Also known as: the effect of graduation goggles.
I finished reading The Blood of Olympus, the last installment of The Heroes of Olympus series, over the weekend. The series is a spin-off of the original Percy Jackson and The Olympians books. While the first one focused on Greek mythology, this one tackles the gods’ and goddesses’ Roman avatars. It stars some of the same crew from the first series (like Percy and Annabeth), but focuses largely on new characters.
Now I’ve been reading and loving the Percy Jackson books for a long time; I began when the first three books were out, and haven’t stopped since. I think Rick Riordan is great at making ancient myths popular with kids through his accessible style. I enjoy his writing, even though his books sometimes have jokes that are so juvenile that they make my eyebrows furrow furiously and my eyes roll violently. I loved The House of Hades, the penultimate book in The Heroes of Olympus series. I’ve been looking forward to reading The Blood of Olympus since nearly a year. The only reason I didn’t read it as soon as it came out in October 2014 is because I had a big trip coming up in November, and I wanted to first reread not only this series but the Percy Jackson books too. Needless to say, expectations were running high.
So let’s get this out of the way. It wasn’t perfect. It definitely had some weak moments. And I’m left with the feeling that fifty more pages wouldn’t have hurt, if only to make the climax not feel quite so rushed. I also think that things tied up a little too neatly, some things were a little too convenient, and some people emerged a little too superhero-ish. I found the ending of The House of Hades more satisfying than this book’s ending.
But you know what I’ve realised? It doesn’t matter. I’ve stuck with Percy Jackson for several years and this conclusion to not one, but two series is making me feel more emotional than rational.
I vaguely liked Reyna before this book, but now she’s a certified badass. As for Nico, I discovered I enjoyed him – warts and all – in The Last Olympian but the amount of love I discovered for him in The House of Hades has solidified into official fangirldom in this book. And I never realised I was a shipper until a badly-disguised Will Solace appeared behind Nico near Thalia’s pine tree, but now I’m already wondering what combination of their names sounds best. And I found his confession to Percy about his previously-held feelings heartbreaking and hilarious in equal parts.
There were many, many moments in the book that made me grin like an idiot or emit excited squeals. And even though the ending left me with a bunch of unanswered questions, I’d like to imagine a happy life for all the characters, with an extra happy ending for both Nico and Reyna.
I unashamedly admit that the 5 star rating I gave it on Goodreads is a result of graduation goggles. I can still point out the parts of the book that could have been a whole lot better. I’ve read better series conclusions. But, like I said, it doesn’t matter. I crossed into official fangirl territory with The House of Hades and that is where I will stay.