Sunday, 10 July 2011

Goddess of Spring by P.C. Cast

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus Books (28 Jan 2011)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 0749953713
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749953713

Can a middle aged baker be the soulmate of a God?

Lina's trendy bakery in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is proving to be less than lucrative and she must come up with a plan to save it. When she stumbles upon an Italian Goddess cookbook, she can't help but think she's found the answer to her problem - even if it means invoking a goddess to save her business. Soon enough, Lina finds herself face-to-face with Demeter, who has a plan of her own. She proposes that Lina exchange souls with Persephone, the Goddess of Spring, who will breathe new life into the bakery. In return, Lina must set order to the Underworld. Before all this, Lina's problems mostly involved dough and second dates. Now that she embodies the enchantingly beautiful Persephone, Lina has weightier things on her mind - like the formidable task of bringing Spring to a world of spirits. But when the handsome, brooding Hades kindles a spark in her heart, Lina wonders if this Lord of the Underworld might be the man of her dreams...

Book 2 in P.C. Cast's Goddess Summoning Series.  While they are a series, each is a stand alone novel so you can just pick and choose which you want to read in which ever order. So I started with Goddess of Spring because the myth of 

Reading Order:

Goddess of the Sea
Goddess of Spring
Goddess of Light
Goddess of the Rose
Goddess of Love
Goddess of Troy (Previously released as Warrior Rising)
Goddess of Legend

Original US cover
Cover:  I have the re-released UK covers of the whole series and they are much better than the previous covers.

Plot: This series is all about re-working classic myths and legends and adding a modern twist.  Persephone's mother feels she is too frivolous and needs to learn to be more responsible, so she switches her daughter's soul with the of Carolina, a middle ages baker from Tulsa.  Persephone is now in Lena's body and vice versa.  
Persephone must bring new life to Lena's struggling bakery and Lena must bring comfort to an Underworld that have long been without the comfort provided by a Goddess. This means encountering Hades, God of the Underworld. At first Hades thinks Persephone will be as selfish and frivolous as all the other Gods and Goddesses he has known but seeing her care for his realm and the spirits except her, he soon sees otherwise and can she care for him as she does his realm?
This book raises the question is it the body or the soul that loves?


Carolina (Lena)- Middle ages baker from Tulsa.  Has always had a gift in which are animals are drawn to her, even Hades steed.  Generally an all round wise and kind mortal woman.

Hades- Dark and broodingly handsome, the God of the Underworld stands out from the other Gods because he doesn't care for casual affairs or flings but rather longs to find his soulmate.

Persephone- We don't see much of Persephone as the story's focus is on the romance between Hades and Lena (Hades doesn't know that it isn't Persephone but Lena's soul in her body).

Eurydice- A young spirit new to the underworld that Lena takes under her wing.

Writing Style: 
Very detailed descriptions provide a very vivid image of the settings but it was a little slow to get into, but once past the first 80 or so pages it seemed to flow much better.

Rating: 3.5/5 stars.  I really loved how P.C. Cast put a twist on the well known myth of Hades and Persephone and it worked really well.  The romance and interaction between Hades and Lena was the strength of the book and I loved them both but the pacing issues at the start let it down a tad for me.  
I recommend this for fans of P.C. Cast that are familiar with her writing style or for those that love greek mythology.  This series is for slightly older readers as it tends to be quite explicit and the more mature main female character may not appeal to all readers used to reading about younger heroines.

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