A Touch of Ruin: 2 (Hades X Persephone)
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It says here there are eight heroes competing,” said Leuce, looking at her phone. The glow made her eyes spark. “Three women and four men.” My feelings are mixed on this book, as well, and my rating is definitely sitting at about 3.5 immediately after reading it. This might change. To be honest, I don't ship these two or enjoy their romance as much as I used to. Sure, I don't want them to break up either, especially considering that a rogue love triangle will probably spring out of hell, the likes of which I don't have the braincells to deal with they're married and whatnot now, but I'm not as invested or even interested as I used to be.
The two star rating has nothing to do with the numerous spelling/grammatical mistakes on the Kindle version that I read. Turns out that Theseus is trying to overturn the old gods and somehow harness their power to become/create new gods?? And he needs the gods' divine weapons to that - Hera and Demeter are already on his side, along with his father, Poseidon. He now needs Persephone's help to get Hades' weapon - the Helm of Darkness.To get there, they travel across Lake Lerna, where they encounter Ceto, who is engaged by Demeter. The two fight for a while before Persephone gets everyone to calm down and let them onto the shore so that they can enter the Underworld/vault. The worst thing about this novel is how disconnected the storyline feels. It’s difficult to determine what the through-line of this book is because there are so many subplots. In addition to the sporadic nature of the story, there is also some filler content that makes the story more disorganized.
CHAPTER II - A TOUCH OF DUPLICITY Persephone’s body vibrated, warmed from the spark Hades had ignited. Without supervision, the flame had spread, consuming her whole body. She sought a distraction and wandered outside where she walked through the garden, consumed by the smell of damp soil and sweet blossoms. She caressed petals and leaves as she passed until she came to the edge of the plot where a wild field of yellowing grass danced, encouraged by a whispered breezed. She took off at a run, orange flowers bloomed at her feet as she sailed across the field. She didn’t have to focus on using her magic. It radiated from her, unfiltered and uncontrolled. Hades’ Dobermans joined her, chasing each other until she came to a halt at the edge of Hecate’s meadow. The goddess sat cross- legged outside her cottage with her eyes closed. Persephone wasn’t sure if she was meditating or casting a spell. If Persephone had to guess, she’d say the Goddess of Witchcraft was probably cursing some mortal in the Upperworld for some heinous deed against women. Cerberus, Typhon, and Orthrus did not follow Persephone as she approached the goddess. “Sated already?” Hecate asked, her eyes were still closed. Persephone would never forgive Hades for what had gone down in front of his staff. “Does it look like it?” she grumbled. She was a wARRIOR IN CHARGE OF PROTECTING PERSEPHONE??? SHE'S LITERALLY HANDLED WORSE BEFORE??? IN WHAT UNIVERSE COULD SHE JUST DROP DEAD??? NOT TO MENTION THE FACT THAT SHE'S A PRETTY IMPORTANT CHARACTER AND PROBABLY DESERVED BETTER???
In addition to a developing relationship between Persephone and Hades, Persephone also learns and interacts more with the underworld. As the series progresses, Persephone is beginning to break out of her role as the sheltered daughter of Demeter and pave her own path. On that path, there are a lot of learning curves about the nature of life and death. Weaknesses
I was expecting that this book would at least answer some of the questions that ending brought about, and maybe even bring the plot forward some, properly introducing us to some of the other Greek gods and goddesses, paving the way for a proper conflict. To be honest, I think part of this is my own fault here. I started this series knowing that it was going to be pretty trashy, but at least in the beginning, it was enjoyable trash. The first book, in particular, wasn't very plot-based, and instead placed some emphasis on Persephone and Hades' relationship. The second book similarly so.
The gods fight, but it's absolutely incoherent. I can't even describe what happened because it was pure chaos. Someone's throwing swords at someone else, Persephone is growing vines over people, buildings are being destroyed, and the writing isn't exactly detailed. However, I do appreciate that Hades’ sidelining in this gave more space for the side characters we haven’t learned much of to exist in this story. I loved Apollo and of course, Hermes. I might be more invested in Aphrodite and Hephaestus at this point, than I am Hades and Persephone.