As the book begins, Athena is dead. How she ended up that way creates the intrigue sustaining the book. The child, Sherine Khalil renames herself Athena after her uncle was discussing with her mother on how her real name will betray her origins and something like Athena gave nothing away. As a child, she shows a strong religious vocation and reports seeing angels and saints, which both impresses and worries her parents.
She goes into a London University to pursue Engineering at the age of 19 but it's not what her heart wanted. One day she just decides that she wanted to drop out of college, get married and have a baby. Here, the author mentions that this might be due to the fact that she was abandoned herself and wants to give all that love she could to her child which she didn't receive from her birth mother. Two years later, her marriage falls apart because they are facing too many problems due to their young age and lack of money or mostly because he felt that she loved only the child and used him to get what she wanted. A very interesting quote she uses is "From Ancient Greece on, the people who returned from battle were either dead on their shields or stronger, despite or because of their scars. It's better that way: I've lived on a battlefield since I was born, but I'm still alive and I don't need anyone to protect me." She grows into a woman in search of answers to many questions that arise within a person. She had a life which many felt was content because she had a child of her own, money, and friends; everything but her mind was at peace, so she searches for the answer to the classical question of "Who am I?" through many experiences. In her quest, she opens her heart to intoxicating powers of mother and becomes a controversial spiritual leader in London.
The above taken from Wikipedia.
I've never read a book from other people's perspective hence this is a first for me. I wasn't used to it so it took me a very long time to finish this book. I felt it was a little messy but it's actually in order... I guess I wasn't getting the hang of it. I stopped reading it for a few months and then when I picked it up again, I was able to enjoy the book better... slowly tried to envision Athena in many of her friends or acquaintances eye's. A worthy yet unexpected read.
Author: Paulo Coelho
Genre: Fiction, Occult, Supernatural