Series: Covenant, #4
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Genre: young adult, fantasy, mythology
My Rating: ★★★★☆
There is a spoiler section in this review.
Fate isn’t something to mess with and now, neither is Alex.
Alex has always feared two things: losing herself in the Awakening and being placed on the Elixir. But love has always been stronger than Fate, and Aiden St. Delphi is willing to make war on the gods—and Alex herself—to bring her back.
The gods have killed thousands and could destroy entire cities in their quest to stop Seth from taking Alex’s power and becoming the all-powerful God Killer. But breaking Alex’s connection to Seth isn’t the only problem. There are a few pesky little loopholes in the whole an Apollyon can’t be killed theory, and the only person who might know how to stop the destruction has been dead for centuries.
Finding their way past the barriers that guard the Underworld, searching for one soul among countless millions, and then somehow returning will be hard enough. Alex might be able to keep Seth from becoming the God Killer or she might become the God Killer herself.
(This synopsis is from Goodreads.)
I’ve read Apollyon (kinda sorta) twice now. What do I mean by that? Well, dear reader, I stupidly read the fifth book (Sentinel) before reading the fourth book (Apollyon), because I thought that Sentinel WAS the fourth book. Half way through the fifth book I realized the reason why I didn’t understand what the heck was going on was not because it’s been a year since I’ve read the third book, but because I skipped A WHOLE ENTIRE BOOK. So I stopped where I was in Sentinel and started reading Apollyon. THEN, I stopped reading a third of the way through because school was taking up more time than I had liked and now I decided to re-read the whole thing again since I didn’t remember what had happened in the first third of the book. TL;DR – I kind of screwed myself over by reading the books in the wrong order so I might not get all my facts straight.
That being said, let’s get onto the meat of the review.
At the beginning of the series, Alex (the protagonist) was super brash and cocky. She goes head-first and acts before she thinks. I didn’t find her personality that annoying, but I could see why some people couldn’t stand it. If you’ve been reading the series and are thinking about quitting because of Alex, I have good news for you. Throughout Apollyon, you get to see her mature and understand the scope of her responsibility. She thinks growing up sucks (as many kids do when they start to mature), but she gets that it’s necessary.
As usual, the story-telling was on point. There is never a dull moment in the story because the gang is constantly in danger. There were tons of emotional moments for those who aren’t into constant action. Some were sweet. Other times, your heart would cry out for what the characters had to go through and what they lost. There’s laughter, romance, guilt, and grief.
My heart goes out to Alex. She has so many expectations from tons of different groups of people that it’s a wonder that she doesn’t crumble from the weight. The gods want one thing from her. Seth wants another. Her friends and family want a different thing from her. She’s being pulled in every direction that I’m surprised she doesn’t burst as much as she did in the book.
I have recently listened to the audiobook for Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods (a book with a compilation of stories about the Greek gods, but more kid-friendly), and I’m super glad I finished it before starting this book. I realized that there were some subtle hints of mythology (other than the gods existing) woven into the stories. They’re hard to pick out if you don’t know the stories themselves, but they’re not essential to understand the story. It was cool just to know the reference. It’s like small brownie points.
This section has spoilers. If you don’t want to get spoiled, I suggest you skip to the character section.
Ok, are they gone? Cool, now we can talk SPOILERS!
The main things I wanted to talk about is Lea’s death and Alex’s relationship with Aiden, but before I start with that, let’s talk Ares.
Throughout Apollyon, Alex and the team tries to figure out who is supporting/controlling Lucien and Seth. I had a sneaking suspicion that it was Ares, and there were hints leading up to it. First off, who better would support the future God Killer if not the god of war? Killing all the other gods would spark outrage and chaos, something that Ares thrives on. Also, there were hints as Alex visits the Underworld for answers when they entered a room that gave off Ares vibes. Alex was getting this sort-of deja vu and it wasn’t until it was a little too late that she realized who was behind all the attacks. I thought it was clever of Armentrout to reveal the god towards the end of the story, because I know there’s going to be one, final, epic smack-down in the last book and I’m excited to read about it.
The thing that shocked me the most was Lea’s death. I knew Armentrout hinted about it in the story through Alex’s nagging feeling that someone in their group of nine was going to die, but I didn’t expect it to be Lea. There was so much animosity between Alex and Lea at the beginning of the story that I didn’t expect them to become as close as they did throughout the series. Sure, they weren’t friends, per say, but they tolerated each other well enough. You could honestly feel Alex’s pain and guilt through the page when Lea suddenly dies right in front of her. There was so much left unsaid, so much to repair, and now neither of them get the chance to do that. Both of the characters have grown so much since the first book that I had hoped that they would at least talk about their differences and make it up to each other. They couldn’t because of the chaos that was constantly building, and now they have no time at all to fix what was broken.
On a happier note, Aiden is a saint. How he puts up with Alex’s antics sometimes? I have no idea. He is the epitome of book boyfriends. He’s super supportive, willing to fight for and beside Alex, and doesn’t give a crap about what others think about the relationship. He wants Alex to be the best version of herself, and honestly just wants her to be happy after all the crap she has gone through and will continue to go through. He’s observant and protective. Basically, I’m a huge fan of Aiden and I think he’s the water to Alex’s fire. They put each other in check. Alex pushes Aiden out of his comfort zone (which he needs occasionally) and Aiden reels her in when she becomes a bit too much. Basically, they’re perfect for each other and I can’t be happier with the pairing. I think I was Team Seth before, but now I’m on the Team Aiden ship and it’s sailing at full force.
Bless her soul. She doesn’t deserve what is probably in store for her in the last book.
I could not be happier that he exists. He’s just… perfect. (For the story, that is.)
I was indifferent about Alex’s uncle in the first couple books, but now I know that I like him as a character. He’s probably the closest thing Alex is going to get as a father figure in her life, and you can tell that he truly cares for her.
I don’t remember much about her from the past stories (it’s been a couple years since I’ve read the third book), but she’s pretty cool. She’s like that cool aunt that everyone wishes they had that’s badass but also super caring.
What an icon, honestly. I love him and would protect him at all cost.
I was rooting for her. I really was.
Compared to the other characters, Olivia came across as pretty flat in this book. Granted, she didn’t have a lot of page time (kind of like actors and screen time, but for books), so she didn’t have a lot of chances to grow. I hope we get to see a little more of her in the last book.
BOY, IF YOU DON’T GET YO A** TOGETHER…!
There is a lot left to be desired with Seth’s actions, but I can’t blame him. The boy just wants to be accepted and loved. Is that too hard to ask for?
I’m in between liking the dude and wanting to smack him in the gut, which is pretty much everyone’s feelings about Apollo.
I give Apollyon 4 out of 5 unicorn horns. If you haven’t read the series, I highly recommend it.
Until next time….