The Many Works of Pat Hatt
October 10, 2014
Fun Fantasy/Sci-Fi Romp From Olympus to Hell and Beyond
“A Not So Barren World” is a fantasy adventure novel where two soul mates must fight Hell itself to get back to earth.
Jack and Emily are soul mates who have been living on Olympus, hanging out with Zeus and the other gods, but eventually they decide it’s time to return home. Their plan is thwarted when the evil Drazin, in league with the power-hungry Hera, steals their son away. The lovers lose their fight against Drazin and find themselves in Hell, where Lucifer toys with them as he slowly steals their essence for his own power—but they refuse to be defeated and are determined to find their way back to earth and to their son.
I’ve always been interested in Greek mythology, especially modern takes on it such as Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” and Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series, so I enjoyed how “A Not So Barren World” fits into this tradition. Emily and Jack have a strong love that you can see is true, and I liked how their romance was based on their devotion to each other, rather than on conflict. I also liked the author’s version of Hell, with the death tubes and the Leftovers—it’s a unique creation that swings between amusing and chilling; many scenes are quite tense as Emily and Jack struggle to hold onto themselves.
I would recommend “A Not So Barren World” to readers who enjoy fantasy/sci-fi stories dealing with Greek gods and the havoc they can wreak with their schemes, jealousies, and desires.