Cassandra Heeded’ is Book 2 of N W Moors’  Second Chances series. If you have always loved Greek myth and legend, as well as ancient history, don’t bother to read any further. Just buy the book. If not, stick with me, then buy the book anyway. 

N W Moors has cleverly placed human figures from the past in a modern setting. Specifically a small town in Connecticut, the state where she and I grew up. They are persons who have, arguably, been dealt a bad hand by the gods. Now they have a chance at redemption. In Book 1, ‘Icarus Rising’, Daedalus’ son, Icarus, flew too close to the sun on man-made wings and offended Apollo. He was banished to Hades with a pair of wings painfully embedded in his back. Cassandra was a priestess in ancient Troy who could foretell the future, whose curse was that no one would ever believe her prophesies. You can read more backstory in the novel, but suffice it to say Apollo once again was chapped. Seems as if he had a very thin skin.

Cassandra was raped by Ajax Minor, the smaller, swifter version of the Ajax Major we all know and love, after the fall of Troy.  Then she was carried off by Agamemnon and subsequently murdered on the way back to Greece. The gods took a measure of pity on her and let her exist for eternity in the Elysian fields. She was spared Hades. But she became horribly bored after two thousand years of bliss. Apollo shows up and offers her the chance to shed the curse of prophesy. But as in ‘Icarus’, Cassandra must recover an object for Zeus. Cassie, as she is called in contemporary Connecticut, decides to take the risk. 

I’ll won’t discuss the plot but will tell you that Russ (Icarus) and his girlfriend, Eve, appear again as important characters in the tale. As does Artemis, Apollo’s sister and goddess of the Hunt and the Moon, who works, quite happily, in the kitchen of Eve’s Bookstore/Café. No spoiler but she is very good at baking and thoroughly enjoys it! Go figure. Athena is also in the story, enjoying the modern world immensely as a high-powered financial dynamo. That you can figure.

As with ‘Icarus’, the book is just plain fun to read. Unlike ‘Icarus’, in which Russ and Eve had to pull off a heist to satisfy Zeus, ‘Cassandra’ is more subtle. And as we are introduced to Hephaestus, the lame god of Fire and Forge, it can also be touching. The main characters, Cassie Troi (clever) and Jack Burnett, reveal more of the inner workings of their psyches than did Russ and Eve.  

This is something not uncommon to novelists who write a series. As with many things, authors grow along with their stories. I’ve found this to be the case with my own ‘Ur Legend’ series. I write under the pen name Ajax Minor and my story is about a second chance as well. Ironic, huh?