it was so quick that the relief of dramatic stakes maybe needed a little more?

I’m always a little wary of how much kink will be in books with kink, this was not offputting. Some equipment is briefly mentioned but not used by the characters. The kink they follow through on is public sex.