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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Oh Goddess by Gwen Hayes

Oh Goddess by Gwen Hayes
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary; Paranormal
Length: Short (52 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4 books
Reviewed by Snapdragon

Born to protect women’s hearts, her own beats longingly for a mortal. Oops…

Ondina, one thousand years a goddess, doesn’t think much of mortal men. Probably because her sole purpose in life is to protect the hearts of women who don’t want to fall in love. And now one of those blasted men—Jack—has shattered her sacred chalice, trapping her in a mortal body.

Jackson Nichols, on the partner track at his law firm, is the first to admit he always follows his head. Never his heart. Dina is infuriating, messy, condescending, sexy, beautiful and…well, just about everything that doesn’t fit into his meticulously planned life.

Neither expects to find many redeeming qualities in the other. But when push comes to love, which will Dina choose? Her newly human heart…or one thousand years of duty?

*All author and editor proceeds from the sale of Oh Goddess will be donated to the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis. You can find out more about the foundation at

Warning: Recent studies show that consuming beverages while reading this story can cause damage to computer monitors, clothing, and sometimes nearby walls. Reader agrees to hold both Samhain Publishing Ltd. and Gwen Hayes harmless in case of accidental spewing caused by laughter.

College age, would-be conjurer Rachel’s ritual is hashed up by the intrusion of well-meaning (perhaps) but overbearing (definitely) brother Jack.

Ondina, goddess from the nether realm, is plopped in a perplexing situation from the first belligerent blast of Jack.

In "Oh Goddess," characters are Hayes’ strength. From the first sibling sniping, Rachel and Jack are believably brother and sister. Ondina is refreshingly straightforward, especially for one of the immortal realm. Her enchantment with the delights of cocktails and old movies further humanizes her.

Dialogue zips along, and some is quite beyond funny.

“I do not hate men. Why ever would you think that?”

Jack blinked at her. “Just a hunch. The word eviscerate comes to mind.”

Ondina’s quest is to protect the heart of women. Rachel’s first desire is to pursue her non-love related ambitions, and, second to that, she feels responsible for Ondina’s predicament. And Jack, well, he’s the well-meaning floundering menace in this tale. You really can’t help but like the guy (in between wanting to kick him, which is exactly how everyone else seems to feel about him.) The intensity – and humor – between Jack and this misplaced goddess make Rachel and Glen’s roles here fade to shadow.

This refreshingly original romance with wonderful, sometimes silly humor is really a delight. There are a few unnecessarily overstated points – where the author both shows us some wonderful emotion then goes on to thoroughly explain it, as if the reader was truly a nitwit; if that had been frequent, it would have intruded more seriously. Fortunately, the overstatement did not occur much. Hayes really did manage to pull off humorous sexual tension, from beginning to end. 4 books

A nice aside: the author notes her proceeds from "Oh Goddess" are being donated to the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis.