Recreated by Colleen Houck
Recreated is another one of those surprising instances where the second in a trilogy is much better than the first.
If any of you read my review of Reawakened last year you’ll know that I did not feel it did my dear beloved Egyptian mythology justice. Or, rather, my too-many frustrations with the MCs rendered me unable to enjoy the history. If it weren’t that Egyptian mythology is basically never used in any form of text nowadays (*wink wink* *nudge nudge* authors!) and my undying love for (read: obsession with) Ancient Egypt, Recreated probably would have been one of those sequels that got put on my TBR list just because I don’t like not finishing series and then remained mysteriously unread until I forgot about it. Not that that’s happened before. Haha. Ha. Nope…
A thousand thanks to the old gods and the new for depriving me enough of Egyptian goodness that I was forced to read this. Please accept the sacrifice of a virtual goat in tribute for my thanks.
Basically everything that made me want to send Reawakened to the crocodile-lion-hippo goddess Ammit to be devoured was rectified in numero dos. Goodbye strangely obedient and not-adventurous-as-she-thinks Liliana–Lily is ballsier, sharper, and just better. I’m not even going to complain about not having seen her progression take place, I’m just happy I don’t have to read any of her whining and I get a character I actually genuinely like. Don’t get me wrong, she has her quirks and fairly often had me squinting at the page in a ‘did that seriously just happen?’ fashion but whatever, it’s an improvement! My issues with Amon not being very otherworldly were basically negated since Recreated happens in the Egyptian Netherworld, not the human world so he fits right in. Plus, since Amon and Lily have already fallen head-over-mummy-wrappings in insta-love their romance is less overtly obnoxious (it’s annoying more indirect ways but that I can accept).
Oh BTW, Tia and Ashleigh and the new characters are all wonderful so bonus points. If Asten had stayed as fun and flirty as he originally was instead of turning tormented and serious I’d say I actually kind of loved everyone.
I must say though that this is one of the strangest love trianges/squares/unknown-multifacted-shapes I have ever ever read. Lily loves Amon but then there’s this whole thing with Asten but Tia’s living inside of her and mixing things up when Ashleigh jumps in and crushing on Ahmose begins. Huh? What? I’m all too familiar with the which-brother-do-I-choose love stories but all three of them? While on a quest to save her ‘beloved’? Again, what? Oh and all the while Lily’s got Amon’s heart scarab (which literally contains the essence of his heart) making all the guys and gods trip over themselves lusting after her. It’s just weird. There’s so much weird.
While Reawakened focused on the whole mummy resurrection thing and Seth’s evil mission, Recreated takes us fully into the world of Egyptian mythology, which I thoroughly enjoy. It’s kinda a Rick Riordan thing with the gods and goddesses and creatures all turned into actual characters with distinctive, power-related personalities. I’m obviously biased in this case since Egyptian history is one of my absolute favourites but I liked seeing the myths fleshed out like they’re real; it’s one of my favourite parts of mythology novels so I’m glad Houck delved into them this time ’round.
Now. Just because I thought Recreated was an improvement does not mean that I loved it. There is a lot going on in this novel and a lot of it is weird. Crazy mis-match weird. Plus despite it’s quick start it plateaus for a looooooong time in the middle. Then there’s also the whole romance wonkiness and the grippings of the somewhat-improved insta-love. Like I said, it’s definitely not my favourite novel ever but even barring the issues I had, Recreated is a lot of fun. It’s silly and funny and quirky and unique, and I genuinely liked it. If the series or myths interest you I would seriously recommend getting through the first and reading the second. Should the third continue in this trend it looks as though the Recreated trilogy is shaping up well!
Click here for the book synopsis on goodreads!