The third installment of The Heroes of Olympus is in the house! Before I continue, my review of the second book can be found here. I have to admit, as I was holding the book in my hands, turning the first page and seeing the first chapter, I just couldn’t contain my excitement. Especially with the book cover illustration, I just need to find out everything immediately.
Here’s the plot description of the book:
Annabeth is terrified. Just when she’s about to be reunited with Percy—after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera—it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. As Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon figurehead, Leo’s fantastical creation doesn’t appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace.
And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving demand: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find—and close—the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?
Annabeth’s biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he’s now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader, but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.
Narrated by four different demigods, The Mark of Athena is an unforgettable journey across land and sea to Rome, where important discoveries, surprising sacrifices, and unspeakable horrors await. Climb aboard the Argo II, if you dare….
At the beginning of the story, readers will be eager to find out if the Greek and Roman demigods decide to work together as a team in order to defeat Gaea. It’s kind of hard to imagine that two opposing camps/teams, which are at heated conflict with each other for centuries, will join forces. As I was reading through their process of negotiation, I have actually slowly taken a liking to the Roman demigods, like Reyna. On the other hand, some just makes me feel like I want to slap them, like Octavian. Either way, a success or not, it’s for you to find out.
Moving on, I’m glad that this book focuses more a bit on Annabeth as well as their minor quest that will eventually connect to their big prophecy. The Mark of Athena is written in four alternating point of views of Annabeth, Leo, Piper, and Percy and each point of view somehow contains their mini adventures of whoever they’re with that leads to the Mark of Athena. With that said, readers will be taking a wild adventure with the characters as they meet new minor gods and goddesses and Gaea’s minions and followers. On the one hand, it’s nice to be introduced to new gods and know their abilities. On the other hand, I just have poor memory remembering all of them. There are some names and incidents mentioned that I’ve forgotten which I have to recall from the previous books, but this doesn’t hinder me from enjoying the book.
Overall, I’m massively impressed by how Rick Riordan incorporates the modern aspects of life in the book. The way he mixes it with Greek and Roman mythology naturally flows into the story rather than forced. Who knew that the mythical creatures and the gods/goddesses are also taking part in the technological advancements of the society? The only downside of the book is that there are not much action-packed scenes as compared to the first two books. However, the book still offers informative details in order for the story to move on to the next part.
I have truly enjoyed the book. We get to see more abilities of the demigods, especially Leo, Piper, and Annabeth. Plus, readers will also be surprised by how connected Leo and Hazel’s lives are in actuality. I must say, the story keeps me interested until the end. Rick Riordan surely knows how to make a good cliffhanger. The story ends well with closure, but it also pushes the readers to look forward to the next book. What will be in store for the seven chosen demigods and what will be the purpose of the Mark of Athena to the prophecy? I guess we’re about to find out next year in his fourth book, The House of Hades. Signing off to mark my calendar!