Virtual Book Tour: My Best Friend Athena

I’m happy to welcome award-winning novelist, screenwriter and playwright Dana Hammer. Today, Dana shares ten cool mythological figures and her new release, My Best Friend Athena.

Ten Ancient Greek Things I Might Incorporate in Sequels

My upcoming middle grade novel, My Best Friend Athena is about an eleven year old girl named Fanny who discovers that her best friend is the reincarnation of the Greek goddess, Athena. Fanny, Athena, and their other friend Gemma are all called to help when Athena accidentally transforms the school bully into a cockroach.

I’m not an expert on Greek Mythology by any stretch of the imagination, but in writing this book, I’ve learned a lot, and it’s been quite inspirational. Here are ten cool mythological figures I’d like to incorporate into sequels.


Polyphymnia (who will go by Polly in her modern incorporation), is one of the muses, specifically, she is the muse responsible for sacred song. My main character, Fanny, wants to be a singer when she grows up, and is extraordinarily talented. Polly will be a gospel singer who comes to town, and inspires Fanny to write her own music. There’s only one problem — Fanny isn’t religious, and her “sacred” songs aren’t at all sacred. Can Fanny be true to herself and her beliefs, while finding a way to make sacred music? Of course she can!


We all know about Narcissus, and the psychological disorder named after him, narcissism. Fanny and Athena are president and Vice President of their school’s math club — until an interloper named Narcissus joins and tries to take over and make the club all about him. The book will delve into how to deal with narcissists, in a kid-friendly way.

Eros (Cupid)

Eros will run amock in town, making people fall in love with all the wrong partners. But is it really love, if it was forced upon them by a reckless god? This book will explore the nature of consent, again, in a kid-friendly I way.


Ares is the son of Zeus and Hera, making him Athena’s brother. He is also the god of war. In this book, Ares runs military academy for troubled children, and after an accidental catastrophe, the girls will all be forced to enlist, despite their usually good behavior. Shenanigans ensue.


Hera was Zeus’ wife — an angry woman who was always being cheated on by Zeus. In modern times, she works for a non-profit that sets up battered women’s shelters. When she shows up on Zeus’ doorstep, needing a place to stay while she sets up a new shelter, sparks fly between Hera and Athena. Athena has never gotten along with her stepmother, and Hera likewise has issues of jealousy for Athena. This will be a twist on the “evil stepmother” trope. Hera isn’t evil, and Athena isn’t an oppressed Cinderella. Can the two work out their differences? Of course they can, with Fanny’s help!


It’s a three-headed dog!


At the end of the second book, which I have written but has not been published yet, Fanny’s mother is pregnant — and Dionysius (Zeus’ son) has jumped into the fetus’ body. Because of this, Zeus is going to take a weirdly intense interest in the baby’s upbringing. To provide magical nourishment for his son, Zeus will deliver a special milk to the baby — faun milk. The milk will have healing and growth powers. This is great for Fanny’s little brother, but soon, word gets out about this magical baby formula, and all the moms in town want some. Zeus is never one to turn down an opportunity, and soon, he’s running a faun milk business.

The money is rolling in…but what about the fauns? Are they ok? Do they even WANT to sell their milk? This book will explore exploitation of animals and natural resources, without being too graphic or scary.


Lotis is a Naiad, a nymph, and a water spirit. When she joins the swim team, she wins every competition. Is it fair for her to compete, when she has an obvious advantage? What will the girls decide to do about it?

The Lotus Eaters

The Lotus Eaters come to town, where they set up an “intentional community of likeminded people”. Soon, teachers, parents, and trusted adults all over the city are joining up, forgetting about their families, their jobs, and all of their responsibilities. Is the new community too good to be true? Of course it is, and Fanny and her friends are going to get to the bottom of it.


The story of the Minotaur is a deeply sad one. Born with a bull’s head and the body of a man, he was locked up in a labyrinth, where every nine years he was fed fourteen people, until he was killed by Theseus.

When a baby is born with a bull’s head and a human’s body, all the gods and goddesses know what they have to do — they have to kill the baby before he turns into a people-eating monster.

But Fanny is horrified by this. It’s not the baby’s fault that he has a bull’s head. And who says he’ll eat people when he grows up? Just don’t lock him in a labyrinth and feed him humans! Fanny decides that she will defy the gods — including her best friend — to save the Minotaur. This will be a book about acceptance of people who are different, and having the courage to defy traditions and ideas that no longer serve us.

These are just a few of the ideas I have for upcoming novels. So stay tuned! And I hope you enjoy My Best Friend Athena.


Fanny Fitzpatrick has the coolest best friend ever. Athena is smart, and pretty, and brave, and kind. Fanny loves her friend, but sometimes, she feels a little jealous of how perfect Athena is.

But even “perfect” girls make mistakes, and Athena makes a big one when she accidentally turns the school bully into a cockroach. He was picking on their friend Gemma and Athena lost her temper and her magic powers just slipped out right in front of Fanny.

Now Fanny knows that Athena isn’t an ordinary girl – she’s the reincarnation of a Greek goddess, powers and all – and now she needs Fanny and Gemma’s help to hunt down the bully-turned-cockroach and turn him back into a human boy.

Fanny doesn’t want to spend all her time looking for a cockroach. She’s got the Junior Miss Super Pretty Pageant to prepare for, if she can get over her stage fright. Besides, Athena’s Dad, Zeus, has forbidden the girls from meddling with any more cockroaches or magic, and Zeus is a god you don’t want to mess with.

Fanny has to make a choice. Should she pursue her pageant dreams, or risk Zeus’ wrath to find the cockroach-boy? What’s the right thing to do? And how do you hunt down a cockroach anyway?


Normally, when I arrive at school, I’m tired and cold and grumpy, but not today! Because today I’ve got the World’s Coolest Necklace, and everyone’s gonna notice it and give me compliments. It’s a “statement” necklace, and I got it at an old lady’s estate sale yesterday. I was shopping with my best friend, Athena, when I saw it. It was sitting on a dresser, with a bunch of other jewellery, but this necklace was the only one that caught my eye. It’s a large octopus, with jewel-covered tentacles, and two pearls for eyes. I tried it on, and it looked like the tentacles were reaching around my neck, trying to choke me. I’d never seen anything so cool in my life. It was $20, which was more than I had, but luckily Athena was there, and she bought it for me. Athena always has lots of money, because she’s a rich kid, but that’s NOT why I’m friends with her.

Anyway, she saw how sad I was that I couldn’t afford the necklace and she just bought it for me, probably because she has excellent taste and could see what a great investment it would be. She said it was “quirky” and “an interesting piece,” which I happen to know is code for “high fashion”.

My mom said it was “tacky garbage” but she doesn’t know about fashion. She mostly wears gym clothes, even when she’s not at the gym, and she never wears jewelry, except her wedding ring.

Author Bio and Links

Dana Hammer is a novelist, screenwriter and playwright. She has won over forty awards and honors for her writing, few of which generated income, all of which were deeply appreciated. She is not a cannibal, but she is the author of A Cannibals Guide to Fasting. Dana is also the author of middle grade fantasy My Best Friend Athena which was inspired by a desire to write something her 9 year old daughter could read.

Facebook | Goodreads | Website | Amazon Buy Link


Dana Hammer will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Find out more here.

Follow Dana on the rest of her Goddess Fish tour here.


5 responses to “Virtual Book Tour: My Best Friend Athena

  1. As the grandmother of a middle schooler and a former children’s librarian, I look forward to checking out this book. It sounds interesting and I’d like to see where this story and maybe series goes.

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