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Percy Jackson and the Olympians

Discussion in 'Books and Anime Discussion' started by Sol, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. Zeitgeist

    Zeitgeist High Inquisitor

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    The last book of the Kane Chronicles, The Serpent's Shadow, came out recently. Yes, I realise that quite a few people on these forums have issues with the Kane Chronicles, especially with the character of Sadie, but I unabashedly love those books. Probably because Egyptology (stemming from my love of the Mummy movies) is one of my favourite subjects.

    The Serpent's Shadow is a great book. Even if you didn't like the first two books, this last one, as long as you keep an open mind about it when initially reading it, will impress you. The points in particular will interest you:

    The cameos of Drew & Lacy from Heroes of Olympus, and the consequent allusions for an Egypt-Greek-Roman encounter add flames to the fanfiction fire. If it wasn't suggested before, it's definitely confirmed now: the Kane Chronicles and PJO share the same universe.

    I really also like how the Egyptian Magicians have now all brought their A game. With the stunts they pull off through channeling the powers of their patron gods, especially in the climatic fight against Apophis, the Egyptians can safely be said to be in a similar league to the Demigods.

    The concept of magic and hieroglyph magic, concerning more defined areas of magical theory such as exacration, is also more explored in this last book. I do like the idea of systematic, script-based magic, perhaps arising from my soft spot for Harry Potter. And Sadie's more likeable in this book. Perhaps because both Kanes are really put through the ringer in the finale.

    Some of the issues of the Kane Chronicles still remain: I doubt that you'll enjoy The Serpent's Shadow as much as PJO if you're not that familiar with Egyptology. But if like me, you are a fan of mummies and canopic jars and freaky monsters from the desert, this book is for you.
     
  2. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    Even though I think that the difference between the PJ books and the Kane books is so immense, that the first chapter of the Son of Neptune was better than both Kane books combined, was still going to buy this one, just for the sake of finishing the series that, all things considered, wasn't that bad. (really, just Sadie who I want to die) Still dude, thanks for the heads up.
     
  3. LuckyFelix

    LuckyFelix Seventh Year

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    BTW, the first chapter of The Mark of Athena has been posted on the books website, it's from Annabeth's PoV.

    I really wish this series was all Percy's PoV. Percy was awesome, and while some of the new characters are interesting and stuff, I don't like any as much as Percy.
     
  4. Howdy

    Howdy Dark Lord

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    The cover art alone makes me not want to read the damn book. That fight should last all of two seconds.

    I want to punch Riordan in the face for nerfing Percy so hard after he basically became the biggest badass ever in Last Olympian.
     
  5. Zeitgeist

    Zeitgeist High Inquisitor

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    I quite like the cover art, tbh. The strong emergence of Athena's regalia gives me good feelings (let's face it, Athena is the biggest bamf in the Iliad and Odyssey; she may have been nasty to Percy, but the woman has style). Moreover, I like Jason: he's a decent character, who was, yes, bland at times but nonetheless was sympathetic. Although Percy is great, why does it bother you that other character get to share the spotlight? And no, don't mention the loss of the Achilles' Gift: even if Percy still retained that power, I wouldn't change my question. His badassness doesn't isn't mutually exclusive with the abilities of side characters. Just because Jason has the goods doesn't emasculate Percy.

    Hell, I thought having side-characters who are able to support a series was a hallmark of balanced writing which isn't a mere "one-man show". =/

    Bro, you really need to let go your dead horses, in both the Korra thread and here too. Both the topics of lightning and Jason were beaten to death months prior in their respective threads; if you don't like a series, why are you posting in the relevant thread?

    I'm just glad that the creators haven't had to quit halfway and resulted in the Joan of Arcadia or Firefly Syndrome. And we could have gotten a greater pile of shit.

    Now, to talk about something which hasn't been discussed excessively already: your thoughts on Annabeth's status as one of the Seven Demigods? Since she receives her own POV, it is likely that she, not Nico, is the final of the Seven. On the plus side, we finally are given glimpses into Annabeth's perspective, which complements what we know from Percy.

    However, the question is whether Riordan would be able to portray her in a suitable fashion: Annabeth's role in the Mark of Athena may be a potentially antagonistic one, so Riordan has his work cut out for him if he wants the readers to like her...
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2012
  6. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    So, the book is supposed to be coming out in three days. Am really curious how the POVs are going to be handled in this one. I kind of doubt it is going to be Annabeth only but at the same time, I doubt that it is going to be seven POVs. As much as I love the Percy Jackson books, Game of Thrones, it is not.

    Really hope that the narrative will focus mostly on Percy, or at least, on just three characters. Don't think I can sit through another Piper POV.

    Still, really looking forward to this book.
     
  7. azrael

    azrael Professor

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    ^^Agreed. I don't think it will be entirely Annabeth's POV, especially since it would completely disregard the precedent set in the first two books of Heroes of Olympus. At the same time, I can't imagine Riordan would want to cycle through seven different perspectives within one book, so he probably will cycle through three like he did for Lost Hero and Son of Neptune. And I agree, Piper POV would suck-bad enough I have to deal with Annabeth's.
     
  8. Ragon

    Ragon Dark Lord

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    Read somewhere that it will have 4 POV. I'm guessing Percy, Anabeth, Jason, and I have no clue about the fourth. I'm wanting to see how Jason and Percy get along. I think if it comes down to a fight between them for some reason Percy kicks Jason's ass into the ground.
     
  9. Howdy

    Howdy Dark Lord

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    We'd have to suspend our disbelief to an unbearable degree otherwise. Not only is Percy on another level through what we've seen him do, but it's stated somewhere in Son of Neptune that the Roman daughter of Hades puts Jason as a distant third when compared to Nico and Percy in power.
     
  10. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    Yeah, Percy should have a tremendous advantage against Jason, and I do hope Riordan keeps that in mind.

    I am looking forward to see how it would come to that in the first place though. Percy is a rather nice guy and unless Jason changes to a bully (which is unlikely seeing that Jason seems to be the kind of guy that Percy could be friends with) or they have some huge disagreement (whether it is who becomes leader, how they do things, maybe saving Annabeth, etc), well, am interested to see if it really comes to that.

    Have heard that Bacchus and Hercules are going to make appearances, so, that should be great as well. Dionysus was my favorite god in the first series so, seeing his Roman version should be awesome.
     
  11. Howdy

    Howdy Dark Lord

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    Pretty sure it's been implied numerous times that Annabeth will be the crux of their disagreement.
     
  12. CareOtters

    CareOtters Headmaster DLP Supporter

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    Especially in this kind of heroic YA series, ability is often not the sole reason behind winning a fight. Having the moral high ground gives weaker characters plot armour to a huge degree at time. Not to mention that strength is far less important than a handful of cunning tricks or distractions can be. When two protagonists face off in such a manner, it often boils down to the stronger guy is being a dick, which enables the weaker one to beat their ass, and knock some sense back into them, and return them to good-guy hero mode.

    Personally, I don't give a damn, and think that if they fought a dozen times, the outcomes would be distributed closer to evenly than you might expect. I'm far more interested in seeing a greater challenge that they have to face as a group - though not in a Narutoesque power of friendship trite melodrama where they bicker, fall apart, and finally reform a bond in a big bad battle.

    In a world where gods and demigods wander around, I'm eager to see a normal-ish person match the powerful characters through sheer cunning - kinda like Codex Alera nearly gave us.

    I do wish Percy had kept the Achilles Gift - obstacles that couldn't be overcome by conventional beatdowns are far more interesting, and I have a guilty pleasure in reading curbstomp indy!fic beatdowns from time to time.
     
  13. Ragon

    Ragon Dark Lord

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    I got the impression from Son of Neptune, that while Percy's invulnerability is gone he is actually stronger without it. His fight at the glacier seems to prove that to me. He had to maintain the Curse of Achilles and it drained him to a point, but without it he is at full strength even if he isn't invulnerable.

    But yes Hazel ranks Percy and Nico above Jason in Son of Neptune, and while I'm not sure about Nico, Percy is on a whole different level. I remembered Jason's calling out his résumé to the giant in the end of the Lost Hero and thinking hell Percy's would take up a full chapter.

    Percy is also older too, which likely factors into it. Percy has always been strong, but its obvious that he has gotten stronger as he has grown up.
     
  14. DarkAizen

    DarkAizen Professor DLP Supporter

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    Yeah, so this book sucks. Only six chapters from Percys point of view. I don't know if this book was actually bad or maybe I'm not used to reading about teenagers and boyfriend/girlfriend drama. Most of the book is told from Annabeth , Leo and worst of all Pipers point of view.

    On a plus side, Hercules and Bachus(sp?) were pretty awesome.

    Also, it looks like the next book won't have Percy in it. If I had to guess it will be from Jason and Nicco's point of view.
     
  15. azrael

    azrael Professor

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    Yeah, I was honestly pretty disappointed. Percy seemed ridiculously nerfed at some points, and compared to previous books his balls seem to have undergone some massive shrinkage. The stuff that happened with Reyna and the Romans seemed especially dumb, too. I was amused, though, that after spending the entire book trying to be ambiguous about the relative strengths of Percy and Jason, at the end it's flat out said that Percy is noticeably above any other living demigod (when he's on his game, at least, which he seemed not to be for most of this book).

    I also found it strange that, after all of the things said in previous books and the parallels made with Hercules, upon meeting him none of those previous allusions are mentioned. And on top of that, they all seemed to take it for granted that Hercules could destroy their ship and kill them all with no trouble, despite previous implications that Percy was like a modern-day Hercules and the admission by Zeus that Percy was an even greater hero than Hercules. The fact that Hercules is a god now should hardly even have been an issue, considering the number of immortal beings Percy has gone one-on-one with in the past, and this time he had six other powerful demigods and a badass warship to help.
     
  16. Cruentus

    Cruentus Chief Warlock DLP Supporter

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    I'll have to wait till I read it myself to form an opinion, but I've yet to find any of the series that I've disliked. Still time will tell.
     
  17. LuckyFelix

    LuckyFelix Seventh Year

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    Finished it, and I'm not sure exactly which way I feel about it.

    I don't think it was as good as the other books, but I'm not sure I'd call it particularly bad. It had some good moments, and a lot of ho hum moments. Too much needless romance drama.


    And yes, it did seem at times as if the book went out of it's way to nerf Percy a bit.

    Maybe the next book will make up for that?

    ...or whenever we see Percy again. He'll have to go full out badass to get through Tartarus. I hope we get to see a bit of it either in The House of Hades or whatever book comes after that.
     
  18. Zeitgeist

    Zeitgeist High Inquisitor

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    Seriously? Am I the only person here who thinks that Mark of Athena was amazing, much better than the Kane Chronicles and better than Lost Hero? It ranks up there in SoN for me. The previous books were great, with their blend of humour and action, but MoA had character development. Jason, who I thought was "blah" and a generic superhero, showed more depth and gained my respect by showing his flaws. Piper wasn't just a damsel in distress and actually used her brains to manoeuvre herself out of predicaments. And Leo was very relatable in this book; he became more nuanced as a character.

    But let's be honest, this was essentially the Annabeth story. For once, we get to see the thought processes of the girl who drove us a little mad during the Percy Jackson series. And you know what? She impressed me in MoA: her confrontation and battle with
    Arachne
    were highlights, in that Annabeth utilised her skills as a child of Athena in wisdom and crafts, out of all things, to defeat her greatest fear. Both metaphorically and literally.

    Yes, Percy didn't have a lot of attention in this book, but the series and fandom as a whole benefited from expanding the universe and developing other characters. Most critics agree with me on that point; MoA was a well-written book. There's a reason why the sequel series is called Heroes of Olympus, rather than Percy Jackson II. Percy is fantastic, but this series is about more than just him.

    And to assuage your fears, the ending is badass.
    Riordan has both confirmed in person and implied in MoA through Nico's assertion that the Doors "must be closed from both the mortal side and Tartarus side" that House of Hades will feature POVs from Percy and Annabeth, as they have their own trials within the Underworld. Be rest assured that Percy will still feature in the next book
     
  19. Sesc

    Sesc Slytherin at Heart Moderator

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    I liked it. I just finished reading through the entire series in one go, and I liked Mark of Athena if for nothing else than for the fact that the storylines finally split. Having different groups in different places actually makes different POVs necessary, and the book less linear. I though that was a major plus. I liked Annabeth's POV too. Dunno why others don't.

    What I disliked in The Lost Hero was that the hero was lost. Jason just doesn't have the same draw for me as Percy does, maybe because I'd just finished the first series, and then to have an entire book without him ... well, yeah. I read that book more to read the ones that'd follow than anything else >_>

    And since I'm always one for some romance, I liked those parts too. I thought they were decently written. Plus,
    Percy and Annabeth together walking through Tartarus sounds like one of the best storylines ever :3
     
  20. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    Finished Mark of Athena today, and over all, liked it much more than Lost Hero and the Kane books (sans Serpent's Shadow which I haven't read yet) but not as much as any of the PJ books.
    Annabeth was a great addition to the POVs and I really liked her chapters. It makes her easily my second favorite character after Percy and I really wish the POVS were just split between her and Percy and maybe Nico in the next book.

    However, I still do not like most of the other demigods on this quest. Most of the time, when we see Piper, she angsts about the fake past that she had with her boyfriend and worries he might get together with Reyna which was annoying in the last book and is now even more annoying seeing that we have actually met Reyna and like her far, far, faaaar more than we ever did Piper. True, she did have a moment or two but I immensely dislike her charmspeak and how often she uses it on her own teammates and other people and I do hope she gets called out on that.

    Jason, well, I still find him to be a tool and I just don't like that guy. Don't hate him or anything but he just isn't an interesting character.

    The whole jealousy shtick between Hazel, Leo and Frank was tiresome as well and I really got sick off it after a while. Hazel is just not that interesting of a character now that her mystery has been solved in the last book, which is also the reason why she didn't have a POV in this book and Frank, well, he just seemed unlikable in this one. His abilities are neat and even though he has this huge weakness, it is not like he was in extra peril this time or something. Leo was the one other character who stood out by actually being interesting at times and he does have the occasional funny line and his growth was the one I liked most in this book but over all, he isn't someone I want to follow all that much.

    So yeah, overall, decent book, enjoyed reading it and when it was good, it was good, like the endfight and Annabeth's trials and some of the interactions on the boat but it could have been better. Agree that Percy seemed way off his game this book and he was on the ropes way too much, although, that did show some interesting glances into his character. Although, there were one too many situations in which water was useless for Percy, so, that did become grating. There were a few oppoent

    However, the next book promises to be amazing, really looking forward to that one.

    Hopefully, we will get Nico's POV in that one as well and drop Piper's POV in exchange. She is not as detestable as Sadi but I do want her to die.