DRUNK REVIEW: Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips

Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips

Reviewed by GGGinny

What I drank: Mostly beer. Tonight was a d&d night and I decided to have a few drinks while we plotted to save the world.

Goodreads Overview:

Being a Greek god is not all it once was. Yes, the twelve gods of Olympus are alive and well in the twenty-first century, but they are crammed together in a London townhouse–and none too happy about it. And they’ve had to get day jobs: Artemis as a dog-walker, Apollo as a TV psychic, Aphrodite as a phone sex operator, Dionysus as a DJ.

Even more disturbingly, their powers are waning, and even turning mortals into trees–a favorite pastime of Apollo’s–is sapping their vital reserves of strength.

Soon, what begins as a minor squabble between Aphrodite and Apollo escalates into an epic battle of wills. Two perplexed humans, Alice and Neil, who are caught in the crossfire, must fear not only for their own lives, but for the survival of humankind. Nothing less than a true act of heroism is needed-but can these two decidedly ordinary people replicate the feats of the mythical heroes and save the world?

Drunk Overview: So the Greek pantheon has slowly lost their powers and are now living in a London townhouse. And htis goes classic Greek, so they all SUCK. A house-cleaner, Alice gets stuck in the middle and she and her friend who could be more, Neil, end up dealing with the effects the asshole Gods have on their lives.

Drunk Thoughts: The important thing to know is that I recently read through all of Lore Olympus, and LOVED it. So I was looking for more things with the greek pantheon. This didn’t exactly fit the bill of what I was looking for… That being said.

  • I actually enjoyed the fact that the Gods were dicks. I mean, that’s a common theme in actual Greek mythology, that in many cases the Gods were just exaggerated people. Their problems mirrored ours. So it was kind of fun to see them at their pettiest.
  • Fuck Apollo.
  • Clearly, most of the characters were gods which means a lot of their character is a little out of the bounds of normal, yet I liked those characters the most when they were acting most like their archetype – Aphrodite was at her best when she was vain an lusty (sidenote, her job was as a phone sex operator and what a perfect pair that made) the moment I struggled with the most were when the characters were made to act outside of their archetype…
  • Meanwhile Alice and Neil were like the blandest possible human beings.
  • I get why they needed to be for this story (with personalities as big as the gods, you kind of need a blank canvas to go off of), and while I think the iffy-ness of their relationship really worked for this, I really wish either of them had even a little bit more personality.
  • I did struggle with the plot a little bit. I have to admit, it did link together pretty well: X decides to get revenge on Y by enacting some curse, and then Y overreacts and blah blah blah death of a human.
  • But this gets to the point where I would expect that the gods were slightly more omniscient than they were here… that being said, even in mythology the gods wouldn’t realize when they had been hoodwinked by another god, so maybe I’m splitting hairs.
  • I did like the description of hell (sorry, not really a spoiler, I mean, I mentioned someone died earlier) and the hierarchies within.
  • I’m going to be honest, the trip to the underworld was probably the best part of the book. I think the narrow focus, and a world where the miraculous felt more possible, made the rest of the book feel wanting.
  • Although that does lead to some of the more colorful interactions between the gods.
  • Minor spoiler, but I loved the fact that Athena was crazy smart but bad at communicating with the other gods. It reminded me of a TA I had in a science class who made the easiest assignments improssible to understand
  • The ending felt a little “Clap if you believe in fairies” but I’m not sure the book could have ended in any other way.
  • But still, the best I can say about this book is that I feel lukewarm about it. There’s something about petty squabbles when you have, like, 12 people living in a house that feels sadder than when they’re apparently ineffable gods on high.
  • Also the epilogue felt very frustrating.
  • I think I was hoping for either a slightly grander world in which this took place, or a more interesting dynaimc between the gods.

What it Pairs With: Ambrosia? But really this book would pair really well with a bottle of wine aged approximately 2 years. Ideally one of the weird ones where the wine comes from orange blossoms or something instead of grapes

Rating: 2.5/5

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