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With ambitious worldbuilding and breakneck pacing, Bracken’s (the Passenger series) standalone novel blends Greek mythology and modern-day Manhattan. After her family is brutally murdered, Melora Perseous, known as Lore, is the last of the mortal Perseides. Training in New York City as an underground fighter, Lore lives undetected from those who seek her family’s shield, the aegis, which is “the envy of all the other bloodlines.” When the Agon occurs — the seven days every seven years when gods can be murdered for their powers — Lore is thrust into a world she would rather avoid, taking friend Miles and childhood pal Castor, now Apollo, with her. Teaming up with Athena to thwart a wrathful villain intent on killing off the gods, Lore balances achieving her destiny — kleos, or legendary honor—with mourning her family. Employing crafty nods to ancient epics (“Seven years stretched between them like the wine-dark sea”) alongside gritty action sequences and violence, including sexual assault, Bracken cuts tense moments with Lore’s backstory, told in illuminating flashbacks. With its inventive combinations of technology and magic, Bracken’s lively take on Greek mythology is an entertaining joyride
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