This is the second in the series and I really enjoyed the first one but after I read it, I thought it had been over-hyped. Now, don’t let that apparently negative statement let you think that there is any wrong with Who Let The Gods Out? (Maz’s first book), because there isn’t. No, no, when I say that it was over-hyped, I am really issuing a kind of back-handed compliment to everyone involved in the Marketing and PR, because it was EVERYWHERE.
It has been no different with Simply The Quest. It was published and released way back in January but I am still seeing it prominently placed in bookshops and clutched in the hands of small and large children alike. Quite right too.
Elliot Hooper needs to find all the chaos stones to save Earth from destruction. He has to fight Thanatos, the daemon of death and his terrifying mum to do it. If that weren’t stressful enough, he must also conceal his mother’s dementia to keep nosey Patricia Porshley-Plum at bay, deal with some unwelcome news about his father, AND try to help his best friend (who also happens to be a fallen constellation) become a true hero. All with the “help” of a group of eccentric, house-bound Greek gods.
Firstly, let me just say that you really do need to read Who Let The Gods Out? before Simply The Quest so if you haven’t read the first in the series, you better hope they’re on the Buy One, Get One Half Price table next time you head to the shops because you need both of these books in your life. And you just aren’t going to get the ninja Queen references in book 2 if you haven’t read book 1.
The best things about this book are the characters. All the Greek gods and goddesses are the personification of whatever they stand for, hilarious and exaggerated to the max. They are all likeable, despite being completely useless and feel modern and current. We all need a best friend like Hermes.
There is no way to stop your heart from going out to the totally lovable main character, Elliot. He is a child struggling to deal with a situation that would make most adults want to curl up and cry in a corner. I was rooting for him all the way (if I could find a way to thwart the ghastly Porshley-Plum once and for all, I absolutely would – no matter the consequences).
The plot, unsurprisingly, continues the hunt for the chaos stones but there are more than enough twists and turns to stop it from being predictable. That said, I honestly don’t know if it would matter if it was predictable, provided that it kept the fast pace and laugh a minute tone – Simply The Quest is even funnier than Who Let The Gods Out?
If you haven’t already read this, then you just HAVE GOT to. I promise you won’t regret it. Also, it has an awesome sprayed edge. So, you know, there’s that too.