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Literature / Nice Shot, Cupid!

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Nice Shot, Cupid! is Book IV in Kate McMullan's Myth-O-Mania series, published in 2002. Hades tells the story of how the awkward teenage god Cupid found love with the mortal princess Psyche, despite the jealousy his mother, Aphrodite, holds towards her popularity.

This book provides examples of:

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  • Accidental Misnaming: Cupid refers to Psyche as, "Psycho", until he falls in love with her.
  • Adaptational Ugliness: Cupid meets Psyche during his awkward adolescent phase, even though Zeus' version of their story describes Cupid as a hunk.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Psyche manages to remain attractive even while performing Aphrodite's grueling Engagement Challenge.
  • Characterization Marches On: Cupid claims in Phone Home, Persephone! that he'd be "out of a job" if he ever fired arrows that make their targets permanently fall in love, only to create such arrows in between that book and this one.
  • Determinator: Psyche, big time. She spends years completing endless lists of near-impossible tasks just for the chance to see Cupid again. And unlike other heroes, she does most of them without Hades' help.
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  • Driven by Envy: Aphrodite and Psyche's sisters jealously torment Dude Magnet Psyche. After Cupid and Hades convince Zeus to turn Psyche immortal, so she could marry Cupid, Aphrodite objects until Psyche promises not to steal the title of "goddess of beauty" from her.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: Psyche earns immortality and a chance to marry Cupid after years of completing a series of endless tasks.
  • Engagement Challenge: Aphrodite gives Psyche an ever-increasing list of tasks that she has to complete before she'll allow Psyche to see Cupid again.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Nice Shot, Cupid! has a non-malicious instance. To boost Cupid's self-confidence in his gawky appearance, Hades shoots him with one of his own arrows, making Cupid fall in love with his own reflection.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: The second list of tasks Aphrodite assigns for Psyche consists of nine commands following the format, "Bring me X item (written in both Gratuitous Italian and English) from Y faraway place to help me tend to Cupid", followed by, "Bring me una tazz, a cup, of sea foam from the ocean waves that break on the shores of Cythera, just because I said so."
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  • Love at First Sight: Cupid admits feeling this for Psyche, even without accidentally piercing himself with his arrow (as happens in some versions of their myth, including the one in the back of the Stone Arch edition of this book).
  • My Beloved Smother: Aphrodite spoils the teenage Cupid, and fusses over his physical appearance.
  • Sickeningly Sweethearts: Hades encounters a few, including Orpheus and Eurydice, shortly before he finds Cupid in the middle of "target practice". Later, Hades gives Cupid and Psyche some face-to-face alone time, by using some stolen orange-tipped arrows to make everyone else on the premises fall in love with each other.
  • The Voice: Cupid initially hides behind a curtain while talking to Psyche, so she calls him this until she discovers his identity.
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