Authors: Joan Holub & Suzanne Williams
Year published: 2010
Number of pages: 160
Recommended age: 6+
Daughter Rating: ★★★★★
Grown-up Rating: ★★★★★
Reviewed by: Renee and Danielle (Mother and Daughter)
Summary (from Amazon): Athena always knew she was smart and special, but she didn’t realize that she was a goddess! When she’s whisked away to Mount Olympus Academy, she worries about fitting in and dealing with her dad—who just happens to be Zeus. Luckily, she meets the Goddess Girls—and finds the best friends she’s ever had.
What it’s about: This book is about a girl named Athena who discovers that she is a goddess! She is the daughter of Zeus (the thunder bolt man.) Then she finds herself on Mount Olympus at Mount Olympus Academy where she meets some of the other goddesses like Artemis, Aphrodite and mortals like Pandora and the mean girl – Medusa.
What I liked and disliked about it: I liked the story. I liked that the pages were short and it was a fast and easy read for me. The girls in the book reminded me of me and my friends. Some of us get along and sometimes one girl can be mean (but only sometimes).
I liked the part of where they were doing the project and Athena kept hurting the person that she was doing experiments with. That was a really cool class project! There were lots of funny parts like that one. I liked that Poseidon wanted to name his trident after gum – that was funny.
I would have liked it if there were pictures of Medusa before she got her snake hair and I wish there was more information about what happens after Medusa got turned into stone.
My bottom line: I loved loved loved this book and I want to read the other books in the series. I would recommend it to girls 7 years and older.
What it’s about: This book introduces us to Athena, one of the Greek goddesses in her youth, just as she learns that she is the daughter of Zeus. Athena gets taken up to Mount Olympus where she attends the Mount Olympus Academy with other young gods and goddesses such as Aphrodite, Poseidon, and Persephone as well as some mortals such as Medusa and Pandora. Will Athena finally find a place to fit in? Or will she come up against one of the most notorious bad girls in history?
What I liked and disliked about it: You’ve all heard me ramble on about my love of mythology (especially Greek mythology) – – most recently in our review of the first book in the Heroes in Training series (Zeus and the Thunderbolt of Doom), also by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams. The Goddess Girls is written for tween girls and the dialogue and relationships among the characters is depicted in an almost eerily accurate way (this coming from the Mom of a tween – or near-tween depending on when you start labeling a person a “tween”). Tween girls will be able to relate to likable Athena who feels different and awkward from everyone else while juggling homework, making new friends, meeting her father for the first time, and contending with the school bullies.
I really enjoyed Holub and William’s vision of Mount Olympus Academy where all the young Gods and Goddesses attend classes such as Hero-ology, Spell-ology, Revenge-ology, and Beauty-ology. It is in the Hero-ology class that the young Gods and Goddesses hone their skills in manipulating some famous mortals on Earth such as Paris and Helen of Troy, King Menelaus of Sparta, and the Greek hero Odysseus whom Athena humorously mishandles and nearly drowns by accident. The authors’ description of the in-fighting amongst the Gods and Goddesses over their class assignment as puppeteers to the mortals on Earth was very amusing.
The book cover is very eye-catching. In fact, my daughter and I originally came across this series in Chapters/Indigo bookstore many months ago while perusing the bookshelves. The images of Medusa in books and movies are generally very frightening, but in this series, she is depicted as normally described, (i.e., green skin, snakes for hair) but is more cartoon-like than scary. Unlike the Heroes in Training books, this book does not have any illustrations inside the book. That worked out ok because the main characters are well-depicted on the cover and the word density in the book is low so there is no need for images to break up the text.
I was curious to see, having read Zeus and the Thunderbolt of Doom first, how the Goddess Girls would overlap with the Heroes in Training series. Interestingly, they do not overlap. I would have expected that they might, but it does not take away from the enjoyment of either series.
My bottom line: Many of the same things I loved about the Heroes in Training series (i.e., likable characters, comedic timing, quirkiness and originality, an interesting plot, and a unique and playful writing style) all apply here as well. I would highly recommend the Goddess Girl books to tween girls – they’ll love it!
* Book Blast: Goddess Girls: Pandora the Curious *
If you liked our review of Goddess Girls: Athena the Brain, pop on over for a sneak peek of the NINTH book in the Goddess Girls series – Pandora the Curious – as well as a GIVEAWAY for a $100 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.
Where to Buy?
Goddess Girl Books #1 to #4. Includes a charm bracelet.
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