Reviews for Iris, Messenger


Horn Book Guide Reviews 2007 Fall
Iris suffers through her boring life as a middle school student outside Philadelphia until she discovers immortal Greek gods living in the area. With their help she learns about herself, meets her father, and improves life for her mother and for the down-and-out immortals themselves. The novel has an intriguing premise, but the prose is heavy-handed and the dialogue forced. Copyright 2007 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2008 Spring
Iris suffers through her boring life as a middle school student outside Philadelphia until she discovers immortal Greek gods living in the area. With their help she learns about herself, meets her father, and improves life for her mother and for the down-and-out immortals themselves. The novel has an intriguing premise, but the prose is heavy-handed and the dialogue forced. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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Kirkus Reviews 2007 April #2
Iris's discovery that the Greek gods have moved to the Philadelphia area sparks an adventure even more marvelous than the best of her many daydreams. Thanks to clues written in the margins of a 12th-birthday gift copy of Bulfinch's Mythology, Iris finds Poseidon running an oyster shack down on the Jersey Shore, Apollo playing jazz in a small club, Ares working as a lawyer and other deities, none of them what they once were, similarly keeping low profiles. Most are friendly sorts though, who offer her personal, chapter-length versions of familiar myths (including the story of Phaƫthon as a bluesy ballad) and send her on to the next encounter in what becomes a journey of self-discovery. Iris, it seems, is a member of the Family, and by the end, not only has she learned that her father isn't who she thought he was, but the sinking fortunes of her and her mother--an out-of-work soybean scientist--have undergone a literally miraculous reversal. Deming isn't the first to use the "American gods" premise, but she develops it with uncommon verve, and her characters, mortal or otherwise, positively sparkle. (Fantasy. 11-13) Copyright Kirkus 2007 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2007 July

Gr 5-8-- Iris Greenwold is a dreamer; it's how she escapes her miserable existence. Her mother researches soybeans for an uncaring employer and her wacky father lives far away and pays almost no attention to her. Erebus Middle School is awful, with classmates who torment her and teachers who don't understand why she doesn't pay attention. And then, for her 12th birthday, Iris receives an incredible gift: Bulfinch's Mythology . Reading about the exploits of the Greek gods is right up her alley, but she is puzzled when mysterious messages start popping up in the book's pages and downright startled to discover that the gods are all living nearby at the New Jersey shore and in the Philadelphia area. Moreover, they desperately need her help. As she meets such figures as Poseidon (who runs a seaside oyster shack), Apollo (owner of a cool jazz club), and Aphrodite (stylist extraordinaire), she's also treated to firsthand accounts of Greek myths. This engaging story of an unhappy girl whose dreaming pays off in wonderful ways will be a hit with adolescents dealing with those difficult middle school years. Give it to readers who gobble up Rick Riordan's "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" series (Hyperion/Miramax) and other novels where teens interact with the Greek pantheon.--Sharon Grover, Hedberg Public Library, Janesville, WI

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