The most prominent mythology used in young adult books is Greek Mythology. Which is fine, (there’s nothing wrong with Greek mythology) but there are other cultures/mythologies out there that can be used. It seems like Kiersten White knew this and instead of basing her story about Greek Mythology, she used Egyptian. That’s right, The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White is all about Egyptian mythology and it’s amazing.
Isadora’s family is seriously screwed up—which comes with the territory when you’re the human daughter of the Egyptian gods Isis and Osiris. Isadora is tired of her immortal relatives and their ancient mythological drama, so when she gets the chance to move to California with her brother, she jumps on it. But her new life comes with plenty of its own dramatic—and dangerous—complications . . . and Isadora quickly learns there’s no such thing as a clean break from family.
I both loved and hated Isadora. She was a strong, independent heroine but she was also really whiny, selfihsh and stubborn. She flat out refused to like anything even remotely related to her mother. She closed herself off from creating any emotional attachments to anyone because she believed that since mortal life is so finite (unlike her immortal parents’ lives), there was no point in falling in love. It would only cause pain.
Yet, because of those very traits, she refused to want a romantic relationship with Ry (the super cute, epic poetry writing, exactly like Homer, anti-social guy she meets). In her mind, love and relationships only bring pain and hurt, like with her parents. So, instead, Ry and Isadora became friends. HALLELUJAH! Do you know how rare it is to find a YA book where the heroine and the hero become friends before going straight to kissing? Incredibly rare. It almost, completely made up for all of Isadora’s annoying traits.
To be honest, the plot was kind of slow. There was more of Isadora complaining about her parents than any kind of action. But Kiersten White managed to have an underlying layer of tension, so you knew that something bad was coming for Isadora. The tension/foreshadowing kept me hooked. It also helped that the secondary characters (all of Isadora’s new friends) were funny and engaging. (You know, the opposite of Isadora.)
I cannot recommend The Chaos of Stars enough. I love, love, love it! It’s different from from typical young adult books. (Can I get a second HALLELUJAH for becoming friends first? Because, seriously, that’s the best part.) Isdora may have started out as terribly selfish, but she evolved over the course of the story, the way any good, well-written character does. Kiersten White is an amazing author and I will read anything she writes.