The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

The Son of Neptune is the second volume in the Heroes of Olympus series, In the novel, someone transports Percy from his home Camp Half-Blood in New York to Camp Jupiter in Southern California. He ends up there with no memory except one name, Annabeth.

On his way to Camp Jupiter, he is chased by the gorgons and observes something extremely odd. He observed that when he killed them they would just reform and come back and attack him which was not possible. 

He embarks on a quest to make sure monsters stay dead when they are killed with his new friends, Frank and Hazel. He goes to the north meeting foes and friends. He completes his quest and arrives at Camp Jupiter just in time to aid them at their time of greatest need, during a battle for survival. He regains his memory and meets his own friends from his original camp to lead an even larger quest to save the gods.

I highly recommend this book because it leads to an even bigger finale and the book along with many others in the series   Also, this is a novel that really makes you want to keep reading until the book is over. I read this novel in a very short time because i was really hooked into the story.

-Badrish A.

The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library. It can also be downloaded for free from Overdrive.

Lore by Alexandra Bracken

Melora “Lore” Perseous is done with the Agon and it’s bloody aftermath. Years ago, after her family was killed, Lore refused to take part in the Agon, which instructs the gods to become mortals for a week, allowing any mortal hunter to kill a god and recieve their power, who then becomes the leader of their ancestral family. After years of this, the only original gods that remain are Athena, Artemis, Apollo, and Dionysus. During a street fight, which is how Lore makes her money, a familiar face from her childhood shows up, warning her of danger. Lore shrugs it off and returns home, only to find a deathly injured Athena at her doorstep. With no other choice, Melora is dragged back into the ruthless world of Gods and Goddesses, to stop a power hungry new god with ambitious plans for the world.

I loved ‘Lore’ and enjoyed reading it, although I admit that it can be a bit confusing if you’re not a bit familiar with Greek Mythology. Melora’s perseverance and bravery is definitely to be admired. With the different characters and personalities, the author makes it hard to find any boring part. Athena, who’s a frightening and self-assured goddess, Castor, Lore’s childhood friend who will do anything to keep her safe, Van, an uptight and serious young man, has one goal: keep Castor safe. Finally, Miles, Lore’s friend who knows nothing of the Agon but is determined to help. Alexandra Bracken’s ‘Lore’ seems almost reminiscent of ‘The Hunger Games’ with it’s bloody tournament, brave and loyal protagonist, and male counterpart, who’s kind and devoted. I highly recommend ‘Lore’, for those who enjoy Greek Mythology, ‘The Hunger Games’, fantasy, and action with a bit of slow-burn romance.

-Kelsie W.

Lore by Alexandra Bracken is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library.

Book Review: Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods

Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods is a book based on the 12 Olympian gods that thoroughly goes through each of their individual backgrounds, stories, and some funny moments.

The book is explained by Percy Jackson, a modern-day demigod, which basically means that one of his parents is a god and the other one is mortal. They can see the gods and understand them compared to regular mortals. Demigods are also prone to monsters that hunt demigods specifically and have to be trained in combat to stay alive.

This book is written with a flair of Percy’s own touch, a hint of sarcasm, and a touch of a personalized view of each of the gods. From Athena to Poseidon, this book covers all the Olympians plus some bonus gods including Persephone, Hades, and Hestia.

This book explains the beginnings in the Greek mythology from Ouranos and Gaea, to the titans, to the 12 Olympians. It also includes some special artwork of some of the gods like Demeter, Hades and Persephone, Poseidon, Zeus, Athena, Hephaestus and Ares, Apollo, and Dionysus.

I would really recommend this to anyone who is interested in Greek mythology. I would even highly recommend it to someone who is either unfamiliar with Greek mythology or to someone who doesn’t have any information on Greek mythology.

-Badrish A.

Peter Jackson’s Greek Gods by Rick Riordan is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library. It can also be downloaded for free from Overdrive.

The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

Most teens are familiar with Odysseus, the ancient Greek myth spread orally and eventually written down to be read by us in the future. The epic depicts a man on his years-long journey home from the Trojan War, battling gods and monsters alike under the protection of Athena. As the legend goes, Odysseus returns home to find his dining hall filled to the brim with ravenous suitors, after his wife Penelope. Beating the suitors in a contest, he regains control of the castle, enlisting his son to kill the men and hang 12 maids who favored them for their company. Thus, the story is complete, and Odysseus and Penelope spend their remaining days together. Or so we thought…

The Penelopiad tells the story from Penelope’s point of view, the persevering and cunning wife who waits for Odysseus to return despite the world giving up on him. Atwood begins the story at the beginning of her life, following her through the myth as we know it. Told through Penelope in Hades (the afterlife underworld of the Greek mythos), perspective flips from recalling her time in the land of the living to her interactions with the same characters after death. The author also incorporates the story of the 12 hanged maids as a chorus, chanting intermittent, heart-wrenching chapters in verse. The short novel is timeless, using its afterlife setting as grounds for various anachronisms and interwoven cultural elements.

Atwood’s retelling of the popular myth describes an ancient world made for men from a powerful woman’s perspective, one has rarely seen in ancient Greek literature. While a 21st century adaptation, it stands as an important vision of the lives of women during a time where they were given no power or say in what happened in their lives. Always the sidekicks, romantic interests, and victims, The Penelopiad gives us a chance to finally imagine what their story could have been told with the ancient myth so long ago.

Having read the book in three days, I found myself enthralled by the perspective Penelope and the maids bring to the conversation and recommend it to any reader fascinated by Greek epics beyond the mandatory school reading. Told by a remarkably influential author, The Penelopiad brings Greek women’s stories to life in dramatic and humorous ways.

– Bailey L.

The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library.

Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

According to Greek mythology, Athens paid Crete seven virgins every nine years. The children were put into the Minos maze and, no matter how they walked, they died of thirst or were eaten by Minotaur, the monster of the labyrinth. Joyce associated this myth with Finnegans Wake. Finnegans Wake is a maze like the Minos Maze. Joyce created the maze with his own rules, a game he played his own way, in which he no longer had to obey other people’s rules, nor care about their recognition or participation. Just as the fate of children lurks in the Minos labyrinth, so the Finnega’s Wake contains a prediction of the fate of mankind that others may not understand, but will happen as predicted. From this perspective, Finnegans Wake is both a Minos labyrinth and an Eden created by Joyce himself, and also a prophecy about the fate of mankind.

In fact, In Joyce’s mind, Finnegans Wake was a work on a level with the Bible and other human sacred texts that readers must read with awe and shame. Finnegans Wake talks about a letter that the hen is constantly digging. The hen searched all the winding world for a very large piece of writing paper just as the clock struck twelve. The sentence, if read in Joyce’s way of making puns, could also be interpreted as the hen searching through all the complicated polysemous words at the stroke of twelve, looking for a piece of writing paper as big as God. Joyce also makes repeated references to the 6th or 9th century Irish holy book, The Great Book of Gaelic, and the hen digs the letter in Finnegans Wake is a stylistic parody of The Great Book of Gaelic. Historically, The Great Book of Gaelic had been buried like the letter dug up by the hen to protect it from the invading Danes, and centuries later it had been excavated and worn like a letter.

The letter, The Great Book of Gaelic, and Finnegans Wake are the same thing in Joyce’s mind, and if the hen is looking for the letter in a winding world, the reader is looking for clues to the Wake in Joyce’s labyrinth of complex and polysemous words. If the ragged book of The Great Book of Gaelic requires the reverence and patience of posterity, Finnegans Wake demands that its readers devote their lives to a book written, albeit by a contemporary writer. Most notably, Joyce actually regarded his Finnegans Wake as the same holy book as The Great Book of Gaelic. It’s as sacred and profound as The Great Book of Gaelic, and the process of reading it is the same as the process of interpreting The Great Book of Gaelic, the process of interpreting scripture. In this way the reader can understand why Joyce employs such obscure language in Finnegans Wake: Finnegans Wake is Joyce’s use of enigmatic language and content to reveal the mysteries of human destiny like The Great Book of Gaelic.

Siren Song by Anne Ursu

The “Siren Song” in the Cronus Chronicles Series is a very enticing book. It does have an unusual main character that still worries about things like popularity and looks and friends still has a legal of uniqueness to herself. The supporting character has a bit of a smaller part in this book than in the first book. The difference in the “development” of the main character is that she has a crush in this new book.

The book is mostly based on the Greek mythology but puts the gods in a negative light of being indifferent to the human race, and are the main obstacle standing in the way of the main character. In relation to the book before it I would say they hold the same weight in being entertaining but perhaps the first one has a stronger plot. Some books might want if you enjoy this book is Percy Jackson, The Oracles Of The Delphi Keep and Keeper of the Lost Cities. The book also had some very funny instances or scenes, so this made the book funny and gave it a comical ring to it all. Through every page that you turn this book becomes more enjoyable and excited, I for sure recommend the Sirens Song.

-Tonantzin L.

Demigods and Magicians by Rick Riordan

This is another amazing book by Rick Riordan!  Rick Riordan writes about many different mythologies such as Greek, Roman, Norse, and Egyptian. This books features Percy and Annabeth, a couple who are involved with Greek mythology and Sadie and Carter Kane, siblings who are involved in Egyptian mythology.  This isn’t a conventional book in that it is composed of three short stories and a sneak peek of one of his books about Norse mythology, The Hidden Oracle. 

The first story is about Percy and Carter meeting and their unusual fight against an enormous petsuchos, the gigantic crocodile son of the Egyptian crocodile god Sobek. The boys fought and were confused when they first meet as they figured out that more than just one mythology was real. They defeated the monster but felt as though they’d opened a door that wouldn’t be closed.

In the second story, Annabeth meets Sadie and they join forces to stop the past, present, and future from joining together so the Egyptian god of the Underworld, Serapis, can rise.  Annabeth eliminates the god’s future so he can’t exist anymore.  The girls exchange cell phone numbers and agree to contact each other only in emergencies.

In the third story, Percy, Annabeth, Carter, and Sadie all fight a long battle against Setne, an Egyptian magician who came back from the dead to try to mix Greek and Egyptian powers to try to turn himself into a god. After the four defeat him, they decide to keep everything to themselves and stay in contact.

I loved reading the sneak peek because it interested me enough to go check out the full book, which I loved.  There are more books in the series and it’s a great read.

All in all I enjoyed this book a lot.  It answers those questions you sometimes think about, like ‘what would happen if the characters in my two favorite book series met?’  I definitely recommend this book; although it helps to read the series about Percy and Annabeth and the series about Sadie and Carter beforehand because they help you understand the characters and their story.

– Kaitlyn S.

Demigods & Magicians by Rick Riordan is available at the Mission Viejo Library

The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan

The most modest, kind-hearted, expert haiku poet of a god- yes, I am talking about the one and only Apollo! Honestly, who doesn’t love him?

Well it looks as if Zeus isn’t particularly fond of him- because, well you probably wouldn’t throw someone you’re fond of off of Olympus and strip them of their godly powers.

Apollo finds himself in a repulsive garbage bin in a New York alley when he awakes in the form of the utterly powerless, weak, and completely mortal Lester Papadopoulos. Because he is so accustomed to his godly privileges and reverent treatment, being sent to Earth with absolutely no powers hits Apollo pretty hard. Quite literally:

“Hoodlums punch my my face,

I would smite them if I could,

Mortality blows.”

-Apollo (The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle Ch. 1, Rick Riordan)


Although this is a new series, it’s also, in a way, a continuation of Percy Jackson and the Heroes of Olympus. It’s set in the same world, and some questions that were left unanswered in The Blood of Olympus (the last book in The Heroes of Olympus series) are finally explained. I won’t specify which ones so as not to spoil anything, but I will say that I was very happy that I finally found out what happened (I died after I read The Blood of Olympus because I didn’t think there would be any more books). Additionally, some characters from The Heroes of Olympus series are represented in this book, so I was also happy about that. But of course, new and lovable (and some not so lovable) characters are introduced in this series.

I was absolutely ecstatic when I heard that this book was coming out and was not, in any way whatsoever, disappointed when I was finally able to read it. Apollo has always been one of my favorite gods but, after reading this book, I can confidently say that he is my favorite.

I love how Rick Riordan portrays Apollo and brings out so much personality and humor. The book is narrated by Apollo, and it really feels like it’s the god narrating because of the language Rick uses in this book. Apollo is very eloquent (most of the time), and speaks in a different manner than we do today in modern society.

Greek and Roman mythology has always interested me, and so has the history from these cultures, as the two are so closely related. I really admire how much historical content Rick is able to weave in to the story, along with the mythological and fictional aspects.

If you’ve read The Heroes of Olympus series, I definitely recommend this book (the second one is also out: The Dark Prophecy). Although, if you haven’t finished that series yet, I’d wait until you finish reading it because this book will probably spoil something.

This is definitely one of my favorite series, and I can’t wait until the third one comes out!

-Elina T.

The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library.