Thursday, June 10, 2010
Divine Misfortune by A. Lee Martinez
Synopsis (from Goodreads): DIVINE MISFORTUNE is a story of gods and mortals---in worship, in love, and at parties.
Teri and Phil had never needed their own personal god. But when Phil is passed up for a promotion - again-it's time to take matters into their own hands. And look online.
Choosing a god isn't as simple as you would think. There are too many choices; and they often have very hefty prices for their eternal devotion: blood, money, sacrifices, and vows of chastity. But then they found Luka, raccoon god of prosperity. All he wants is a small cut of their good fortune.
Oh -- and can he crash on their couch for a few days?
Throw in a heartbroken love goddess and an ancient deity bent on revenge and not even the gods can save Teri and Phil.
My take on it: I found this book to be a fun, light-hearted summer read. I have seen a couple of reviews comparing it to Neil Gaiman's American Gods , but the only thing these books have in common is the idea that the gods are real. In Divine Misfortune, there are made-up or unknown gods like "Luka, god of prosperity and good fortune" -- a raccoon-headed god who likes to be called Lucky. There just isn't the same depth of story that I found in American Gods. That being said, I did enjoy Divine Misfortune. When my husband found it in the bookstore and brought it to me to consider, it looked like a nice, fun, summer read, and that is exactly what it turned out to be. Some of the issues tackled (lightly) are why do humans need to worship a god at all, is everything that happens to humans caused by their god, be careful which god you choose to worship and most importantly, stay out of god politics and relationships - they tend to be jealous and hold grudges. It also seems that you can tell quite a bit about a person just by what kind of god they choose to worship. For example what does it say about a person who chooses a laid back raccoon god who wants to hang out as opposed to a crazy, ancient, chaotic god of death?