by Astrid Arditi
Hope Diaz has never quite fit in. It's not that she's all that awkward or different; it's just that she has more pressing issues to deal with. Her mother, the only parent she's ever known, is slowly losing her mind, just like her grandmother did years before. It won't be long before Hope's mom isn't able to recognize her own daughter and Hope doesn't want to miss one minute with her beloved mom.
When a strange invitation arrives for her, Hope doesn't know what to make of it. What's weirder is that every single senior high student in New York City seems to have gotten the invite, but no one else around Hope seems to be able to read past "You're cordially invited". Hope sees more but she's not sure if she's really seeing it or if the dementia that affects her mother is starting early in Hope's own mind.
Through a series of events, Hope finds herself transported to Mount Olympus and discovers that she's descended from the heroes and gods of Greek Mythology. These descendants have been brought to Mount Olympus to compete for a chance to be the new Hero and complete a task for the gods.
Now Hope must compete in ten events, each inspired by a different god and hero, in order to win and get one wish. Her wish is obvious; how to win isn't.
Final thoughts: My initial reaction was 4 stars. Then I had time to think things through. I'm dropping my rating to 3 because there are some plot holes here and there. Many of the characters are one-dimensional, which makes sense because of the sheer number of them, but some needed to be fleshed out a bit more. I don't understand Heath's character at all and the chemistry between Hope and Kieron just isn't really there. The Hunger Games aspect was a little distracting, as well. The end was just a little off-kilter and the motivation for the whole event just felt unimportant. So, here I am, wishing there was more and I'm probably going to read the second book, but it's not quite enough to make me enthusiastically endorse this one.
ARC from NetGalley