Monday, February 13, 2012

Pandora's Key - by Nancy Richardson Fischer

This review is by Stephanie Cowart

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The key to saving the world hangs from her neck…
Sixteen-year-old Evangeline Theopolis doesn’t know her father, her mother is having delusions, and her godmother is, at the very least, a murderer. A clandestine Order called the Archivists is trying to find and kill her for a magical talisman she believes is just a necklace with an antique key charm. And an ancient and lethal female Sect is bent on kidnapping her.
To fight her deadly adversaries Evangeline is forced to use both her wits and the supernatural talents she never imagined she possessed. Her journey takes her to the steps of Mount Olympus where she will discover her true identity and have a decision to make: accept who she really is or take responsibility for the destruction of the world.

First of all – what about that cover? The cover is just gorgeous! Even my kids kept commenting about the “beautiful eyes inside the butterfly”!

This story relies heavily on Greek mythology and if you’re anything like me and know nothing about it, don’t fret. There’s a great prologue that not only gives a pertinent overview for the purposes of the story, but it also piqued my interest in Greek mythology. Not sure why I didn’t study it more in high school/college but it definitely looks interesting.

I really enjoyed the book. It is fast-paced and interesting. Evangeline is a great character. I’ve made it clear in the past that sometimes teen characters can get really annoying for me. I thought Evangeline had the perfect blend of teenage realism with enough maturity to be able to handle her difficult circumstances. She rises to each challenge she’s presented with even though it’s all so very difficult for her to believe. Her life quickly becomes chaos, and I liked the strength that her character displayed.

There are a lot of characters in this book. It felt like we were introduced to new people almost every other chapter. While this definitely kept the pace of the book fast, I was disappointed that some characters didn’t get as much backstory and attention. A couple of the big reveals about the characters didn’t seem as real to me because I hadn’t had time to explore them and get to know them better. That being said, this book is the first in the trilogy so I know that several characters will get more in-depth exploration in books 2 and 3.

The twists and turns of the book kept me interested and yet the plot stayed true to its basis in the mythological story of Pandora. I really enjoyed it and am excited to read book 2 – The Key to Tartarus.

Check out her website at for more information on this book and the other books in The Key Trilogy.

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