Book Review: The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan (The Heroes of Olympus #1)

Rating: 4.5/5

A book with enjoyable characters but annoying tropes.

Book CWs

  • Character Death
  • Mythological Creatures
  • Parental abandonment
  • Bullying
  • Manipulation

Premise

Jason is on a school bus for a class field trip. His hand is happily intertwined with his girlfriend Piper’s, and his best friend Leo is jabbering away in front of him. The problem is, Jason doesn’t remember getting on the bus. In fact, Jason doesn’t remember Piper. He doesn’t remember Leo. He doesn’t even remember that his name is Jason.

And that’s just the beginning.

During the field trip, the three of them are suddenly attacked by mysterious storm creatures and are forced to fight for their lives, slowly discovering that they have abilities no normal human should posses.

They are then whisked away to a place called Camp Half-Blood where the inhabitants claim to be descendants of gods.

Review (No Spoilers)

I read this book for a few Witchathon prompts and I was really worried about the fact that I haven’t read any of Riordan’s other books. I can safely say that while it was not necessary for me to read the Percy Jackson series first, I definitely wish that I had. Riordan does a decent job of filling you in with the important details you might have missed out on but there were many nods/references that I wasn’t able to fully appreciate.

My favorite thing about this book was, by far, the characters. Almost every character introduced was likable, which is a very rare thing for me. And by likable, I want to clarify that they were likable as who they were meant to be. In other words, heroes were hero-y, villains were villain-y, and other random character were…random-character-y.

Where the story lacked for me was the plot. As someone who is super unfamiliar with Greek/Roman mythology, I really wish there was more background given regarding some of the gods mentioned. There is a glossary at the end with very brief definitions/summaries about each mythological being, but I would have preferred to have these inserted into the narrative rather than as an endnote.

Some other things about the plot that I didn’t like was that the story is kind of moved along by vague prophecies and dream visions. And while I was totally fine with the prophecies, I felt the dreams were super unnecessary. I can understand that they were probably inserted as fan service for people who want to see some of the big-shot gods, but while reading them I felt like I was just wasting my time. Basically nothing of use came from these visions and any time a character would ask the god a question, the god would do the classic “you already know the answer” or “I can’t tell you because it’s something you need to find out yourself” which is a trope that super annoys me.

I bought the entire series at a used bookstore for super cheap so I definitely plan on finishing the rest. I’m just also going to be sure to read the Percy Jackson series before I read any further with this one.

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