Wednesday, 6 February 2013

What I've Been Reading:
'Cora: The Unwilling Queen' by Amy Hutchinson

*I won a free copy of this book on*
I've always loved the myth of Persephone and Hades. There's just something about having to spend half your life in the confines of the Underworld that seriously creeps me out.

In her debut novel 'Cora: The Unwilling Queen', Amy Hutchinson takes Persephone's story and re-imagines it, casting in Persephone's place everyday teenager Cora.

Cora has been having these dreams. Really strange dreams that she struggles to remember when she awakes. Dreams that enable her to take possessions in and out of her dream world. And that's seriously not normal, right? As the dreams get stranger and stranger, causing her to collapse into a deep sleep each night at midnight and dream about a handsome stranger who wants her to be his bride, Cora turns to her best friends, in the hope that they can help her solve the mystery of the dreams before it's too late.

This book sucked me in and had me hooked until the very last line. The story was utterly compelling and the story flicked back and forth between Cora's waking life and dream world seamlessly. The dream sequences didn't have any of the awkwardness that they seem to possess in other novels. It really felt natural to slip into Cora's dreams with her and sneak out upon her waking. 

As a heroine, Cora was perfect. She didn't have any of that annoying woe-is-me stuff going on that I loath in teenage protagonists. Instead, she was a strong, crafty survivor who made the most of her situation and didn't rely on others to rescue her. 

I'm anxiously awaiting the sequel and can't wait to see where Cora's adventure leads. I'd recommend this novel to anyone who likes strong female characters and a plot that gives a contemporary take on myth.

Rating: 4/5

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