Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Review - Elysium Girls by Kate Pentecost




 Title: Elysium Girls

Author: Kate Pentecost

Pages: 400

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Release Date: 14th April 2020


Blurb from Goodreads: 

When a walled city in Oklahoma is used as a chessboard in a battle between gods, Sal must join forces with a powerful desert girl gang to beat Life and Death at their own game.

In this sweeping Dust Bowl-inspired fantasy, a ten-year game between Life and Death pits the walled Oklahoma city of Elysium—including a girl gang of witches and a demon who longs for humanity—against the supernatural in order to judge mankind. When Sal is named Successor to Mother Morevna, a powerful witch and leader of Elysium, she jumps at the chance to prove herself to the town. Ever since she was a kid, Sal has been plagued by false visions of rain, and though people think she's a liar, she knows she's a leader. Even the arrival of enigmatic outsider Asa—a human-obsessed demon in disguise—doesn't shake her confidence in her ability. Until a terrible mistake results in both Sal and Asa's exile into the Desert of Dust and Steel. Face-to-face with a brutal, unforgiving landscape, Sal and Asa join a gang of girls headed by another Elysium exile—and young witch herself—Olivia Rosales. In order to atone for their mistake, they create a cavalry of magic powered, scrap metal horses to save Elysium from the coming apocalypse. But Sal, Asa, and Olivia must do more than simply tip the scales in Elysium's favor—only by reinventing the rules can they beat the Life and Death at their own game.

Goodreads | Amazon UK | Amazon US

My Review:

*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and NetGalley*

Sal lives in Elysium, a walled city surrounded by desert that the gods Life and Death are playing with in a ten-year-long game.

The leader of Elysium is the magic-wielding Mother Morevna. When Sal is named as Mother Morevna's successor, the inhabitants of Elysium go from shunning Sal for her false childhood prophecy of rain, to being more friendly and welcoming.

Then a demon called Asa arrives at Elysium. His presence threatens Sal who is trying to prove herself.

When an accident leads to both Sal and Asa being banished, they find themselves in the desert with few supplies and not long until Life and Death's game is over.

Can Sal and Asa save Elysium?

Who will win the game of the gods?

The premise of Elysium Girls intrigued me - mostly the idea of a walled city being used as a game played between two gods.

Sal was a likeable and relatable protagonist. She was shunned by nearly everyone in Elysium because of visions she'd had as a child, and didn't have any family because her parents were dead. I could definitely understand why Sal felt she had to prove herself so much, even though she shouldn't have had to.

Apart from Sal, my favourite characters were Lucy and Asa who were both likeable.

I liked the mix of magic and the westerny vibes of the setting of Elysium. I also liked that there were different kinds of magic.

The plot was ok, but it failed to hold my attention and I was pretty bored. I found myself skim-reading more than once and did consider DNFing, which I probably should have done because I didn't enjoy what I was reading.

The writing style was ok, but I wasn't invested in what happened.

Unfortunately, this was a book where the concept held promise, but the execution didn't work for me.

I'm disappointed that I didn't enjoy this more.

Overall, this was an ok read.

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