Review | The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan

The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus, #3)The demigods of Olympus are at it again. For the first time since the American Civil War, the Roman and Greek demigods have met. Despite an ancient rivalry that continues to plague the two Half-Blood Camps, the Romans and Greeks must set aside their differences and work together for a greater cause. Gaea, the Earth goddess continues to awaken from a deep sleep. Monsters are gathering behind Gaea in attempt to destroy all human kind and take over the Earth. Seven demigods: Annabeth, Percy, Leo, Piper, Jason, Hazel, and Frank set out on a quest that will take them to the ancient lands of Rome on the Argo II to follow the Mark of Athena and save another demigod from certain death.

I really enjoyed the two previous books in the Heroes of Olympus series: The Lost Hero and The Son of Neptune. The Mark of Athena was just okay for me. Riordan’s formula writing seemed to drag the story along a bit. I think one of the reasons that I liked Lost Hero and Son of Neptune so much was that despite the formulaic writing, so many new ideas and demigods were introduced that the story still seemed fresh to me. My husband suggested that maybe I didn’t like this book as much as the others because I needed a longer break between Riordan books. I did read the conclusion to his Kane Chronicles series six months ago, but I haven’t read a Heroes book for a year. So… I’m dubious about that being the reason why I wasn’t crazy about this book.

The one thing I did really like about The Mark of Athena was that it ended with a cliffhanger (literally). Riordan usually wraps his books up pretty nicely, even in the middle of a world takeover by monsters, but this book was different. If you’re a person who does not like cliffhangers, I recommend you wait until book four, The House of Hades, comes out next year (2013) and read three and four together. I think book four will pick up immediately where book three ends. Riordan has said that he intends for the series to be five books long. I hope that he’s able to breathe some new life into books four and five as I’ve been a long time fan of Riordan and his characters.

I listened to this book. The reader did a great job portraying different voices for the different characters, and I really thought it was well done.

Have you been reading this series? If so, I’d love to hear what you thought about Riordan’s latest installment and if you think ‘the mist’ is clouding my vision from liking this book as much as I wanted to.

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Overall Rating: 3 of 5 stars false1/2

Parent’s guide:

  • Sex: none, though there are references to boyfriend/girlfriend relationships, some light kissing between teenagers
  • Violence: lots of sword fighting and killing of monsters, some heroes are wounded
  • Language: none, some light name-calling/taunting of monsters and unlikable characters

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