Cora, The Unwilling Queen
By Amy Hutchinson
Released: December 22nd, 2012
Genre: Young Adult
Genre: Young Adult
It seems like many authors are trying their hands at retellings of popular mythology. As a fan of Rick Riordan, I’ve read a great deal of Greek/Roman/Egyptian mythology retellings and I’ve become quite a fan of the genre. When I saw that copies of Cora, The Unwilling Queen were up for grabs on Goodreads, I had to enter. Luckily, I was chosen as one of the winners!
Cora, The Unwilling Queen is a retelling of the story of Hades and Persephone. I find this particular mythological story interesting, as I haven’t really come across any that have focused on it. Hutchinson did a great job of weaving the story into Cora’s life. I thought it was particularly fitting that the pomegranate was on the cover! Haha.
Overall, I enjoyed the book. Cora is a relatable character, as she was the kind of person to sort of blend into the background in high school and really let her friends help to define her. She isn’t drop-dead gorgeous or popular or a girlfriend of the hottest guy in school. She’s really a girl that you could get to know and be friends with. Her best friends, Joanna and Roxy are also interesting to read about, particularly the latter. It’s nice that they were there to help and support her through the trials she encountered during the story – though, admittedly, it would have been nice to have Cora a little more involved in her own troubles. Roxy was the one who found out that she was experiencing something similar to Persephone and when she’s in the Underworld, Soren is always coming to her rescue. Having Cora a little more active would have been a nice change to ultimately see.
Also, I felt that the pace of the book was rather fast. I felt that Cora’s story could have been fleshed out to where we learned a little more about her family and Soren and her friends. If Hutchinson had done that, I think that a 250 page book could have easily been a 350+ one. There were a few editorial issues here and there with double words but there really weren’t enough to take away from the story. I understand that the book is self-published and I hope to see if picked up by an actual publisher; it would be interesting to see how the story would change with an editor’s eye and encouragement. I think that it is entirely possible that they would be interested.
Cora had its drawbacks, but overall it was an enjoyable book.