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The Mark of Athena hit bookshelves early last week. We’ve read it from cover to cover and we’re here to share the good, the bad, and the monstrous.

Rick Riordan doesn’t disappoint with his latest installment in the Heroes of Olympus series. His trademark humor is spot on, causing more than one real-life LOL. All the silly monsters and clever lines that we fell in love with when we read The Lightning Thief are new, improved, and back with a vengeance. We’ve got fresh retorts and the latest Greek god-inspired spoofs (our favorite one being, “So you think you can weave better than a goddess?”), and each one packs a serious punch.

The Mark of Athena sees representatives of the two camps – Half-Blood and Jupiter – together in the same place, but not necessarily united under the same flag. Seven demigods have to venture forth on the quest of a lifetime, but the hardest part might prove to be working together. They must fly on the Argo II, the Greek trireme adorned with the head of our favorite dragon Festus, cross the United States, traverse the ocean, and end up in Rome – one of the most dangerous places in the world for demigods. (Go figure, right?)

The story is told from four different points of view: Piper, Leo, Percy, and Annabeth. Stepping back into Percy’s shoes always feels like soaking in a nice, clean, freshwater river after a particularly arduous day at Camp Half-Blood. Leo is also a personal favorite, and his witty retorts and unique perspectives don’t go unappreciated. Even hopping into Piper’s brain for a while feels familiar and secure. But this truly is Annabeth’s story (hence the title of the book) and we can’t help but say: finally!

On the whole, the book was another success as far as we’re concerned. The funny moments weigh equally with the emotional bits, and the suspense keeps you turning pages as if the fate of the world is resting on your back (or maybe that was just Atlas wanting a quick break). The most exciting part had to be when the demigods finally made it to Rome. Despite the fact that they knew what they had to face there, the crew of the Argo II and the readers alike take a moment to appreciate finally stepping foot in one of the birthplaces of all those legends.

The book slows down periodically to take note of everyone’s situation. There are a lot of characters aboard the ship, and taking stock of what each one is thinking or doing can become tiresome. This book is as much about relationships as it is about finding a way to stop Gaea, and while that’s all fine and dandy, sometimes we (as in this writer in particular) just wants to see some ancient mythological monster’s head flying instead of hearing about how everyone feels about everyone else.

Gone are the days of the 12-year-old boy who just found out his father was Poseidon. (Can we just take a moment here as well to say that we really miss those snarky chapter titles from the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series?) Percy is almost 17 and the tone of the book reflects this. The various couples find themselves alone more often and we sense that our favorite characters are almost fully-fledged adults. The humor is sometimes in contrast to this and doesn’t fit as well with the story as when our characters were pre-teens. On the other hand, we can’t say we didn’t laugh when a giant with an affinity for ballet popped up in a blue tutu and insisted on performing a pirouette with every attack.

The novel on a whole answered a lot of questions, although we probably have just as many new ones for the following book. But these set us up perfectly for the next installment as well: we know the goal (to save the world…again), but it’s an impossible task under an impossible deadline. It’s nothing new for our heroes, but we wouldn’t want it any other way.

Oh, and the ending? Well, we’re obviously not going to give that away. But don’t say we didn’t warn you.

How did you like ‘The Mark of Athena’?

  • https://twitter.com/#!/HP4eva121995 Ally

    I really enjoyed Mark of Athena but the cliffhanger is KILLING me!! I don’t wanna wait a year for Book 4.

  • Hahaha

    That one page was more romantic and devastating than all of Twilight combined.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jeremy.lasdulce Jeremy Las Dulce

      yeah that one page broke the hearts of millions of fans everywhere

    • http://twitter.com/inkasrain Michal

      So amazingly true. It was beautifully done.

  • http://twitter.com/taylie27 Taylore Thompson

    Did anyone else hate the fact that Riordan gave us a literal cliff-hanger at the end

    • http://twitter.com/JackalakinS Jack Stallard

      Try reading the Game of Thrones books. You will hate cliffhangers ten times what you do now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jeremy.lasdulce Jeremy Las Dulce

    Oh man the book was amazing I couldn’t put it down I’ve been reading the Percy books since I was 12 and it’s really cool to see them mature with us over the years and I’m a romantic at heart so I was beyond excited to see the Percabeth reunion and although the ending was extremely sweet and romantic and I loved it that didn’t stop me from tearing up when I got to the end another great (this time literal cliff hanger) and now I have to wait another year for book 4 :(

  • sof

    yesterday after finishing my chemistry midterm and waiting to be dismissed i started doodling on the back of my test paper. it turned into a sketch of the ending of MoA and then I started crying

  • Hermione Annabeth Everdeen

    I loved it. I felt it could have been funnier, though, and I have to say I do miss those chapter titles (and Percy’s thoughts). I’ve been rereading the original Percy Jackson series and I have to say I like them better. MoA was still AMAZING though!!!!!!

  • Tiffanie Jump

    It was really good. It was better and more heart pounding then the last. I don’t want to wait a year to find out what happens to Percy and Annabeth


    BEST BOOK EVER!!!!!!

  • kate

    i loved it and now i am reading it for the second time. I am absolutely loving percy and annabeth. The characters are all brilliant

  • htytryjn

    wrong atlas would not need a break “holding the world on his back” as he he holds the SKY on his back

  • Pluto alien

    I miss the chapter titles so much, it was what iwas looking forward to in. Heros of Olympus.(three old ladies knit the socks of death) still getting over the shock of the ending though

  • someone else

    Didn’t someone say that Calypso will Appear in this book? But why none are found?

  • http://twitter.com/ZaynCalderone Zayn ┼ ARTPOP

    That cliffhanger … I. Cried. Waiting for The House Of Hades is going, to kill me.

    Percabeth ♥

  • lolz?

    what page are we talking about???

  • cinna

    The ending was very sad but he leaves you hanging and wondering what happens next!!!

  • twood

    i personally loved it and am waiting for the house of hades to come out

  • percyjacksonlover

    I feel like the book could have been better during the sailing to rome part and did anyone think the gods were being a bit of an ass during the book?not to mention team percy or team jason?(team percy) plus whos the better couple piper an jason,percy an anabeth. frank an hazel or leo an hazel. godess bellona or godess athena? artemis athena or aphrodite? anabeth piper or rachel?

  • Karina

    I really loved the book, And that end… I almost cried!

    Now I’m just imagining how Riordan felt when he wronte that, like “let’s see how strong my fans’ hearts are”

    I just wish Octuber could come faster…

  • REyeP15

    Was it just me or did anyone else hate how Percy was worring about drowning and how weak he seemed in comparison to the fight with Kronos. Also hate how riordan gave himself an out with the curse of Achilles to make percy seem weaker in the last book. The cliff hanger ending was good though.

  • Santana Lopez

    I don’t like Piper’s pov.People always think that she isn’t a typical daughter of Aphrodite,but the way she gush over Jason makes me think of her mom.Ugh.

  • Santana Lopez

    Also,I love reading Percy Jackson.I love reading series,because I can see the character grow up both mentally and physically.

  • Vampirevigilante13

    I actually hated Otis’s ballet costume. There’s a time for humor and there’s a time for seriousness. That was time for seriousness. I need to to be able take my villains seriously, especially the final villain. Other than that the book was excellent

  • Darcy Styles

    I want to know what the season in which this book takes place???????

  • Quick

    I thought this book was a pain to keep reading. There were times I didn’t even think Riordan was taking it completely seriously himself. The jokes fell flat for me and the dialogue was tacky. This felt like a miss for who I usually find a pretty great author

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