(Real Rating: 2.5/5)
This is a book that I have been wanting to read for a while now. Every time I would pass by it at a library or a bookstore I would tell myself to pick it up. Finally, I did. And you know what, I was very disappointed by it. In no way did this live up to my expectations.
Before I start let me just say that I am totally biased. Percy Jackson is one of my favorite male characters of all time and the world in which he lives, filled with Greek gods and monsters, is by far one of my favorite to read about. That said, I did not enjoy the fact the Percy Jackson does not appear once in this novel. For that alone I think my enjoyment of this book diminished. Not that Jason didn’t have his moments, he just wasn’t Percy, and will never even come close to being.
That said, let’s move on.
In Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Percy discovered he was the son of Poseidon, became a powerful demigod, completed a major prophecy, and saved the world. This book takes place a couple of months after those events. Here, Percy is missing and in his place, appears a guy named Jason with absolutely no memory of who he is. Apparently, he is the son of Zeus (or is he), he speaks Latin (instead of Greek), and is supposed to take part in yet another grand prophecy to save humanity. With the help of newcomers Leo and Piper, Jason must battle gods and monsters, travel across the country, and save the day. Basically, all the things we love about the original series, without the original characters. This probably is where the bias comes in. The original story just holds such a large place in my heart that this story however great could never hope to compare.
Now, I know that the original characters show up in later books. I know that the sequel, Son of Neptune, is all about Percy and where he went missing. I know all of this. I just didn’t like it. And no, it’s not because I am afraid of change or any of that, I just don’t think that these new characters were as appealing as the original trio. I didn’t feel for them the way I did for Percy and his friends. Their adventures weren’t as engaging, despite being every bit as action packed and dangerous.
The problem is that these new guys were kind of bland. Jason and Piper were moody all the time, bordering on annoying. They weren’t engaging the way that Percy and Annabeth were. Honestly, they were kind of boring. They were also, to top it off, a bunch of special snowflakes who couldn’t figure anything out by themselves. They had none of Percy’s charm and wit and sarcasm and hilarious narration. Admittedly, Leo was pretty awesome, but he alone could not save the rest of the cast for me.
This entire first book fell flat for me. I was not a huge fan it. In fact, I put it down for a few days and did not feel any hurry to pick it back up. If it weren’t for Leo, Rick Riordan’s writing, and the fact that I loved the original Percy Jackson series, I might had have rated it just the two stars.
The mystery of Jason’s memory and the sudden appearance of the Roman version of the gods did not keep me guessing the way it should have. In the book’s defense, this is because I already knew the gist of what was happening so it was easy for me to guess everything fairly quickly. But even then, I don’t think I cared all that much. I just wanted Percy to be found, and sadly, the only way to do that was to figure out Jason’s past.
The rest of the plot, despite its usual run in with gods and monsters and all that stuff I love, was dulled by the characters. To be honest, I think that most of the book’s problems come from the lack of Percy.
All in all, I will continue this series. I must find out what has happened to Percy, but I don’t know when that will be. It didn’t leave me hungry for more the way the PJO did. The fact that this first book alone was 557 pages doesn’t encourage me either. But, we shall see.
Have you guys read this book, or the others in this series? What did you think of it? Does Jason get better than this? Please let me know in the comments, I love seeing what you guys have to say!