I don't think very many authors can pull off what Rick Riordan does on a regular basis. This book, while seemingly a ploy to get people to read more aI don't think very many authors can pull off what Rick Riordan does on a regular basis. This book, while seemingly a ploy to get people to read more about his already popular characters, turns everything on its head by not being about what you've expected.
That's a convoluted way of saying that, like the Percy Jackson series, this book manages to turn conventions and expectations right on their heads. For a series set in the young adult market with magical youngsters and prophecies? Originality is a serious accomplishment.
The story begins with Jason (no last name yet) and his classmates ("troubled" kids again) fighting a set of storm elementals who steal the kids' guardian before Jason and two other demigods are extracted back to Camp Half-Blood by Annabeth and some of the other campers on pegasus-back.
It's been a while since I finished The Last Olympian, but enough of the story stayed with me that I was able to really understand the turmoil these guys had been thrown into. But Jason, amnesiac-with-a-past, and the other two demigods are completely awesome and I liked them enough that I was willing to go along with whatever was happening.
While the truth of Jason's past isn't officially revealed until pretty late in the book, it is relatively easy to guess what's going on. And in this I must commend Mr. Riordan. After the crazy world-building and obvious love of the original myths shown in the Percy Jackson books, to add to the mythos is kind of awe-inspiring.
The characters always manage to surprise me with how fleshed out they are. And of course they all have their problems (compounded by the whole half-immortal craziness) but they still manage to come across as kids thrown in a little over their heads. I didn't ever want to slap any of them over the head for being nonsensical - a great accomplishment for a young adult novel.
A great blend of the highly unexpected, laugh-out-loud funny bits, and the traditional, The Lost Hero is a rollicking good time. I am really looking forward to the next book. ...more
My best friend's cousin lent me this book because she had heard through the grapevine that I liked "historical romances." With this knowledge at the fMy best friend's cousin lent me this book because she had heard through the grapevine that I liked "historical romances." With this knowledge at the forefront of my mind, I can't quite figure out why I was lent the book in the first place since it is very far from a historical romance in both tone and subject matter.
Sarah's Key takes the story of one little girl's tragedy during the French round-up of its Jews in WWII and has it parallel that of the woman who is consumed with telling her story. While I can appreciate the stylistic device and understand why, ultimately, it was chosen, I still don't quite get why the author decided that this was the way to go. From the very beginning Sarah's story, told in the third person with very little identification of the characters save for vague pronouns, is the more visceral and interesting of the two. Perhaps it is my age, but I found that I couldn't relate to the modern-day journalist whose life is turned upside down by the revelations being made as she figures out Sarah's story.
Her husband, painted by the protagonist as a man who is just having an off day, comes across as boorish, rude, and downright abusive. He may never hit her, but his constant verbal assault does nothing to elevate their relationship.
As Sarah's story develops, the protagonist's seems to just stall until she is moving from landmark to landmark solely, it seems, to progress Sarah's story. And then, when Sarah's story finally reaches its high-point, the author chose to have it end. We get the end of her life in bits and pieces, a wholly unsatisfying conclusion.
Sarah's story is a lot more impactful and interesting and right when we want to be in her mind, knowing what it is she is dealing with, we are wrenched out never to return. I spent the rest of the book hoping we would get back to her and being frustrated with the protagonist's inaction.