Kate Winters has moved to Eden so her mother can spend her final weeks in her hometown. Kate's life is unhappy not only because her mother is dying of cancer, but because they have left New York behind for a leaky house and for Kate to face a new school, completely friendless. On her first day at school, she makes both friends and enemies and very quickly meets the mysterious Henry. Then circumstances force Kate to make a bargain with Henry: face several unknown and very possibly hazardous tests, with the rewards saving the life of a new friend, more time with her mother and becoming Henry's queen. Kate has walked into the Goddess Test, which will determine if she has the qualities to become immortal and the new queen of the Underworld. The only problem is, all of the contestants since Persephone abdicated have died.
A new take on the Persephone myth-- where the Greek queen of the Underworld lived half the year with her husband and half the year, the summer half, with her mother--The Goddess Test is an average romance. Though Kate is supposed to face perilous tests, she doesn't know she has faced them, mainly because they are some sort of clever stealth tests meant to show the real Kate, until the final judgement by the Olympians. Oddly enough, all of her tests stem from the Christian Seven Deadly Sins (gluttony, envy, wrath, etc.) despite the fact the Olympian myths preceded Christianity by centuries. Kate's reward, marriage to Henry, a model hot dude who is good natured, supposedly tormented, but flat hero seems to be more of a letdown than a true reward. Because the tests are hidden until the end, Kate spends most of her time getting dressed up--which she whines about frequently, possibly showing her modesty and sweetness--drinking tea and playing cards with her fiance, with few blips of conflict. However, this is the start of a series, so there may be more excitement in subsequent books, but this introduction is a bit lackluster.
It's always been just Kate and her mom—and her mother is dying. Her last wish? To move back to her childhood home. So Kate's going to start at a new school with no friends, no other family and the fear her mother won't live past the fall.
Then she meets Henry. Dark. Tortured. And mesmerizing. He claims to be Hades, god of the Underworld—and if she accepts his bargain, he'll keep her mother alive while Kate tries to pass seven tests.
Kate is sure he's crazy—until she sees him bring a girl back from the dead. Now saving her mother seems crazily possible. If she succeeds, she'll become Henry's future bride, and a goddess.