You Guys! I swear I'm going to be finished with my 2012 reviews at some point. Going back and writing the ones I missed has been both really fun (revisiting these books has been so much fun!) and kind of a curse (because I'm pretty OCD about finishing things, so I started 2012, it needs to get done!). If I start writing reviews from earlier.... (since I just set up my reading lists from earlier years and my TBR/Owned pile... go check them out!)
I was so excited to start this series. I loved this book and the other two Riordan has written so far (which, ironically, I have already reviewed: The Son of Neptune and The Mark of Athena). I completely enjoyed the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series and was in love with The Kane Chronicle series. So I was thrilled to have another set of Rick Riordan books to add into the mix.
This book sets the stage for The Heros of Olympus series. It's told in a rotation of perspective of the three main characters: Jason, Piper, and Leo and it chronicles their adventures to transition from American Teenagers to American Demigods.
Jason just woke up on a bus ride with a group of kids going on a field trip and remembers nothing from before. He quickly learns that he supposedly has a girlfriend named piper and a best friend named Leo - both of which are on the bus with him. Unfortunately the kids on the bus are all from a school for "bad kids" and Jason has no idea how he got there. Piper has a secret of her own: she had a crazy nightmare and now her dad has been missing for three days. She's also confused as to why Jason, her boyfriend, doesn't seem to recognize her. Leo is a kid who is a genius with tools - he can build or repair anything. He always seems to be the third wheel around Piper and Jason and is trying to figure out who he is and what he's meant to do.
These adventures take them all over the place, involve a giant mechanical dragon, and bring us face-to-face with more gods, myths, and legends. Surrounded by a new and dangerous sounding prophecy, our three new demigods find themselves at Camp Half-Blood right on the verge of something big.
There was a lot I liked about this book. Sure, it took a while to get used to the new voices and separate myself from the Percy Jackson series, but once that happened I could not seem to put this book down. What I loved most was Riordan's foray into Roman mythology. Yes, it's a seemingly no-brainer after having already conquered Greek and Egyptian, but Riordan did it seamlessly. There are so many places that the Greek and the Roman mythologies overlap with slight differences and their own nuances and Riordan was able to balance and explain them without breaking down what he had already built. It will be interesting when this comes more into the forefront in later books, I'm sure.
I don't think Riordan could have written a better book to start off this series. It was fast paced, creative, thought provoking, and hilarious. Seriously. Leo may be my new favorite half-blood. His wise-cracks and one liners had me laughing out loud and made me look forward to reading his sections more than Piper or Jason. I also think it was smart of Riordan to leave Percy out of the first book of this series. Yes, it's a follow up to Percy Jackson and the Olympians, but it is also a series that should be able to stand on its' own. If Percy had a voice in this book it would have just felt like another book in the last series, or that Riordan was trying to ride his own coattails. As it is, this book is a wonderful start to what promises to be an action-packed and interesting series.
Title: The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus #1)
Author: Rick Riordan
Genre: YA; Adventure; Fantasy
Medium: Hard Cover
Date Read: 21 January 2012
Source: Barnes & Nobel
First Line: Even before he got electrocuted, Jason was having a rotten day.
Favorite Line: "Can we just call them storm spirits?" Leo asked. "Venti makes them sound like evil espresso drinks."
Last Line: "Exactly," Jason agreed. "Percy Jackson is at the other camp, and he probably doesn't even remember who he is." [Whited out, for spoiler's sake]
Recommended: Yes. I LOVED this book and think it's a great start to a new series.
Recommended For: Middle School +, Rick Riordan Fans, Those who miss Percy Jackson, History/Mythology Geeks, YA lovers, adventure fans, etc.