Thursday, November 19, 2009
Review of The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
Riordan, Rick. The Last Olympian ("The Olympians" book 5). Disney Hyperion, 2009.
As devout readers of this series know, uber-Titan Kronos has been gaining strength and gathering a growing army of Titans and monsters in order to topple the Olympian Gods once and for all. As it is merely days until half-blood Percy Jackson's 16th birthday, the dreaded prophecy, and Percy's role in it, is about to be revealed. As monsters and Titans rage across the United States and in Poseidon's domain, Percy and his half-blood comrades rally their allies for one last stand against their enemy in New York City.
As the last in the series, many secrets and revelations are finally unveiled, making the matter of reviewing the book a delicate proposition. Therefore, I will keep it short and sweet. The yawn-inducing trope of The Final Battle aside, this installment is as exciting and funny as any of the previous books. Grover rallies his nature spirits (and eats a bit of expensive antique furniture), Annabeth kicks butt and takes names, and Percy demonstrates some awesome leadership skills. The bad guys remain mostly venomous cliches, but some of the Gods - Hades in particular - take on added depth that is most surprising and satisfying. Percy has some choices to make, although the arguably hardest one - which girl to choose, Annabeth or Rachel? - is conveniently taken out of his hands, the lucky boy. The battle is fierce and there are some deaths - but they are mostly very much glossed over and take little emotional toll, especially since the denouement is so happy and satisfying. Although readers may take issue with one of Percy's big choices, they will be content to know that in the future, demigods will have much less of a tough row to hoe thanks to Percy.
And the best news of all? Another Camp Half-blood series is still to come! Or so Riordan promises in the acknowledgments. Woo-hoo!
Essential for all fans of the series. Grades 4 to 10.
Posted by Eva M