"The Goddess Test" by Aimee Carter is the first book in a new series, due to be released April 19, 2011. I had the privilege of reading an advanced copy and I'm telling you, go ahead and pre-order this book. You will thank me later.
This book is YA paranormal romance meets Greek Mythology and centers around a character named Kate, whose mother who is dying of cancer. The mother's dying wish is to return to her childhood hometown where she plans to be buried and has hopes that afterward Kate will stay and make a life of herself there.
While a home health nurse cares for her mother, Kate enrolls in the local high school and makes some new friends. But are her friends all they seem to be? After a horrible prank is played on her, Kate is faced with the choice of getting even, or forgiving and doing the right thing, which earns her the attention of the mysterious Henry. Kate desperately needs his help. Henry asks Kate if she's familiar with the story of Persephone, and makes a deal with Kate that she feels she can't refuse. He will help her, if she agrees to stay with Henry for 6 months and endure a series of "tests".
Kate is also Henry's last chance. If Kate does not take the deal and she leaves him, he will fade away. However, if Kate chooses to stay with Henry, she will get more time with her dying mother and a chance to say goodbye on her own terms. If she passes the tests, she becomes immortal, and Henry's wife. If she fails, she is told she will be allowed to leave, and her memory of this time will be erased. No harm in trying, right? But someone neglected to inform her that the previous mortal girls who attempted immortality ended up dead. Someone on the inside is doing their best to keep these girls from succeeding.
Who can she trust? Will Kate pass all the tests? And should she allow herself to fall in love with Henry, knowing if she fails even one test, she will be be sent on her merry way with a freshly wiped memory? Does Henry dare open his broken heart to love once more, knowing what's at stake?
I read this entire book in one day. I simply could not put it down. It captured my attention from the beginning of the prologue and I found myself wishing this book would never end. It was filled with unexpected twists and turns. I'm a compulsive reader, and this is one of the most enjoyable books I've read in a while. I cannot wait for the sequel. Even though I've read it, I pre-ordered this book so I can read it again and again.