Monday, January 24, 2011

Book Review: Artemis the Brave

Artemis's friends and classmates see her as the most courageous goddessgirl at school.  Little do they know that despite her expert archery skills, the smelly Geryon, ring-nosed Minotaurs and scorpions in Beast-ology class scare her as much as they do anyone else!  But what's really bothering her now is that funny feeling she has whenever she looks at Orion.  She's never had a crush before.  Will she find the courage to talk to Orion, to make him see her as more than a pal and to ace Beast-ology class?

Artemis wasn't one of my favorite Goddesses growing up.  She sounded so fierce and scary, plus I'm not really big on hunting.  Like the other Goddess Girl books Holub and Williams give this a twist so that the problems Artemis faces--a first crush, living up to everyone's expectations and family matters--still remain true to the original myth, but have modern sensibilities.

The other Goddess Girls are around, helping Artemis and continuing their own stories.  While its not necessary to have read the previous three books, it doesn't hurt either.  Even though this is Artemis' book, the other girls all have roles to play (just as she did in their books) and a larger understanding of the world is always helpful.

I did find it pretty hilarious that everyone believed Orion to be 'star material' for the very first school play.  Orion, in mythology, was later turned into a constellation by Zeus, so that was an amusing way to include that facet of the myth.  The little toss in about Actaeon, also a nice touch!

The Goddess Girls series continues to be a delightful series.  The positive portrayal of friendship, handling social pressure and class troubles make this a highly recommended series for middle grade girls as well as for teens looking for a light and fun read.