Book Review: Goddess in the Machine by Lora Beth Johnson
Goddess in the Machine
Series: Goddess in the Machine #1
Author: Lora Beth Johnson
Published: June 30, 2020
Reviewed By: Jessica
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
Dates Read: September 27-October 12, 2020
When Andra wakes up, she’s drowning.
Not only that, but she’s in a hot, dirty cave, it’s the year 3102, and everyone keeps calling her Goddess. When Andra went into a cryonic sleep for a trip across the galaxy, she expected to wake up in a hundred years, not a thousand. Worst of all, the rest of the colonists—including her family and friends—are dead. They died centuries ago, and for some reason, their descendants think Andra’s a deity. She knows she’s nothing special, but she’ll play along if it means she can figure out why she was left in stasis and how to get back to Earth.
Zhade, the exiled bastard prince of Eerensed, has other plans. Four years ago, the sleeping Goddess’s glass coffin disappeared from the palace, and Zhade devoted himself to finding it. Now he’s hoping the Goddess will be the key to taking his rightful place on the throne—if he can get her to play her part, that is. Because if his people realize she doesn’t actually have the power to save their dying planet, they’ll kill her.
With a vicious monarch on the throne and a city tearing apart at the seams, Zhade and Andra might never be able to unlock the mystery of her fate, let alone find a way to unseat the king, especially since Zhade hasn’t exactly been forthcoming with Andra. And a thousand years from home, is there any way of knowing that Earth is better than the planet she’s woken to?
It is rare that I read a sci-fi novel, but the book description sounded intriguing to me, so I decided to read (well listen) to it: And Goddess in the Machine is a LONG one coming in at a 15 hour narration!
I was really only interested in Andra’s unique situation, and Zhade’s storyline did not interest me at all. I could care less that he is the bastard son and his whole situation. Part of my problem with Zhade’s perspective in the novel is the linguistics of the people in the year 3102. It is easy to ‘catch on’ with the way they speak; it just did not work for me. I think I benefited listening to the audiobook because of this versus having actually read the book. I think if I had tried to read it that I might have DNF’d it. I give props to Johnson for coming up with an ‘updated English language’ as this must have taken some time and effort to come up with. This is also her first novel, so bravo for doing something different language wise.
I did not really like Zhade with him using Andra for his own benefit. Though I do like how his name is pronounced in the audiobook. I did really like Andra (her name is short for Andromeda.) She is an average, normal teenager thrown into the most unexpected and unusual situation and having to try and struggle to survive in a new world and time with everything unfamiliar.
There are twists that come up throughout the novel that I would have never seen coming in 1000 years. As the ending of the novel creeps closer, we get more twists which was setting up for the second novel, which I need NOW! My husband heard a little of the audiobook as we were driving one day and he ended up reading and enjoying Goddess himself, though he did figure out the twists that I didn’t. That could be that he is more of a sci-fi reader/ watcher. He is not a reviewer but he said he would have given it 4 stars.
For a novel that is outside of my ‘comfort zone’ 4 stars is a very strong review from me! I would recommend this one to those who enjoy sci-fi and maybe those not so into sci-fi.