Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan
Anyone who reads this blog (or has talked to me about books) probably knows that I’m a big fan of Rick Riordan. His writing is fresh and witty, funny but never loses that emotional anchor. As always, he does not disappoint with The Hammer of Thor. Picking up after the events of the first book, The Sword of Summer, this novel had me laughing out loud from the first chapter. It also has adventure and more character development. (Caution: very slight spoiler ahead for anyone who is familiar with Rick Riordan’s other work…) And it ended with me slightly agape and very excited for the next novel because this was the last paragraph: “Annabeth smiled. “I don’t know the ocean very well, but my boyfriend does. I think it’s time you met Percy.”
The Trials of Apollo, Book One: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
The Trials of Apollo picks up six months after the conclusion of the war against Gaea and her giants in Rick Riordan’s previous series, The Heroes of Olympus. Zeus, angry over the part that one of Apollo’s demigod sons played in the recent war, punishes Apollo by turning him into a dorky, mortal teenage boy. Apollo wakes up in an alley in New York City with fuzzy memories from his previous four thousand years and only a fraction of his usual godly powers. Tethered to the servitude of a surly daughter of Demeter named Meg, Apollo must find a way back into Zeus’ favor and Olympus. Rick Riordan is one of my favorite authors because his writing captivates my attention from start to finish. I mean, each chapter in The Hidden Oracle starts with a haiku (Apollo being the god of poetry), how can you NOT like that? I also love, love Rick Riordan’s sense of humor and the way he weaves ancient Greek mythology through the modern world. While I don’t believe it is strictly necessary to start at the beginning of Riordan’s Greek mythology series (going all the way back to The Lightning Thief) in order to enjoy this new one, some minor things will be lost if you don’t and I think all the rich history of this world is worth the extra effort.
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan
Having now read 13 of Mr. Riordan’s mythology-based adventure novels, I can say with certainty that he knows what he’s doing. While each pantheon (Greek, Roman, Egyptian and now Norse) has its own feel and characters, all of the books have the same wittiness, fun, and charisma. Magnus Chase has been living on the streets of Boston for the past two years. Since his mother’s death, nothing has felt quite right. Then on his sixteenth birthday, he is tracked down by his estranged uncle who tells him that he is actually the son of a Norse god. Magnus must fulfill his destiny by finding the Sword of Summer and keeping it from falling into the wrong hands and hastening Ragnarok. Cue a quest through several of the Nine Worlds using runic magic, dwarven crafting, and a sword with a mind of its own. I absolutely recommend Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard: The Sword of Summer, but then again, I was predisposed to like it.
What We Can All Learn From “Percy Jackson” — And Reading Kid Lit as a Whole via Bustle
Very interesting article defending “pleasure reading” from being called inferior to so-called “high literature.” Read it and let me know what you think in the comments.
Then you can read my opinion here.
The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan
It’s over. After nine years and ten witty and entertaining books, Rick Riordan’s Greek mythology novel series is complete. Writing this review feels a little bittersweet as I’m sad that there will be no more exciting Greek/Roman demigod adventures to read but, on the other hand, completely satisfied by the last installment. Yes, I’m an unadulterated Rick Riordan fangirl but “The Blood of Olympus” was truly a great ending to The Heroes of Olympus series. It had it all: page-turning suspense, the usual levity and fun, emotional drama and a rewarding resolution. I don’t want to give anything away for those that haven’t been able to devour their copies yet so I’ll just say that if you haven’t tried these books, I highly recommend them all as some of the best I’ve read.
Born: June 5, 1964, San Antonio, TX
Richard Russell “Rick” Riordan, Jr. was born in San Antonio, Texas to a musician/artist mother and ceramicist father, who were also both teachers. He was editor of his high school newspaper. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a double major in English and history.
Mr. Riordan’s first career was as a middle-school teacher. He worked at Presidio Hill School in San Francisco, California for eight years before moving back to San Antonio. After six more years of teaching at Saint Mary’s Hall, Mr. Riordan made the tough decision to become a full-time writer, although he is still teaching kids through his books.
While living in San Francisco, Mr. Riordan was nostalgic for his hometown in Texas. He wrote his first novel “Big Red Tequila,” a mystery set in San Antonio. He taught Greek mythology to his students and got the idea for his best-selling Percy Jackson series by telling his son, Haley, bedtime stories. “I think kids want the same thing from a book that adults want,” he has said, “a fast-paced story, characters worth caring about, humor, surprises and mystery.”
He currently lives in San Antonio with his wife and two sons, Haley and Patrick.
Big Red Tequila (1997)
The Widower’s Two-Step (1998)
The Last King of Texas (2001)
The Devil Went Down to Austin (2002)
Cold Springs (2004)
Mission Road (2005)
The Lightning Thief (2005)
The Sea of Monsters (2006)
The Titan’s Curse (2007)
Rebel Island (2008)
The Battle of the Labyrinth (2008)
The Maze of Bones (2008)
The Last Olympian (2009)
The Demigod Files (2009)
The Lost Hero (2010)
The Red Pyramid (2010)
The Son of Neptune (2011)
The Throne of Fire (2011)
Vespers Rising (2011)
The Mark of Athena (2012)
The Demigod Diaries (2012)
The Serpent’s Shadow (2012)
The House of Hades (2013)
Son of Sobek (novella, 2013)
The Staff of Serapis (novella, 2014)
Percy Jackson’s Book of Greek Gods (2014)
The Blood of Olympus (2014)
The Blood of Olympus comes out TOMORROW! This week will be dedicated to all things Rick Riordan & The Heroes of Olympus culminating in a review of the book on Friday.
So to get things started… here are some fun pins from Pinterest having to do with The Heroes of Olympus because yes, there are people out there who love it more than me. O_O
Big Red Tequila by Rick Riordan
Review: This was Rick Riordan’s first ever published novel. It is a mystery novel set in San Antonio and sparked a string of novels featuring the protagonist, Tres Navarre. I can see the beginnings of Mr. Riordan’s dry wit; the humor I love from the Percy Jackson novels. However, this book is definitely darker and more adult than the books he is known for now but I can still see his writing style. The plot and mystery elements were solid but not earth-shattering. And I do feel that the main character would have, realistically, gotten shot several times during the course of his investigation because he took huge risks without any backup but it was nonetheless entertaining.
Check out this wonderful article on Rick Riordan and the changing world of kid’s literature.
Warning: this article contains spoilers for “The House of Hades.”
Percy Jackson: The New World of Kid Lit via BookRiot
Rick Riordan’s Heroes of Olympus series is technically closer to YA than the Percy Jackson series, but only because the characters are older. (And even then, not all of its characters are). Percy is 17, but you have characters anywhere from 13 to adults. And it’s clean. There’s no cursing, there are a few on-screen kisses (but that’s as far as that goes), and it’s violent, but not scarily so. It’s a great kid lit series. Read more…