The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan
I can’t remember when exactly I started reading the Percy Jackson books but I loved them. I’m a huge nerd and really love ancient Greece (almost as much as I love ancient Rome), I loved the first person narrative and all the excellent creatures and characters. I’ve never been a twelve year old boy with dyslexia but I imagine Percy Jackson is exactly right. I loved that he was dyslexic too – it’s a pretty big issue right now and kids should have literature that reflects their experience.
So I was actually kind of hesitant to pick up the Lost Hero because sequel series are almost never as good as the first one. But I did and it was awesome. Probably not quite as good as Percy Jackson but close.
When I started it the thing I missed the most was the first person. I missed the immediacy and humour of Percy Jackson’s internal narrative. By the end of the first page of The Lightening Thief I already loved Percy. But with the third person narrative it took a lot longer for me to really warm to the characters. I suppose it’s worth noting that a lot longer turned out to be the end of the first chapter.
The Lost Hero is for kids a little bit older than the Lightening Thief, presumably because everyone who loved the Lightening Thief is a little older now too. I mean, it’s not Harry Potter, going to an intensely dark place at the end of it all but still the narrative is a bit more complicated. It also makes the third person really necessary or the whole book would just be one character after the other explaining their perspectives. If there’s one thing I learned from Lord of the Rings it’s that while it might seem like a good idea to have all your main characters sitting around a table and talking you through everything that has every happened or ever could happen, no one really likes to read it.
Along with a fast plot and laugh out loud moments that confused the people around me I think I loved the characters the most. Jason, probably a little less then Leo and Piper just because he’s the hero and most of his hero traits are things like bravery, honesty, loyalty, things like that. I am super excited to learn his story though. As usual it is the semi-sidekicks that really won my heart. I loved Leo – probably because I related to him the most. Characters that use sarcasm and jokes to hide their insecurities? Sounds like nobody I know. I also really liked Piper. At first I wasn’t sure about her. Being described as beautiful, even if it’s a plot point because you’re a daughter of goddess, doesn’t usually attract me to a female character, particularly if that’s the only real detail we get. Then everything she thinks, says or does for the next little while seems to be about her boyfriend somehow. But she really grew into her identity and that was awesome. I loved that she had a fairly feminine power but she was still able to kick… butt when necessary. Her development was really genuine. Even the parts with her deity parent. As a side note, the English major with an interest in post colonial theory side of me also really liked that she was Native American and it was a big part of her, instead of being her entire identity.
Other highlights include every mention of Canada (but I’m Canadian, we usually get excited when someone remembers we’re up here), the Quebecois Boreads, Festus the dragon and the Earthborn getting confused.
Gee it’s hard to write about this without using all caps so I can shout about how excited I am about the ending but I think I can manage. Still, I’d better end this post soon before something slips out.
Last movie I watched: Big Fish. I remember watching this movie as a kid and leaving with the impression that it didn’t make sense. It totally does now and it’s kind of awesome.
Last TV show I watched: Game of Thrones. Tyrion Lannister was epically fantastic as usual. Jon Snow made plot happen by being an idiot, again. Arya Stark seems to have more brains than her brother and Theon Greyjoy seems to be super annoying. Great episode all around!