Title: Curse of the Sphinx
Author: Raye Wagner
Genre: Action Suspense Romance
Seventeen year-old Hope Nicholas has spent her entire life on the run. But no one is chasing her. In fact, no one even knows she exists. With her mom, she’s traveled from town to town and school to school, barely staying long enough to meet anyone, let alone make friends. And she’ll have to keep it that way. It’s safer.
When her mother is brutally ripped away from her, Hope’s life shatters. Is this the fulfillment of Apollo’s curse, murder from the shadow monsters of the Underworld, or have the demigods finally found her? Orphaned and alone, Hope flees again, but this time there’s no one to teach her who to trust—or how to love.
Set in a universe where mythology is alive and well in the modern world, Curse of the Sphinx irresistibly blends action, suspense and romance.
Mythology at its finest. Curse of the Sphinx is an entertaining read that involves gods, demigods, and immortals. A forbidden young love is created between two unknowing individuals until it’s too late. The story revolves around a girl by the name of Hope who has experienced a very secluded life with lots of loss.
Hope and her mother, Leto have been on the move, never staying in place for too long. Leto has given Hope very strict guidelines to live by and with moving around it helps to ensure them. Never make friends, keep to yourself, and never ever fall in love. Leto and Hope are living with a family curse brought on by the god, Apollo. They are curse to become a Sphinx. If the sphinx falls in love resulting in marriage the curse has been fulfilled and Apollo kills the Sphinx because the woman can only love him or his offspring.
Leto has married a man and Apollo comes to collect by sending Leto to Hades in the underworld. What no one knew was that she had a daughter, Hope. Now it is Apollo’s mission to find the Sphinx, but Apollo isn’t the only one after her. Hermes is set to anger Apollo and he sends his son, Athen to find her first…and he does. Except not only does he unknowingly find her, he falls in love with her.
Slowly, Hope and Athen put clues together determining that each other are some sort of immortal or demigod, but it’s not until Athen demands for Hope to confess what she is to him when he seems a mark only a immortal can live with. It’s here in an emotional argument that he stumbles upon the sacred book that details the lives of each sphinx that he figures out that he’s been on the hunt for her. Hope on the other hand has been taught nothing but to run, because everyone kills monsters…everyone will kill a sphinx.
Hope isn’t one for trusting, but somehow she trusts Athen. He claims that he won’t give her up to his father. That he won’t let anyone hurt her. But his father tells him to let her go, because if Apollo finds out that he’s in love with ‘his’ sphinx, he’ll kill him.
To make matters worse Hades wants in on the hunting game as well. He sends his minions, Skia to track her down and gather information about her. And they can’t help but to kill all other demigods that they come across along the way. It’s from the occasional appearances of Skia that Athen figures out that Hope isn’t mortal because only immortals or demigods can see Skia.
The story ends open with what I can assume Hope overhearing Athen talk with his father about how he’s in love the sphinx and his father replying to break off ties with her or else he’s dead at the hands of Apollo. Also, I can assume that the three young blonde boys that show up in town are Apollo’s sons who are hunting for Hope as well.
The characters are well developed. Hope acts like any teenager that wants to do things, but has an overbearing parent. Athen seemed a little sleazy, because he made his rounds of girls within the first week of school before settling on Hope. However, the relationship between the two is very realistic and believable. The tension as a reader waiting for Athen to find Hope was exciting. And once they found out who each other were it was even more suspenseful.
A few things that bothered me were the fact that every school she moved too, which were very small towns had a Mythology course. Maybe it was just the state that the story takes place, but where I live Mythology is not a required course. Another thing is how the ‘mortals’ in the story are carefree about there being demigods among them. I know if I were to find out that demigods were real I would be a little ecstatic and not so laid back. Then there is the fact that the ‘mortal’ students would make references about the gods. Oh Hades…no normal teenager that isn’t a demigod or immortal would say oh Hades, they would say oh hell.
Despite some minor things that bothered me, it was a very entertaining novel. A little slow in the beginning but the pace quickened towards the middle…like every novel does. Absolutely will be looking out for book two!