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Gods Behaving Badly- Review

August 16, 2010

Gods Behaving Badly
Marie Phillips
Back Bay Books, paperback $13.99 310 pages

The Greek gods are still with us. And crammed into a dilapidated flat in London. They squabble, have sex, have revenge, and have tried to adjust to 21st century life with varying degrees of success. Artemis is a dogwalker. Aphrodite runs a phone sex business. Eros has discovered Christianity and morality, much to his mother’s dismay. Demeter works in the garden. Apollo’s launching a talk show.

One thing they’ve all noticed- their powers certainly aren’t what they used to be on Olympus. Their powers might be… running out. Which means that they have to resort to the aforementioned squabbling and grudges, just like, well, badly behaved people. An analogy to “Real World: Mount Olympus” wouldn’t be misplaced.

Enter the adorable, painfully shy mortals, Neil and Alice, attending Apollo’s talk show. A grudge gone wrong and then more wrong, an arrow to the heart, and an unfortunate camera angle means that Apollo’s television career is doomed. And Alice has a new gig, cleaning house for the dysfunctional crew of gods.

I loved this book. I started reading it at the book swap, and was giggling (and blushing, did I mention Aphrodite’s job!) almost immediately. The idea of Greek gods living in London and giving each other grief is funny enough. But the whole narrative is infused with a wonderfully droll, and, well, British sense of humor. It reminded me of Good Omens in all the best possible ways. Only with more overt raunch. It was terrific, somewhat fluffy, fun. Great stuff!

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