Review: The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus, #3)

Title: The Mark of Athena
Author: Rick Riordan
Publisher: Disney/Hyperion
Date Read: January 20-21, 2013

Annabeth is terrified. Just when she’s about to be reunited with Percy– after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera– it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. AS Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon figurehead, Leo’s fantastical creation doesn’t appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace. And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket, Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving command: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge Me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find– and close– the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?
Annabeth’s biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he’s now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader– but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.
Narrated by four different demigods, The Mark of Athena is an unforgettable journey across land and sea to Rome, where important discoveries, surprising sacrifices, and unspeakable horrors await. Climb aboard the Argo II, if you dare…

Characters: I will only be discussing the characters that I didn’t discuss in the first two reviews, which pretty much just leaves Annabeth, so here goes…

Annabeth- You really feel for the girl in this one! She hasn’t seen her boyfriend in forever, and now she has a ridiculous task that her schizo mother expects her to do by herself. Oh, and nobody has survived this particular “quest.” Poor, poor girl. But one of the things that I love about Annabeth is that she sucks it up. She is a strong, smart girl, and a great role model for any younger readers. She keeps her head up even though she is struggling inside, and even though she couldn’t ask for help even if she wanted to, she doesn’t want to endanger others by asking. She also keeps it in her to be sensitive when it’s required.

Conflict: Annabeth, Percy, Hazel, Frank, Leo, Piper and Jason have to go to Rome to close the Doors of Death. Unfortunately, there are a billion obstacles along the way. Also, Annabeth is going through a ton of stuff, and won’t be able to be with them in Rome. At least for a while. The conflict is pretty well described in the blurb and in my Annabeth character section.

Things I Liked: I really loved the first two books in this series, and this book is no different. It’s 574 pages, and I read it in less than 48 hours. So, yeah it was pretty awesome. The conflict flows really well, and I love that it is both resolved and extended so that the next book is something you can look forward to, but there is still progress in the novel. That is a tightrope that not all authors make it across, and Riordan slam-dunks again. I may just have to look into his other series. In addition to the overall conflict, I really like that the story is told from the viewpoints of all of the main characters so that you can really understand all of their problems. And, as my other reviews may have hinted, I really like all of the mythology… Greek and Roman!

Things I Didn’t Like: Uh, pass? I know it might make me a bad reviewer, but I really can’t think of anything off the top of my head. Riordan is a really great writer, and so if he is making any big mistakes, he does a good job of covering them up so I don’t remember them later…

Overall: I love the way Rick Riordan writes, and I love the way that the characters all have really good qualities, but that in the tradition of Greek/Roman mythology, there is still a fatal flaw for all of the. The conflicts are all intertwined and both mysterious and understandable. Fantastic.

Rating: 5 stars

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