Sunday, 22 August 2010

Gods Behaving Badly

by Marie Phillips

A couple of times recently, I've been forcing myself to keep reading a book. They've been good books, but I've been reading them as a duty rather than a pleasure.

BANG. Not this time. BANG.

It's fun to shout BANG.

Gods Behaving Badly is a pleasant, funny and completely easy read. I think there was less than two days between the first page and the last, though I was never at more than a leisurely pace, and generally getting on with other things in my life.

It's a debut novel, as well. Just thought I'd throw that out there. I've started to associate the ability to make reading easier with old masters, but Marie Phillips cracks it aged 31.

The book itself is a sexier, less clever Tom Holt effort. Meek, nice and useless main characters have to overcome powerful, clever bastards; classic myths in ingloriously modern contexts provide the funnies; yet you don't need a classics degree to enjoy it.

More could be made of everything. That's the flipside to a light novel. The Gods are saved by rat-faced Neil, when he points out the obvious (to anybody who's ever read Pratchett) idea that their power is drawn from people's belief in them. The fact the Gods don't realise this themselves could be a really telling insight into their narcissism and cattle-like view of mortals. Instead, it passes by without comment.

There's many such moments, and they would have bothered me if I was in a nother mood. But with my hopes firmly set on a chilled out pleasure-read, I secretly hurrah'd every time Phillips glossed by them to make a joke about Aphrodite (pictured) working on a sex line.

A note on my Summer Of Strangers. There's only two books left on my TBR list that qualify (by being authors I've never read before). I will class the end of summer, and therefore SOS, as when I've read those two. Expect a full review of the process after that, and then a month or so of catching up with the excellent authors I have been holding back on for ages.


  1. I have had that same trouble with some recent books (having to force myself to read them, even though they're good). It is always such a welcome change when you find that BANG!

  2. I've been struggling through the same three books for a few weeks now. Glad you had your BANG moment with such an awesome sounding book

  3. Hey there! Just hopping by! If you have a chance, stop by The Wormhole and check out my 300 follower giveaway! Happy reading – have a great weekend!

  4. I no longer force myself to read things I don't like - life is too short!

    Glad to have found you through the Hop!