Book Review: Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
The Sea of Monsters
by: Rick Riordan
The second book in this series, it was definitely on par with the first book, which is usually saying a lot. The storyline was just as dramatic as The Lightning Thief and incorporated a lot of the stories found in Greek mythology. I admire this attribute of the book, as I believe it can assist in teaching the basics of Greek mythology by incorporating the stories into the book. Such references as Jason and the Argonauts, the Fates, the Golden Fleece, the Sirens and of course, the gods.
Continuing from the storyline in the Lightning Thief, Grover sets on a quest to find the god of the Satyrs who disappeared many years ago. Of hundreds of satyrs that have ventured to find the god, Pan, none have returned. It becomes the personal duty of Percy and Annabeth to find and retrieve Grover, who is being held hostage by Polyphemus, a Cyclops. In addition, the tree of Thalia at Half Blood Hill has been poisoned and only the retrieval of the Golden Fleece being held by Polyphemus will heal her.
The adventures that ensue in the quest are laden with Greek references and are fast paced. For a young adult novel, it kept this 32 year olds attention and interest :)
Once again, though, I was appalled by the amount of gross similarities between this story and the Harry Potter series.
Let's analyze the three main characters: Percy, Annabeth and Grover
* Percy Jackson and Harry Potter
+ Both characters are the alpha male - the hero in the story
+ Each has special "magical" abilities
+ Each had a troubled childhood
+ Each is considered the "chosen one" in their respective books
+ They are about the same age
+ They both have a significant "prophecy" that is applicable to their futures
+ They incorporate many of the same attributes: courage, strength
* Annabeth and Hermione
+ Alpha female
+ Very persistent
+ The strong and decisive one in the group
* Grover and Ron
+ The weakest of the characters with the character flaw being cowardly
In addition to the main three characters, here are even more similarities:
* There is an evil villain who is alive, but only in transition, each with an "army" trying to revive them
+ Voldemort - Harry Potter
+ Kronos - Percy Jackson
* Each story has a "Draco" character
* although in Harry Potter it is a minor character, it is only used in reference in Percy Jackson
Overall, I would recommend this book as a fun read. It is definitely written for older children, but the language and story are written well enough to keep the interest of any appropriate age.