Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Lost Hero

Riordan, Rick. The Lost Hero.
Nominated for the Cybils by Kate.

I admit it; in order to read this, I had to deny a student. Once it went out, it would never be back in the library long enough for me to read it. I will personally deliver it this morning! There may be spoilers here, so don't continue reading if you don't want to know!

Percy Jackson is still missing, and Annabeth is going in search of him. First, however, three new children of the gods show up at Camp Half-Blood. Leo is the son of Hephaestus who also has the ability to withstand fire. He is still grieving the death of his mortal mother, has the ability to fix just about anything mechanical, and is attracted to girls who don't like him. Piper, whose mortal father is a movie star, is the daughter of Aphrodite, which explains how she was able to talk people into giving her things (which were then assumed to be stolen). Lastly, we have Jason, who has lost all of his memories but is the son of Zeus in his Roman incarnation as Jupiter, and as such, is in the greatest peril of them all. After a prophecy is revealed, the three form a team and take off across the US and Canada, meeting Medea, King Midas, and others in their quest to rescue Hera, who has been captured as part of an uprising that can only be squelched by connecting with the camp of the Roman gods, where they believe Percy might be.

Strengths: Riordan must be the most dedicated writer alive-- he travels to meet his fans and can keep churning out books. The use of Greek and Roman mythology is still fascinating, and the writing is fun. Can you say "chain-mail muu muu" without laughing? This will be hugely popular, and was a clever way to continue the story without making us tired of Percy.

Weaknesses: A bit formulaic. The characters strongly echoed those from the previous book, and the snort-through-my-nose-funny moments were fewer and further between.

Also, there is some Latin that may be incorrect, but I tried not to look at it because I really didn't want to know how wrong it was. Sigh. What have we said, people? Any author who tries to put Latin into a YA book needs to check with me first! I haven't taught Latin in 18 years, but if I can tell it's wrong, it must be really wrong!


JenStorySnoop said...

I'm in the middle of this book right now. I love Rick Riordan but I think this series will appeal most to those who have not read the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (or maybe those who can't get enough of Percy, even after five books!). For those who have read the previous series, the old formula is a bit too familiar in this one.

Iron Guy Carl said...

There SHOULD be a pin for this book, just as you said. I read the Strengths and Weaknesses part of your review and skipped the rest because I have TLH at home and haven't gotten to it yet. (must finish Erec Rex first)Our daughter, who vieswith me for being Charlotte's #1 Percy Jackson fan, read it right away and loved it.
I think one reason Rick Riordan is so loyal to his fans is because they made him what he is now. His books didn't get a lot of publicity but they became popular through word of mouth. He said that once he was at a bookstore to sign copies of The Lightning Thief and no one paid attention to him--except for one person who asked him where the restroom was! But once kids started the buzz,he became popular. No wonder he does so much for his fans!

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