Everyone finally comes into their own in this book. While we saw our heroes start gathering their strength in The House of Hades, in The Blood of Olympus it’s made extra-clear that these are far from ordinary kids – these are true heroes. I thought the final battle of New York was intense, but this – this was something else.
Of course, it wasn’t super smooth along the way. The book rockets along at a blistering pace, and several times I had to back up and re-read a few of the previous pages to catch something that I guess I skimmed over on the first read-through. So, a word of warning: even though the pace of these books is unbelievable, take your time and read every single sentence. There is so much that comes to pass that I’m sure I could have probably predicted better had I actually paid attention in previous books, but I was reading too fast (to get to the end to find out what happened!) that I missed a few things.
Is it an end to a series? Yes. Does it wrap up that series nicely? Yes. However, while the Battle of New York took place over like, half a book, the final final battle in this book is over in a few pages. I understand that we weren’t around to see the build-up of the battle for Half-Blood Hill, but I would have liked some more descriptions. Maybe not a hundred extra pages worth of descriptions (to make it match up with the length of The House of Hades), but maybe just a few extra details here and there. It was very straightforward and to-the-point at the end.
And speaking of the ending, what a cliffhanger. Well, not one that would leave me in desperation like at the end of The Mark of Athena, but definitely one that is more open-ended than the ending of The Last Olympian. Maybe we’ll get a third Percy Jackson series. Maybe there already is a third Greek/Roman series and I just haven’t come across it yet. (I know there’s one about the Trials of Apollo, but isn’t that a step back in time? Or am I misremembering?)
Is this a series for young adults? Yes. I think it’s a step above middle-school-grade, but if you’ve got a strong reader, it’s certainly worth a shot, especially if they loved the original Percy Jackson series. These books are much darker, and the characters feel a little more human. There’s still the suspense of reality in some points, where several people should have died/not made it out alive and yet they did so anyway, but in the end, Riordan isn’t George RR Martin and it’s somewhat a relief to have (most of) our heroes make it through, albeit a little injured at the last. But reading these as an adult, while I am a little frustrated at times by the teenage romance (which I never experienced as a teenager and which I’ve been jaded about my entire life), overall it’s a solid series with some seriously amazing writing and some fantastic situations, absolutely worth it if you have any sort of interest in Greek mythology (or Roman mythology, or just a good story).
One minor nitpick, though: at the end, Nico stays in the Hades cabin at Camp Half-Blood and thinks about how awful the interior design is, and wishes he’d been around to help design it. However, in The Last Olympian, at the very end of the series, Nico is summoning zombies to help him erect the Hades cabin, so he DID design it. Just a small inconsistency error that really made me upset. There have been a few throughout the series, but this one was the worst.
For that reason (among others, of course), I’ll give The Blood of Olympus a 4/5 star rating, and the final rating for the entire series falls somewhere around a 4.25/5 star rating, just because The House of Hades and The Son of Neptune were so fantastic, but the others fall a little short of the mark. Still an excellent series to spend a week or a month or a year reading through, no matter what pace you set for yourself.
Have you read The Heroes of Olympus series? Did you also think The House of Hades was better than the finale? Let me know in the comments!
And as always, keep reading.