Wednesday 16 January 2013

Blog Tour -- Guest Post + Review: The Gatekeeper's Challenge by Eva Pohler

The Gatekeeper's Challenge (The Gatekeeper's Trilogy, #2)Title: The Gatekeeper's Challenge
Author: Eva Pohler
Series: The Gatekeeper's Trilogy (2)
Publisher: Green Press
Release Date: 13 August 2012

Ten agonizing months have gone by since Therese faced off against her parents’ murderer at Mount Olympus, and she suspects Thanatos’s absence is meant to send her a message: go on with your life. She tries to return Pete’s affections even though her heart aches for the god of death, but when Than shows up to take her hamster’s soul, she becomes infuriated when he says he’s “been busy.” In cahoots with her new friend, who's gotten in with the Demon Druggies at school, Therese takes a drug that simulates a near-death experience, planning to tell Than off so she can have closure and move on, but things go very, very wrong.

Eventually she learns Than has been busy searching for a way to make her a god, and he’s found it, but it requires her to complete a set of impossible challenges designed by Hades, who hopes to see her fail.

Also in the Series

The Gatekeeper's Son (1)
The Gatekeeper's Sons (Gatekeeper's Trilogy, #1)Fifteen-year-old Therese watches her parents die. While in a coma, she meets the twin sons of Hades—Hypnos, the god of sleep, and Thanatos, the god of death. She thinks she's manipulating a dream, not kissing the god of death and totally rocking his world. 

Than makes a deal with Hades and goes as a mortal to the Upperworld to try and win Therese's heart, but not all the gods are happy. Some give her gifts. Others try to kill her. 

The deal requires Therese to avenge the death of her parents. With the help of Than’s fierce and exotic sisters, the Furies, she finds herself in an arena face to face with the murderer, and only one will survive.

Not many myth-based novel even mention Thanatos or Hypnos so I pleasantly welcomed the change in characters, regarding Greek gods. I would have liked to see Hypnos have a bigger presence in the novel since it is called Gatekeeper's 'Sons'. But I suppose we got the more interesting brother since I suspect Hypnos' personality would have bored before too long and at least it wasn't about the brothers fighting for Therese's love. Thank goodness. The premise itself is interesting as I haven't really heard much of gods wanting to turn humans into gods.

Therese is athletic, great with animals, a lucid dreamer, have musical abilities to awe the gods and goddesses themselves, nice to everyone and just perfect. Not so perfect though that she certainly made more than enough idiotic decisions. She cries a lot, too. Therese is the object of Thanatos' affection. I wasn't a fan of the romance, honestly. It was an insta-love and it felt too constrained, mostly because of the dialogue. But at least they didn't jump the gun on the whole running away and being with each other for all of eternity too soon.

Pohler certainly took her own spin on the mythology of the story, focusing more on the myths and characters surrounding the Underworld. I didn't agree with how some of the gods and goddesses were portrayed but that's just my own personal taste. There were also some technical mythology parts that seemed a bit iffy to me (like Hercules being the Greek's favourite hero) but with something as timeless as the Greek myths, many interpretations and variations have been made. Pohler adds herself on that list by taking classic characters and settings and adding her own twist to it.

Guest Post

Ifell in love with Greek myths in the eighth grade, when I read Edith Hamilton’sMythology. Later, after studying CarlJung and Sigmund Freud, I better understood why most people are drawn to myths:They help us to project and symbolically play out our own fears and desires.Carl Jung wrote of universal archetypes—such as the Madonna, the soldier, andthe rogue. Sigmund Freud wrote that art was the opportunity for adults tocontinue childhood play in a socially acceptable way. Joseph Campbell builtupon the works of both Jung and Freud to describe The Hero with a Thousand Faces, which inspired George Lukas in thecreation of Star Wars.

Asa writer, I, like Lukas, wished to tap into that universal consciousness wherefears and desires are shared. Myths make it possible to project universalfears, or what we often call our inner demons, into monsters that can beexternally fought and defeated. The most universal fear is death. I created atrilogy for young adults in which death is not only faced and, in some ways,battled, but also embraced and transcended.

Inthe first book of this contemporary fantasy, The Gatekeeper’s Sons, fifteen-year-old Therese Mills meetsThanatos, the god of death, while in a coma after witnessing her parents’murder. She feels like the least powerful person on the planet and is ready togive up on life, but the story forces her to fight. As she hunts with thefierce and beautiful Furies to track down her parents’ murder and avenge theirdeath, she falls in love with Thanatos and symbolically accepts her parents’and her own mortality.

Inthe second book, The Gatekeeper’s Challenge,Therese has the opportunity to transcend death by accepting five seeminglyimpossible challenges issued by Hades. All five challenges represent theuniversal fears of rejection, culpability, disorientation, death, and loss inthe forms of a box not allowed to be opened, an apple that shouldn’t be eaten,a labyrinth meant to confuse, a Hydra that wants to destroy, and the allure of bringing back the dead. These same myths are recycledagain and again through the centuries because they help us to recognize ourinner demons and inspire us to defeat them.

As I finish thetrilogy with The Gatekeeper’s Daughter,which will be released on December 1, 2013, I’m holding a contest from January1, 2013 to October 1, 2013 for my readers. Details can be found at my websiteat

About the Author

Eva Pohler teaches writing at the University of Texas at San Antonio, where she lives with her husband, three children, two dogs, two rats, and her very large collection of books.
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  1. Thank you for your review and for having me on your blog!


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