Although Katee Roberts is a popular erotica author who has many novels under her belt, Neon Gods, released last year, is the first novel in a Greek Gods series. Neon Gods is a smutty masterpiece that humanizes Greek legends and launches them into the modern world. Hades and Persophone have a fascinating dynamic together and are the best dog parents!
I have had Neon Gods by Katee Roberts recommended to me so many times before! And I finally got around to reading the audiobook. In short it was stunning! Seriously if you have the opportunity to listen to the audiobook give it a try, it has dual narrators!
Neon Gods is a Hades and Persephone retelling with modern twists. The Gods live in modern Olympus, and have access to cell phones, social media, books, and even paparazzi. But what makes this adaptation fascinating is the gentle leading man, Hades.
If you follow me on Instagram, you probably know I read most of my books through the Libby app, a library app you can access with a free library card, and my library has a great selection! Try it if you haven’t already.
Persephone Dimitriou is Olympus’s charming and kind girl. But this is only the mask Persephone chooses to show in public; in reality, she dreams of taking her inheritance and running as far away from Olympus as possible. But only three months until her inheritance kicks in, and Persephone finds herself engaged to Zeus, who has a reputation of cheating, abusing, and murdering his wives.
Persophone’s sees no way out but to run and never look back. But then Persephone’s chased to the river Styx in the middle of winter, and she crashes right into Hades. Despite ruling the undercity since he was a teen Hades is more of a myth to other families living in Olympus, but Persephone is fascinated by this brooding and handsome man.
She wants Hades, and she sees no better option than to end her engagement to Zeus, and fake date Hades. Hades would love nothing more than to piss off Zeus, but he’s hesitant to use Persephone to do it. That is until they strike a sinful bargain. But it does not take long for them to grow attached to each other. But Zeus and Dementer don’t play fair, and Hades can’t bear to see Persephone hurt. Which is all the motivation Hades needs to go to war to keep her safe.
I loved Neon Gods! Not only was this novel a great audiobook read, but the characters are dynamic and the plot well written too. I really enjoyed how Roberts modernized the Hades and Persophone retelling. This novel immediately places readers into the story with no info dumping or worldbuilding. Which was great because it allowed the story to unravel organically. In the first chapter we learn that Olympus is a modern city ruled by Zeus, who owns a successful company. Thirteen prominent families make up Zeus’s inner circle including the Dementers. Persophone’s family includes her mother and her sisters: Eurydice, Psyche, and Calisto. I loved hthe way Robert enrolled two more popular figures into Persephone’s family. This provided a protective sibling dynamic to Persophone.
Additionally, the inclusion of magic in Neon Gods is limited. I am not sure if it exists in this world aside from Hermes. Hermes delivers messages between all thirteen families, and she does this by mimicking the voice of the sender. But other than Hermes, there isn’t much mention of magic.
Speaking of Persephone, she is a bit of brat in this novel but in a good way! Persephone is overall is sweet and kind; she deeply cares for her sisters, but she quickly becomes protective of Hades too. However, when Persephone is with Hades, she’s good at pushing him to his limits. I loved this version of Persophone because she has her own agency and control of her life. Persephone wants to leave Olympus and live on her own, and she’s happy to wait until she’s old enough to inherit her fortune. But when Dementer takes that option away from her, she risks her life to run.
The legend of Hades and Persophone’s as I know it, is that Persophone’s forced to remain in the underworld with Hades during the winter because she ate the forbidden fruit— a pomegranate. But in Neon Gods, not only does Persophone choose to stay with Hades, she also chooses to begin a sexual relationship with him because they’re attracted to each other. And Hades’ constantly making sure Persophone’s is okay and consenting. Although many of the characters believe Hades is keeping Persophone against their will, that is definitely not the case in this novel.
Moreover, this novel is erotic. There are lots of smutty and sexy scenes throughout this novel. And exhibitionism and orgies are both featured a few times. Keep that in mind if you decide to read or recommend this one. But let me say the spicy scenes in this novel are hot! Oh, and Persophone and Hades have admitted to having relationships with people of the same gender. I did not know I needed Bi Persephone and Hades until I had Bi Persephone and Hades.
Give this novel a try. If you are looking for your next erotic, romance, or Hades and Persephone retelling, consider picking up Neon Gods.
I hope you enjoyed this review and until my next one I’ll be living in libros,
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