Book Review: The Goddess of Nothing At All (2021)

hands holding open a book and flipping through the pages; text says, 'book review: indie book spotlight'

The Goddess of Nothing At All by Cat Rector

A couple of wolves were hardly going to stop me.

gif of a woman in furs smirking

This hardback is absolutely gorgeous, oh my goodness! It feels nice in your hands. Is that a strange thing to say about a book? I don’t care, it’s true! This hardback has a soft cover and it’s so pretty and I was in love with the book before I even opened it. And you just know a book is going to be good when it opens with a quote from Libba Bray (a writing queen, tbh).

SPOILER WARNING

A Jotun. Tall and lean, his open palm full of wildfire. It was him. It had to be […] The Trickster’s gaze travelled to the bloodstain on my trousers and back to my eyes. “Let’s end this, shall we?” His voice was low and coy, a small smirk on his lips.

gif of Loki throwing a blade and hitting an enemy target

The Goddess of Nothing At All tells Sigyn and Loki’s story. BRING. IT. ON. Their first meeting is just *chef’s kiss*. Loki is such a fun character, right from the start. Watching him run circles of thievery around Sigyn had me giggling.

Their ‘family’ in Asgard really frustrated me, though. Not that they weren’t well written, they absolutely were, they were just such jerks. I say ‘family’, cos everyone from Odin to Sif were so endlessly dismissive, antagonistic and cruel to both Sigyn and Loki. I really appreciated Loki’s resistance to everyone’s scorn, but Sigyn’s longing to be needed and approved of by the others made me growl internally a few times. I understand why, like, it makes sense for her characterisation – she’s always been pushed aside and forgotten about and dismissed – and I’m glad she slowly stopped caring so much as the book went on and her confidence grew, but there were a lot of moments early on where I wanted to be like GURL WHY DO YOU CARE WHAT ODIN THINKS?? HE’S BEING SUCH AN ARSEHOLE JUST DO YOUR OWN THING!! And then Thor just flipping on a dime and turning against Loki also really bothered me cos I was hoping Thor was going to have Loki’s back ;_;

gif of Loki saying, 'You had one job.'

I’m glad Loki couldn’t have given a toss about anyone’s derision, but I did feel so bad for him for basically all of it. JUSTICE FOR LOKI!!!

I was delighted when Sigyn finally lost her shit.

“I know that Sif said things to Loki that we’d have strung anyone else from the rafters for saying. If it weren’t for him, you wouldn’t have your hammer, or your spear, or your godsforsaken shiny boar. You talk about his morality, but the only person in this room with a clean conscience is Idunn. I know the lies of more than half of you, and each of you either smells like your secret lover or has blood under your nails.”

gif of a woman dressed in medieval clothing stabbing her knife into a table covered in goblets, grapes and a candle

YAS GIRL GO

And it was really frustrating for Thor and the others to flipflop so often where it concerned Loki and Sigyn. I really struggled to like any of them because they were just so cruel and unforgiving.

The scenes with Sigyn and Loki caring for each other were lovely, though, and I’m glad the romance didn’t take forever between them to blossom. I like slow burn, but I am also an impatient shipper and start drawing heart eyes around the characters from the get-go with some couples, so my shipper heart squealed at their romance.

SUCH PRECIOUS MUFFINS \o/

gif of a man and a woman kissing

It must also be said that the writing in this book is lush. Descriptive. Enthralling. It is certainly an exceptional debut novel.

Flowers blossom most thoroughly when given time, affection, and kindness. This is, I suspect, true for most things in life.

This book totally took me by surprise, I must say. I wasn’t anticipating the scope of the tale and so many of the twists, that’s for sure. I think I’m so used to first books in a series being just, like, the start of a romance, that I didn’t anticipate how much more of the story would come after Loki and Sigyn’s love story began, blossomed and became something so much more. The sheer breadth of the The Goddess of Nothing At All reminds me of earlier epic fantasy books (like, 1970s-1980s fantasy) – and I totally mean that as a compliment. This is a tale that span years, generations, parents, and their children and beyond.

Rector weaves a deeply intricate tale herein of family, love, loss, survival, endurance and so much else besides. There are *so many* unexpected wrenches thrown into the lovers’ paths to trip them up and tear that apart (I was *not* expecting Loki’s reveal to Sigyn after his long absence at one point ;_;). I amn’t as familiar with Norse mythology as I’d like, but seeing how intricately Rector incorporates all the legends, figures, descendants and locations just left me in awe. I honestly could not have guessed some of the reveals, so hats off to the author! It’s great when a novel can totally surprise you! I’m very curious to see how Epilogues for Lost Gods turns out!

Thank you so much to the author for a review copy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s