Title: The Blood of Olympus
Series: The Heroes of Olympus, #5
Author: Rick Riordan
Pages: 516 Pages
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion Books
Reading Level: Middle Grade
POV: 3rd-Person Limited, Multiple Characters
Whoo hoo, my first book review! And for your viewing pleasure, a 10-minute sketch of our boy, Leo Valdez, and his mechanical dragon, Festus!
First thing’s first: it’s the end of the Heroes of Olympus series! It was so bittersweet going into reading this novel and knowing it’s likely the last I’ll read of Percy and the gang. Unfortunately, Percy and Annebeth do not get nearly enough screen-time. Leo, Jason, Piper, Reyna, and Nico hold the reins of the story.
Reyna, Nico, and Piper greatly mature in the Blood of Olympus. It is great watching Nico come into his own, and the true selflessness of Reyna. Piper evolves from a vapid character to a true friend and warrior (yes, I know she “doesn’t” care about her beauty, but in the first book that’s all we hear about!). What about Leo? Yes, he’s a prankster, but he’s always placed his quest and friends first and he is no different in this final novel.
Reyna and Nico’s POV’s were the quickest to read, followed by Piper, Leo, and then Jason. But flipping from one point of view to another right when things are about to get interesting feels a bit cheap. It’s definitely a common writing strategy, but with a writer as prolific as Riordan, I’ve come to expect a bit more. With that said, The Blood of Olympus is still a fun read.
Yet unlike its predecessors, I had no problem setting down The Blood of Olympus. I’d pick it up whenever I felt up to it, but I wasn’t chomping at the bit to finish it during my spare time. In fact, it took me about a month to finish reading it! The pacing seemed a bit off and the action and climax overall lackluster.
Getting through the novel is a bit of a chore: our main characters have to accomplish x, y, and z all before the end of the world, or else. There were few surprises and the audience largely knew what to expect. Even so, Riordan’s characterization, inside jokes, and wild imagination still made it an enjoyable read.
Verdict: I would absolutely recommend this series, and especially its predecessor, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, to readers young and old.
I’m still not sure how Jason won an underwater battle while Percy was completely incapacitated by poison. Also, question: when did Percy’s “fatal flaw” ever impact our characters? Answer: Never.
Leo dying and then being brought back with the Physician’s Cure made his sacrifice feel hollow. Also, it seems out of character for him not to insist he and Calypso immediately return to Camp HalfBlood to assure his compadres he is a-ok.
Will and Nico make an adorable couple! And Nico finally deciding to make an effort to connect with others is long overdue. I think we have Reyna to thank for that!
The ending was completely anti-climactic. Gaea’s demise was clever (Thanks Percy’s sis!), but the main characters never really seemed to be in danger. However, I loved Octavian’s demise and Leo’s memory of a screaming fireball.