Beginning at the “other” camp and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second instalment of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophecy of Seven.
4.5 Stars (Rounded to 5)
I figured that it made no sense to give a full review for the second instalment of such a well-loved and consistent series, as you’ve all read or heard of it and there isn’t much new to say from its predecessor, ‘The Lost Hero’, of which I have a full review. Therefore, I’m going to recap my thoughts on this in bullet points as a bite-size review. A few things to note: firstly, I didn’t like this one quite as much as ‘The Lost Hero’, secondly, that it is still brilliant regardless, and third and finally, I am so excited to keep going with the series, yet I am holding off to prevent it from ending!
- Percy had returned! This was obviously a big hit for me and many fans of the series. As with its predecessor, this book rotates between three points of view, Percy, Frank and Hazel, and I loved getting Percy’s perspective again. He was still the loveable hero from ‘Percy Jackson and the Olympians’, but a bit more mature.
- As I said of ‘The Lost Hero’, I really do prefer the third person narrative – it feels so much more dramatic than the first person of Riordan’s earlier books.
- I loved all of the new characters. Frank has become my favourite of the new demigods (sorry, Leo) and Hazel, like Piper, was relatable. I loved the ‘mystery’ surrounding Hazel, and I liked her character development. Ella was another new addition, who filled a similar role as Tyson (the loveable non-human who inadvertently helps without realising their own importance) and I think she made a fab part of the team.
- On the relationship front, there were a lot of Annabeth/Percy ‘feels’ (I can’t quite believe I typed that, but it is the only way I can explain it!) Also, I adored Frank and Hazel together.
- There were a lot of flash-back scenes regarding Hazel and Frank, and although I know a few people don’t like the constant looking back, I found these glimpses into the past enjoyable, and a great way of building character without giving us information on a platter.
- SPOILER I was glad that Percy’s memories came back more gradually and earlier in the book than Jason’s did – it felt a bit more plausible this way, and I wouldn’t have believed it if Percy had spent any longer under the assumption that he was Roman rather than Greek, especially given the presence of Nico (who I am still not fond of, by the way). SPOILER ENDS
- I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I flew through it and didn’t want to put it down for anything. As always, Riordan pulled me in and I didn’t want to stop until the book was done, and I am now faced with the urge to jump straight into the next one.
- Camp Jupiter. I really, REALLY hated Camp Jupiter, and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t just my Camp Half-Blood withdrawals. I majorly disagreed with the way the Romans executed proceedings, Reyna was a terrible leader, and the whole system felt far too brutal for me to enjoy it.
- It is very confusing, all of the Gods having a Greek and a Roman name. I will get the hang of it eventually, but I reckon that I will for evermore just call them by their Greek names regardless.
- Octavian could be a great ‘minor villain’ kind of role, but I feel he was far too crazy for it to be effective. Also, I couldn’t invest in Reyna as a character. She felt very unbelievable (mainly due to her behaviour regarding the Camp, I think), and I could not connect to her, however hard I tried.
Would I recommend? – Obviously, it’s a ‘Heroes of Olympus’ book. If you haven’t read this series (or ‘Percy Jackson and the Olympians’) then I wholeheartedly ask you to pick it up. No, you aren’t too old for the middle grade series – I thought I would be – and I think it is one of those series that is worth reading whoever you are.