Book Reviews: Percy Jackson #3-5

December 31, 2010

My promise to my daughter has been fulfilled. She read all seven of the Harry Potter books (well, we listened to them together), so I have read all five of the Percy Jackson books. This past month I finished the last three books in the series:  The Titan’s Curse, The Battle of the Labyrinth, and The Last Olympian. It has been some kind of trip. These books are immensely readable. There’s lot of action and comedy, the relationships are fun and interesting, and the characters all have their own unique journeys. In fact, the one thing this series has going for it that HP doesn’t is that each of Percy’s friends has his/her own motivations and quests. In HP, they’re always doing what Harry is called to do, and, though Percy is the main character, sometimes he is actually the sidekick in a couple of the books.

I hate to compare the two series because they’re so different even in their similarities. It’s just kind of hard not to. I will say the one thing I thought was missing from the books–particularly the final one–is a depth of emotion. Everything is all tangled up in family and friends, but it still felt kind of hollow and on the surface. I feel like I should’ve felt more, especially with the climax when really it was just like, “Well, I’m glad that’s resolved.”

That said, I had a lot of fun reading the books. They’re largely predictable for someone like me who has read and seen lots of books/movies, but there were moments here and there that surprised me. I feel like I need to investigate some more mythology, which is a win for Riordan who’s a teacher, and I really do love the characters that were introduced. I think things were resolved nicely here, while still leaving room for Riordan’s next series set at the camp. Which…I wish Rowling would set more stories at Hogwarts, so. (Ack! Another comparison!)

Anyway, a great little series, and I can see why my daughter loves it so much.

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