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The Lost Hero (Heroes of Olympus, Book 1) Hardcover – October 12, 2010
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From School Library Journal
Gr 5-9-This book will delight fans of The Lightning Thief (Hyperion, 2005) as Percy, Annabeth, and others play roles in the new prophecy and its subsequent quest. A few months after The Last Olympian (Hyperion, 2009) ends, Jason wakes up on a bus filled with problem kids from the Wilderness School who are headed to the Grand Canyon. He has no memory of his previous life, but seems to be with his girlfriend, Piper, and his best friend, Leo. The action takes off quickly: storm spirits attack them and capture their coach, who turns out to be a Satyr. Searching for Percy, who is missing, Annabeth arrives and takes the three to Camp Half-Blood, where they learn that they are demigods. Their parents are gods in their Roman rather than Greek personae. By sunset of the solstice in three days, the teens must rescue Hera, Queen of the gods, or Porphyrion, the giant king created to destroy Zeus and unseat the gods of Olympus, will rise. Their quest takes them across the United States, sometimes flying on a mechanical, 60-foot dragon, as they use their power and wits against Medea, King Midas, and the giant cannibal Enceladus. Riordan excels at clever plot devices and at creating an urgent sense of cliff-hanging danger. His interjection of humor by incongruous juxtaposition-Medea, for example, heads up a New York City department store-provides some welcome relief. The young heroes deal with issues familiar to teens today: Who am I? Can I live up to the expectations of others? Having read the first series is helpful but not essential, and the complex plot is made for sequels.-Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Readers longing for a return to Camp Half-Blood will get their wish in the first novel of the Heroes of Olympus series, which follows Riordan’s popular Percy Jackson and the Olympians series and includes some of the same characters in minor roles. The new cast features Jason, Piper, and Leo, teen demigods who are just coming to understand and use their unique abilities as they learn how much depends upon their wits, courage, and fast-developing friendship. Setting up the books to come, the backstory of a master plan to unseat the gods is complex but is doled out in manageable bits with a general air of foreboding. Meanwhile, the action scenes come frequently as the three heroic teens fight monstrous enemies in North American locales, including the Grand Canyon, Quebec City, Detroit, Chicago, Omaha, Pikes Peak, and Sonoma Valley. Flashes of humor lighten the mood at times, but a tone of urgency and imminent danger seems as integral to this series as the last. With appealing new characters within a familiar framework, this spin-off will satisfy the demand for more. Grades 4-8. --Carolyn Phelan
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My feelings towards The Lost Hero are mixed, maybe because my expectations were so high for the continuation of Percy Jackson - a series that I love and hold close to my heart. Gone is Percy's sarcastic first person narration, gone is the focus on our favorite characters, and even Percy himself is gone. It was a bit jarring to get used to at first, but in the end, I liked it.
It's just not what I had in mind for a Percy Jackson book.
The good: there's still the wonderful myths that are tied up in modern day settings, and we're introduced to some new characters, including Jason Grace, who I didn't find anywhere near as fun as Percy. I found Leo to be my favorite of the new characters - his sarcasm worked for me and I'm always a fan of the underdog.
All in all it was good, just a jarring change for me. I've picked up the Son of Neptune, where Percy comes back (yay!). So we'll see what happens.
The frustrating part comes in when Riordan hints at Percy, barely touches on Annabeth, and only involves Thalia a little bit in the story. Annabeth shows up at the beginning, and throughout the whole book everyone talks about Percy, but you don't find out what happened to him until the end. And then you're just left worrying about what his experience has been like for the time frame of this book, and won't possibly be able to find out until the next is released next fall. A minor problem, considering this series is supposed to be about a different set of characters, but a frustrating one all the same if you love the original Percy Jackson characters.
Really, this is an amazing book for people of all ages if you like to laugh out loud when you're reading, and enjoy a good adventure story!