A few months back I read two very different books set in Athens, Greece by fellow indie authors. One is a native, the other a new resident to Greece. I was fortunate to connect with the lovely Effrosyni Moschoudi via Twitter and we exchanged emails. She kindly introduced me to Marissa Tejada, a journalist who now lives in Athens.
I was drawn to both books as they featured one of my favourite countries in the world. Even now I can hear the hubbub of vehicles bustling along Amalia Avenue, birds tweeting in the National Park set alongside Greek Parliament House and home to the Zappeion. And then there are the amazing islands, over 3000 speckled in the Aegean Sea, jewels nestled in the most incredible blue sea I’ve ever seen. Besides the beauty and majesty of the country, it’s the history and the ruins of ancient buildings and sites that fascinates me.
Since a teenager, it was my dream to visit Greece and Europe, but Greece was the main drawcard. And I did! I’ve been fortunate to visit Greece twice. After reading the books, I am ready to go again but am waiting for the planet of Jupiter to send a little fortune my way ;D
My reviews for each book are on Goodreads and Amazon but for the sake of convenience and ease, I have added them here for you.
The Necklace of Goddess Athena by Effrosyni Moschoudi
I did not know what to expect when I started reading this book and time-travelling ancient Greeks was a great twist. It has the elements of a romance story, a mystery and adventure which propels the plot. The characters are likeable and well, the setting is sublime. For me it was a wonderful journey back to Athens, walking around the Plaka, seeing the Acropolis and the Temple of Poseidon in Sounion.
There were a few captivating lines that embodied the story:
‘It is only the eyes that tell the truth at all times.’
‘…crystal drops sparkling in the sun like precious diamonds.’
‘From what he could see, she was holding a long spear that glowed with a blinding light. He could not look at it any more than he could face the sun on a summer’s day.’
I enjoyed the interaction between the characters and how the story unfolded. I particularly liked the malevolent aspect of Athena, a dark and unforgiving goddess. For all her virginal benevolence there lies the undertone of arrogance and expectation.
For readers who enjoy a light, charming story and experience the delights of Athens, I suggest you take the time to read this book.
Chasing Athens by Marissa Tejada
I don’t read a lot of women’s fiction, it’s not a genre that captures my interest but glad to be introduced to Marissa Tejada’s book. The main character, Ava has been living in Athens for 7 months, while her husband travelled for work. She’s learning Greek, made friends and a life yet communication with her spouse dwindles. He returns and announces he wants a divorce and reveals he’s been having an affair.
This story is about how Ava struggles with the emotional roller-coaster of her husband leaving her, living in a foreign country, learning to be independent and dating.
What I particularly enjoyed was the descriptive accounts of the city of Athens, the trips to the islands of Mykonos and Hydra. The vibrancy of the storytelling gives a sense of immediacy and immersion of Greek life, even the violent strikes.
For me it brought back wonderful memories of my trip to Greece and how much I’d like to return. This is a lovely story of self redemption and growth. I highly recommend reading this treasure by Marissa Tejada and look forward to her next book.
The book is available on Amazon US
Thank you for visiting and reading. I look forward to your comments 😀
To celebrate the anniversary
Accursed Women will be on sale for the months of November and December
50% off the retail price.
Paperback copy $9.49 US
eBook $2.99 US
It will make a great Christmas gift for a family member or friend.
Better yet, give yourself a well-earned present.