Rated Reads

Gods Behaving Badly

by Marie Phillips

Rated: High

The Greek gods of myth were some wild and crazy folks. They were passionate creatures who were enthusiastic about revenge, wreaking havoc and consorting with humans and causing yet more havoc. So imagine if theses gods were not just around a few thousand years ago, causing problems from their perch on Mount Olympus, but were still hanging around in our world. Marie Phillips imagines 12 of them living together in a rundown London townhouse, bored out of their minds and slowly losing their powers, forced therefore to ration their use. Apollo is working as a TV psychic; Aphrodite is a phone sex operator. Artemis, goddess of the hunt and of chastity, walks dogs for a living.

They generally keep to themselves but after a squabble between Aphrodite and Apollo, a couple of mortals get sucked in to their bizarre world. Neil and Alice, two very ordinary people, have no idea what they’ve run across. And soon, their worlds are turned upside down.

The novel has a very clever premise and has a number of witty moments. It just gets a bit too over the top for me sometimes, and I tend to have a fairly high threshold for over-the-top moments. It also gets quite vulgar and crude — Apollo and Aphrodite aren’t gods of sex for nothing. And the novel isn’t called Gods Behaving Badly for nothing, either.

Rating: High for crude and detailed sex scenes and language. I quit counting at about 25 uses of strong language. There are also a fair number of uses of moderate language.

— Reviewed by Cathy Carmode Lim

Cathy Carmode Lim has been reviewing books for newspapers for more than 20 years, two of which she was a book page editor. She founded Rated Reads in January 2008.

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  • Gods Behaving Badly
  • by Marie Phillips
  • Rated: High
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Reviewer: