An exiled goddess goes on a quest to clear her name and save Mount Olympus in Talia Rothschild & A C Harvey's action-packed young adult debut, The Immortal Game! Galene, daughter of Poseidon, desperately wants to earn her place among the gods. But when a violent attack leaves Mount Olympus in chaos and ruins, she is accused of the crime. Banished from Olympus, Galene sets out to prove her innocence and discovers a more deadly plot―one that threatens even the oldest of Immortals. Fortunately, she has allies who willingly join her in exile: A lifelong friend who commands the wind. A defiant warrior with deadly skill. A fire-wielder with a hero’s heart. A mastermind who plays life like a game. All-out war is knocking at the gates. Galene and her friends are the only ones who can tip the scales toward justice, but their choices could save Olympus from total annihilation, or be the doom of them all.
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After she fails, monsters are unleashed on Olympus, and she is blamed for the chaos that follows. Although innocent, the sentencing of the gods is swift, and Galene is exiled, never to become an immortal nor see her family and friends on Olympus again. Her BFF, Iyana, daughter of Zeus, chooses to go into exile with her, believing in her innocence and is joined by her boyfriend, Demitri, who is ready to take a stand against Olympian injustice.
Without anywhere else to go, they seek out Galene's brother who betrayed Olympus and has been determined to overthrow the regime with the help of vengeful, exiled gods and goddesses. Once there, they learn of new plots that set them on quests they could never have imagined - with the help of their other friends, Kostas and Braxtos.
What I loved: This plot was so imaginative, and I loved the mythology and questing elements throughout. The story moves quickly, and the writing is action-packed with everything moving the story forward. I appreciated the surprising twists that are scattered throughout. The book is also told through the perspective of multiple characters, but it manages to be easy to follow and gives the story a lot of dimensionality. The riddles, quests, beasts, and games were all very imaginative, and the world-building was strong.
What left me wanting more: As a small point, I did want some more lead up to the romance. The action took up a lot of space, so the romance seemed to come as a bit of a surprise at the end (for Galene). In that way, it could have been fun to immerse more fully in a couple characters to get more of the inner dialogue.
Final verdict: Imaginative, action-packed, and full of mythology, THE IMMORTAL GAME is a strong YA fantasy/adventure read that will appeal to fans of LORE and Percy Jackson.