Read Whatever Gods May Be by Sophia Kell Hagin Online


Jamie Gwynmorgan doesn't believe in prayer. She doesn't believe in anything much. Except that people can't be trusted -- certainly not anyone she's ever met. But Jamie knows some things. From experience. She knows if she died, nobody would give a damn. Nobody would even notice. She knows the better she can fight, the safer she'll be. That's why she can't resist the sleek,Jamie Gwynmorgan doesn't believe in prayer. She doesn't believe in anything much. Except that people can't be trusted -- certainly not anyone she's ever met. But Jamie knows some things. From experience. She knows if she died, nobody would give a damn. Nobody would even notice. She knows the better she can fight, the safer she'll be. That's why she can't resist the sleek, dark lethality of the weapon -- and the recruiter's promise that yes, if she's strong enough, good enough, she'll get to fire that weapon in combat. She doesn't care about the uniform. And screw the pretend-camaraderie. Only Safe matters -- and if she can do combat, then maybe she can fight her way to Safe. Jamie expects a grueling fight that she might lose. What she never expects is to win love....

Title : Whatever Gods May Be
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781602821835
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 264 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Whatever Gods May Be Reviews

  • Lex Kent
    2019-03-07 06:35

    Wow this was intense! This is dark, gritty, violent, and not easy to read. This is book one, in a three book series. I got book three, as an ARC this month. I am so anal about reading books in order that I had to start at the beginning. I don’t mind though, I have wanted to read Hagin for a while. What I did not realize is how gritty these books are. Luckily, it was a really good read, just a tough one.This book takes place in the future. The USA is at war in Asia. This actually seemed like a slightly futuristic version of the Vietnam War. Jamie is 17 years old. She knows she will either go to jail for murder she will commit, or she can join the Marines. Jamie is about to find out just how tough it really is, fighting in a war.My actual paper back copy of this book says this is a romance. This is not a romance; I don’t know how it got so mislabeled. Jamie is in a sort of friends with benefits situation, but don’t read this book looking for a romance.Jamie is very hard on herself, but still a really likeable character. You root hard for her and just want to see her survive. She is smart and a great Marine, you actually forget she is only 17 and 18 in this book. This is the kind of book where you bond with the main character and keep thinking about her after it’s over. As I said in the beginning, this is a dark book. There is torture, violence, talk of sexual abuse, really hard subjects. Luckily, while some of this stuff happens in front of you, some of the worse happens off camera so to say. It made it a little easier to handle.I was thinking to myself, with this being such a dark book, why did I like it? Well it is very well written. The style of writing takes a minute to get used to, but Hagin is pretty masterful. Also, there is a ton of excitement. You get sucked into this book after only a few chapters, and I could not stop until I was done. I even found my heart thudding in my chest at times. There was definitely some “oh my God” moments for sure.I will be reading the next two books shortly. I am looking forward to reading them, but hope they have some good moments to counteract the dark. All I know is Jamie is going to be suffering from some major PTSD after everything she went through in this book. Oh, I forgot to mention, this is almost a little magic in this book. Sort of like Jamie has a 6th sense. It is not a big part of the book, it only happens a few times, but I’m curious where that may go in the next book. If you can handle a book about war, that is dark and gritty, give this book a chance. This is not the normal Bold Stokes Books, type of book. But it is very well written, intense and action packed. I don’t think I will forget this book anytime soon.

  • Sunny
    2019-03-15 02:58

    Whatever it may beThis book is not beautifully written nor does it have an original storyline. And yet I was compelled to read this to the end,and I am really glad I did. In this first book a thin layer of melancholy lies within Jamie from the start to finish. I am not sure what attracted me. A lonely,angsty (not brooding) girl of nothing growing up to be a accomplished military officer respected (and maybe loved) by many? Tales of friendship and good old camaraderie? All those glorious guns blazing scenes? Whatever it may be I look forward to reading the next chapter of Jamie's story. I hope she finds peace and happiness.

  • Frank Van Meer
    2019-03-07 05:47

    This book.The first chapters were so chaotic, I nearly dropped it. But I understand now they are used to describe a very very broken girl, who has nothing left in the world and sees no reason to live anymore. For reasons only explained later, she is forced to choose between two evils: jail time or join the Marines. She chooses the latter, and is slingshot into the military.The author does an excellent job of conveying despair and the utter loneliness she endures during the first 13 weeks. Sometimes I didn't know whether to cheer her on, or feel so sad for her. Yet she manages, and to her relief she finds out she is an excellent marksman, and is whisked off to sniper training. During that training, it is clear that despite her feelings of unworthines, she doesn't give up easily. She shows determination, ingenuity and courage, and even leadership. A far cry from the girl we were introduced to. But no mattter what she does or manages to pull off, she constantly doubts herself and is convinced she is not worthy of anything.Immediately after they graduate (Jamie with honors no less) they are deployed, there is a war going on, eerily similar to the Vietnam War. We don't exactly have a timeline here, but it's set in near future, 10 years after a pandemic struck the planet. Geo-politically nothing seems to have changed, but there are differences. The war is never really explained ( the old adage of possesion of natural resources and religion) and it's more technological in nature.Jamie excels in this environment. She gets one promotion after the other and has a very high succes rate in her missions. She will do everything to bring her men back in one piece. But throughout the whole book, Jamie still believes she is nothing. She is constantly doubtful, nothing she does will change that.And that is so sad to read. Several times, again, I didn't know whether to cheer or to feel sad for her. She is so strong. So smart. So everything. But it doesn't matter to her. Yet, she is determined to stay alive. That is such a strange contradiction.This is one of the few books I've read that masterfully combines action (there's plenty of it) and character development. Only the other day I complained about that in a book I read. Usually one is sacrificed for the other, but not here. Everything she does makes her stronger. And the only one that doesn't see it that way is Jamie. It breaks my heart, really, to read that.I couldn't find anything wrong with this book. Sure, it had a rocky start, but it was there for a reason. The military action and proceedings seem acurate. Top notch caharcter development. Wonderful character.If I had to mention one thing that stood out, it is that later on, Jamie shows a surprisingly sharp grasp of strategy and geo-political awareness. Where did that come from? Sometimes she talks like a 4 star general or a politician. Not that it stood out regarding to the war, but nowhere is it mentioned while she is in training. It came out of the blue, so to speak.Anyway, I'm so glad I didn't give up at the start. Definitly a 5 star book for me.

  • M
    2019-02-16 01:58

    Interesting read with a future setting and a hard tech approach to down and dirty fighting.Some of the experiences described in this book are deliberately extreme and while I had a couple of moments when I wasn't sure that the heroine's reactions to the situation felt true, it was a compelling read and not your usual Bold Strokes book.

  • Stephanie
    2019-03-15 04:54

    This is not my typical fluff romance story. In fact, it is almost the complete opposite. Except there is a love story....both a romantic one and a redemptive one. I decided to read this trilogy after receiving an ARC for the third book. When I started reading it I realized there had to be more....and there was! 2 books before it! So, I backed up and started from the beginning.I have to be honest, this is a dark series of books. I found parts of this book in particular, quite disturbing and considered not finishing it at one point. If you are a person with certain triggers-I would find out more about this book before reading it.But, in the end, Jamie Gwynnmorgan drew me in and wouldn't let me stop. Jamie is a young Marine that will just not let herself give up. She is truly inspiring. She goes through hell, but finds a great deal on the other side. I gave this book 4 stars because I found a lot of the political talk difficult to follow. However, there is a trail and if you stick to it the book holds together well. Lots of intrigue and interesting characters.

  • Elaine Burnes
    2019-03-06 00:39

    This is a very impressive novel, never mind being a debut novel. In short, Jamie Gywnmorgan joins the Marines and goes to war. She joins for various reasons, none of which is very explicitly explained. Her mother is dead (actually took me awhile to figure out this person was her mother), some guy did something horrible (we find out what later--nothing is dumped on us), a friend helped her prepare. There's a reference to jail time, but I didn't get that. We see her through basic training and she’s good. Very good. So she gets to go to scout/sniper school. She’s also good at that. So she gets to go to war.Jamie is an Aud-like character (who is probably also [some other author's character]-like character) and I don't think that was conscious or even unconscious, nor is it a detriment to the story. We just like to think that out there somewhere is someone who can survive, maybe even thrive on stuff that would flatten us. She's bigger than life. Literally, big, strong, smart, able to handle more than just about everyone around her. Which is good, because a lot of bad things happen to her.I think the blurb is a bit misleading, mainly because this story defies soundbites. The writing is clean and taut, the plot moves along logically and with interest. The characters, both good and evil, feel real and realistic. There are some nice metaphors and themes that run through this. It would probably be best enjoyed with two readings, but that's not a requirement to liking it, just appreciating it more. I feel I might have missed some things.This is not an easy read—we’re talking jungle warfare after all--but to Hagin’s credit, I didn’t have to look away. Because the POV is so very tight on Jamie, we only know what she knows and she’s not conscious for the worst of it. We’ll wake up with her and find some horrible thing has happened, but we didn’t have to watch it happen. This is good, in my mind. It let me get very close to the horrors of war in a way I probably wouldn’t otherwise.This story takes place in an indeterminate near future--post-pandemic, whatever that was (I wish there had been more about that). I knew that going in, but if I hadn't, I might have had trouble getting into the story. There is a lot that is familiar—buses, tents—this isn’t far off science fiction. This could be in the next decade or two. The gadgets were cool, the jargon understandable. She did a great job of explaining things along the way that were not info dumps. I'm just not sure why it needed to be in the future--except she needed women in combat. Otherwise, it wasn't that important, it seemed.I did have a rather serious WTF moment near the end. Something happens that I just found too weird. And a character appears who seems to come from nowhere—not that her presence wasn’t believable, but Jamie’s connection (which I had to go back and reread to realize I was putting more into it than was there) to her was weirdly coincidental. But this is so far into the book that it doesn’t take too much away from it.Mostly what I like is the fearlessness of the writing. I'm not sure how to explain what I mean, but I felt it.I agree with the review on Lambda Literary, especially this: "The publisher has designated this a romance for reasons passing all understanding."That is perhaps my biggest problem with the book (and not reflected in my stars because it's not Hagin's fault). Several times I looked at the spine and assured myself that yes, there's an R there, for Romance. This is not a romance, especially not a Romance. It breaks most of Radclyffe's formula rules for Romance. I just don't understand why it's there. They have other imprints they could put it under. I complain because I think women might buy this expecting a Romance, but it's not. It's a war story. It's a gritty, gruesome war story. It's also speculative fiction because it takes place in the future. Just perplexing.That said, I'm glad it got published!

  • D. Leigh
    2019-02-16 00:46

    WOW! This is an amazing first book and an absolute must-read. After the first chapter, I wondered if I was going to like this story because you stay in the main character's head the whole time ... but not like the typical first-person narrative. It's a little disorienting at first because the thoughts jump around some. Then as the character becomes more focused, so does the narrative and I realized I wasn't reading about what Jamie thought, I was thinking with her. Very powerful. I finished it last night and found myself thinking about Jamie the minute I opened my eyes this morning. I like a book where the characters are powerful enough to stick with you.

  • Dawn Bellville
    2019-03-18 01:59

    The sacrifices of our military will never be fully realized, but stories such as this remind us of the sacrifices made for the sake of our freedom. This gripping novel was written with such emotion, I found myself sympathizing with the plight of the main character. While the beginning was a bit technical and slow, it is well worth the effort to keep going. A glossary of acronyms would have been very helpful for reference throughout. I have great hopes for a sequel!! Many thanks, Sophia, for a riveting novel and a magnificent story of bravery. Thank you.

  • Della
    2019-03-18 23:44

    The first sentence was all I needed to be drawn into the story and intrigued by the main character Jamie Gwynmorgan. Jamie becomes such a vivid character you cannot help but root for her. Surrounded by ghosts of her past and running head first into her life we feel her angst yet are not pulled down by it.The story is action packed and it is hard to put the book down. I found myself consumed by the details packed into the story line. In a good way! The writing is powerful yet nuanced. You see what Jamie sees. I reserve 5 Stars for writing that is not a carbon copy. I highly recommend this novel as I rush off to start the next novel in this series, Shadows of Something Real.

  • Cab
    2019-03-07 00:02

    I will admit that I judged this book by its’ cover. I’ve scrolled on by it numerous times over the last couple of years and my reaction was always, “hmmm no”. On occasion as I was scrolling by I may have read the book summary but I still wasn’t really interested. Granted, this is all subjective I couldn’t tell you what about the cover didn’t grab me, I just know that if I am in a store or online sometimes the cover itself grabs my attention and makes me pick up a book. Although, I think it’s the cover/title combination that usually grabs me.Then a couple of weeks ago I got a coupon from Bella Books. Yes I know an entirely different publisher but what the heck they were cross selling and the coupon tipped me over the edge to try the book. I’m glad I did because the story itself was intriguing. I haven’t a clue why the last sentence in the book summary says “What she never expects is to win love.” That implies this is a romance novel. It really is not. At best the love Jamie finds appears to be deep friendship/familial love. So don’t get your hopes up. We meet Jamie Gwynmorgan while she is on the bus heading towards basic training. This is a military/war based story. I haven’t a clue if the technology military descriptions are accurate or made up. It didn’t matter to me it’s just part of the story. We quickly learn that Jamie doesn’t give up, she’s always thinking ahead and how to get to the next step and above all how to keep herself and the people around her safe and alive. There are a couple of things I found a little confusing in the story. We periodically hear about hear snippets throughout the story about her life growing up and “Alby”. It took me reading ¾ of the book to get a clue that Alby and her mother are one in the same. I also never understood the random hallucination or day dream of the white haired woman that Jamie would hear/see or how that added value to the story. For me the second ½ of the story was a better read and I almost wish it started at that point and took the ending out a bit further because relationships between Jamie and Senator Hillinger and Jamie and the Major General Ben Embry were interesting and I would have enjoyed finding out what happened next.

  • Flo
    2019-03-18 00:45

    I've read this book at least twice over the last couple of years and it never gets old. Of course the last time I read it, was as a fresh reminder before starting the sequel, which is equally amazing by the way.This novel has so much action and excitement packed at every turn that I was hoping for better luck and easier time for the main character. I was also inspired by her perseverance and success despite not having an easy time.The story also perfectly illustrated how Jamie grew from the girl you get introduced to the fierce and battle hardened warrior she became. The writing not only takes you thru the tangible changes but also the complex emotional ones.How great to have such an capable heroine you can't help but love and cheer for.

  • Queen
    2019-02-15 22:37

    I didn't expect this kind of book when I first picked it out. I thought it would be centered on a romantic relationship, but it was such a small part of the book! So much happens in this book that it's hard to keep up. It's a very different genre than I'm used to, but I really enjoyed it nonetheless. There was a lot of action to keep me reading since the beginning. It gave me a really good insight of the army life which I knew nothing about. I have a different perspective now. Also, I have to add that the end is my favorite part of the book. It made it all so much better for me. Good job!

  • Cidney
    2019-03-19 05:34

    Classified as a romance by Bold Strokes, but you won't find any real romance or sex here. Sorry, but those elements are what I look forward to in lezfic romances... but I didn't find any real relationship here. Just a tedious study of military life. Just not my cup of tea, sorry. Look elsewhere if you are expecting romance.

  • Cheri
    2019-03-13 05:41

    I thought the second part of the book was strong and intense. Andy and I are discussing it on Episode 17 of Cocktail Hour, if you're interested in hearing what we thought. (

  • Lesbianfunworld Online
    2019-03-14 00:40

    I don't think I should have liked this as much as I did, but I did. It was a war thing and the writing was loose and strategic at the same time. And the ending was a bit confusing. Worthwhile and I gave it a rare 4 stars.

  • Elisa Rolle
    2019-03-08 06:39

    2011 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention (5* from at least 1 judge)

  • Evie
    2019-03-01 06:57