Book Review: The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan

The Mark of Athena (Heroes of Olympus #3) by Rick Riordan

Pirate Princess’s Review

DESCRIPTION: “In The Son of Neptune, Percy, Hazel, and Frank met in Camp Jupiter, the Roman equivalent of Camp Halfblood, and traveled to the land beyond the gods to complete a dangerous quest. The third book in the Heroes of Olympus series will unite them with Jason, Piper, and Leo. But they number only six–who will complete the Prophecy of Seven? The Greek and Roman demigods will have to cooperate in order to defeat the giants released by the Earth Mother, Gaea. Then they will have to sail together to the ancient land to find the Doors of Death. What exactly are the Doors of Death? Much of the prophecy remains a mystery. . . . With old friends and new friends joining forces, a marvelous ship, fearsome foes, and an exotic setting, The Mark of Athena promises to be another unforgettable adventure by master storyteller Rick Riordan.”

Age Level: 10 and up
Print Length: 608 pages
Publisher: Disney Hyperion (October 2, 2012)

RATING 5 STARS

Omg, FREAKING AMAZING BOOK!

In The Mark of Athena, Percy, Hazel and Frank meet up with four others from Camp Half-Blood: Jason, Piper, Leo, and Annabeth. This book’s main conflict is pretty simple: Go to Rome and stay alive. Their goal is to make it to Rome, save Hazel’s brother, and find the Doors of Death.

This book takes place all over the world, but the main setting is on Leo’s warship: The ArgoII. They visit Kansas, Atlanta, and some more places. 😉

I loved, LOVED, that Annabeth’s was one of the narrators. It was fun to see from her point of view for the first time. Annabeth is such a kick-butt girl, it’s fun to see her point of view on things. Percy, of course, narrated some chapters too. The two of them together again was hilarious! 😀

The book was funny, had lots of action, problem solving, and Diet Pepsi(Don’t ask). I was laughing my head off at some things Coach Hedge did: One of which he’s on the boat yelling, ‘Bring it on lake! YEAH!‘ I thought that was hilarious.

The ending. -_- Oh. My. Freaking. Gosh. The ENDING. Rick did his first real cliffhanger. I admit though, I enjoy when something happens to the main characters because otherwise it seems like you’re favoring them too much. I’m glad Rick writes such amazing books for me to read. Five stars!

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I recommend to Rick Riordan fans, people who love mythology, and action lovers. If you’ve read The Lost Hero, The Son of Neptune, and Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief..You are bound to love this book. 🙂

Grab the Mark of Athena now on amazon:

Book Review: The Demigod Diaries by Rick Riordan

 

The Demigod Diaries (Heroes of Olympus) by Rick Riordan

Pirate Princess’s Review

DESCRIPTION: ”

What dangers do runaway demigods Luke and Thalia face on their way to Camp Half-Blood? Are Percy and Annabeth up to the task of rescuing stolen goods from a fire-breathing giant who doesn’t take kindly to intruders? How exactly are Leo, Piper, and Jason supposed to find a runaway table, dodge a band of party-loving Maenads (who just might be a little psychotic), and stave off a massive explosion…all in one hour or less?

With his trademark wit and creativity, Rick Riordan answers these questions and more in three never-before-seen short stories that provide vital back-story to the Heroes of Olympus and Percy Jackson books. Original art, enlightening character interviews and illustrated profiles, puzzles, and a quiz add to the fun in this action-packed collection that is sure to delight legions of loyal fans.”

Reading level: Ages 10 and up
Hardcover: 256 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (August 14, 2012)

RATING 5 STARS

LOOOOOOVED IT! <3! 😀 This book was amazing. Percy returned in one of the short stories in this book, along with Annabeth, Luke, Thalia, Leo, Jason, and Piper. Though, they weren’t all in the same story.

The Demigod Diaries has four short stories in it: Percy Jackson and the Staff of Hermes, The Diary of Luke Castellan, Leo Valdez and the Quest for Buford, and Son of Magic.

In Percy Jackson and the Staff of Hermes, it’s Percy and Annabeth’s 1 month anniversary. It was hilarious!

‘I gave her a smile that I hoped conveyed something like: Hey, you know I’m on your side. Gods are suck jerks! But what can you do? Probably my expression actually conveyed: It’s not my fault! Please don’t kill me!

Lmho, right? 😉 I loved reading from Percy’s point of view again, and since it was a date with Annabeth, that made it more awesome. 🙂 I also learned that Hermes may not be the safest delivery god. Why? Here’s why:

‘Hermes and I sat in the back of the truck on a couple of boxes labeled TOXIC SERPENTS. THIS END UP. Maybe that wasn’t the best place to sit, but it was better than some of his other deliveries, which were labeled EXPLOSIVES, DO NOT SIT ON, and DRAKON EGGS, DO NOT STORE NEAR EXPLOSIVES.’

-_- Yeah……Hermes isn’t the safest UPS guy. Oh, and it has a fire-breathing giant. Did I forget to mention that?

In The Diary of Luke Castellan, Luke writes from his point of view, part of his adventure with Thalia before camp. Which involved a magic goat with udders that gave out Pepsi and Free Ice. We also learn Luke’s first weapon was destroyed. The one he uses in the story is…..Dun, dun, dun! A golf club. Lol! I loved the magic goat/soda machine. 😛 Thalia was cool, as always. Luke was funny. Funny where I had tears coming out of my eyes. I now love Luke in this story. 🙂 My favorite part was, you guessed it, the soda/magic goat! 😀

Leo Valdez and the Quest for Buford. I was laughing so hard while I read it this one. It was awesome! Leo returns, along with Jason and Piper! You can tell this story is awesome because the first sentance in it is,

‘Leo blamed the Windex.’

😀 Awesome, right?! 😀 Buford is a walking table that, other than hates Windex, holds something important. Can’t tell you what because I you have to read it. 😛 Haha! It has insane chicks, a walking table named Buford, and of course, Leo Valdez! Also known as Repair Boy. Hehehe. There’s an awesome party too, and the Hokey Pokey.

The Son of Magic, the last short story in this book, was written by Rick’s son, Haley. It’s about a son of Hecate who fought for Kronos in the second titan war. We read the story from the point of view of Claymore, an author. The only thing I can tell you about this one without going into spoiler mode is Claymore is apparently really, really, aggnorant (And stubborn in my opinion). This one needed a bit more humor, other than that, cool-O!

The reading age says 10 & up, but I think 8, possibly 7-year-olds will be able to handle these stories. If you’re uncertain about it though, but you’re kid is a Percy Jackson fan, just make sure they don’t read The Diary of Luke Castellan if you buy it.

Altogether, five stars! Well done! I loved seeing my favorite characters again in this book of stories and games. Congrats to Rick Riordan and his son, Haley Riordan! 🙂

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I recommend to ages 8(Possibly 7)-Adult (Look at second to last paragraph if you’re concerned about age). If you’ve read his Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief series, or enjoyed Heroes of Olympus (Book #1), you will LOVE this.

Grab The Demigod Diaries now on Amazon:

 

Book Review: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Mike’s Review

DESCRIPTION: “Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until he was gruesomely murdered by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. They follow legends and local lore, destroy the murderous dead, and keep pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

Searching for a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas expects the usual: track, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, now stained red and dripping with blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

Yet she spares Cas’s life.”

Paperback: 320 pages
Recommended Age: Older Teen
Publisher: Tor Teen; First Edition edition (July 3, 2012)

RATING 4 STARS 

I almost walked away from this one a few times… But, I kept picking it up anyway and, eventually, it was worth it.

Anna Dressed in Blood has a great premise – and that’s what kept me from giving up on it. It’s not vampires, love triangles, and teenage angst (at least not entirely.) It’s a ghost story. A really creepy ghost story at times.

The problem, at least for me, was how slow it was to take full advantage of the premise. I was almost half-way through the book before the plot itself was gripping enough to keep me turning the pages. In and of itself, that wouldn’t be a deal-breaker. But, during that down time there wasn’t anything to balance out the lack of excitement. Every time it felt like it was about to kick into gear, it still managed to meander of pretty quickly.

I would really have liked to see more character depth from the beginning. More relationships. More conflict. More to keep me reading, and building the suspense, while waiting for the “ghosty” parts. Heck, I really wouldn’t have been upset to see any of the characters suffer a horrible death for the better part of half the book. That’s a problem.

As the story goes on, I never really fell for the protagonist, Cas, but there was still enough there to keep me hooked. Maybe that was the problem – the bulk of the beginning was supposed to be introducing Cas… and I just never really grew to like him during that time. At times I actually disliked him. If nothing else, how do you have a “ghost hunter” who seems so weak at times.

I normally would have rated this around three stars. But, my rule is that if I’ll pick up the next book in the series it’s worth 4. And, I just may grab the next one. Maybe. This book actually ended on a note that strongly reminded me of Demon Kissed – and that’s a great series.

***Although YA, my twelve year old will have to wait for this one… Otherwise I foresee a lot of nightmares in the near future. Just an FYI – maybe your kid is made of stronger stuff. But, I was creeped out at times, and I’m old enough to know the bogeyman isn’t under the bed.

4 star book review

Recommended for people who read YA Horror, Ghost Stories, and like a good creep-out.  Need a spooky read for Halloween?  This is it.  Anna Dressed in Blood is followed by Girl of Nightmares (release date Aug 7, 2012).

Grab Anna Dressed in Blood on Amazon now. It was only $2.99 when I grabbed it!

Thanks for reading my blog!  Check back for more awesome reviews soon!

Book Review: Matched (Matched #1) by Ally Condie

Matched (Matched #1) by Ally Condie

A Pirate Princess Review

DESCRIPTION: Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate… until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.

Reading level: Ages 12 and up
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Speak; Reprint edition (September 20, 2011)

RATING – 3 STARS – I ENJOYED THIS BOOK

This book was a good one. It’s dystopian and I still liked it. I don’t usually like dystopian books….at all.  (If you are looking for dystopian reads, check out Marie’s reviews.  She <3s that kinda thing).

Matched takes place in a province that part of something bigger. The Society. Cassia, Ky, and Xander are all main characters in this book, but the main main one is Cassia, a 16-year-old girl.

The main conflict in this book is something like this: Should Cassia trust the Society? Was it really a glitch was happened when she saw Ky’s face flash across the screen for a moment?(Yes, I know that’s two questions, but they’re to give you an idea of what the book is driven by.)

This book is relationship driven and it’s not fully dystopian. It’s like a dystopian/romance. Never read one of those before. The book was good enough for me to keep reading it. The ending was something of a cliffhanger. Not a real one, but it made you want more.

The book itself was good. Good job Ally! I liked Ky, I think he’s my favorite character in this book. I thought that at some parts is slow, but Ally made up for that. At the end there was some action brewing and I love action (I mostly read plot/action driven books.). However, I’m not sure it’s good enough for me to buy the next book. I bought this book because of the cover, which is AMAZING btw, but it’s still not exactly my type of book.

The last book I read was also a romance, but not fully dystopian. It’s called The Selection. I think the two books are very similar, but The Selection is more exciting and fun because of it’s main character, America (Not the country. The main character is actually called America.). In Matched there wasn’t a lot of laughs….Barely any. That made me sad. 🙁 It had some action, which was okay with me! The Selection had similar action-not exactly the same, but similar-but more of it.

pirate princess book reviews 3 stars

Recommended for dystopian fans of books like HUNGER GAMES, MAZE RUNNER, and DIVERGENT.  MATCHED is the first book in the trilogy, followed by CROSSED, and then REACHED.

Get MATCHED #1 by Ally Condie via Amazon:

Related posts: DIVERGENT & THE SELECTION Reviews

Book Review: Redshirts by John Scalzi

Redshirtsby John Scalzi

Mike’s Review

DESCRIPTION:

Ensign Andrew Dahl has just been assigned to the Universal Union Capital Ship “Intrepid,” flagship of the Universal Union since the year 2456. It’s a prestige posting, and Andrew is thrilled all the more to be assigned to the ship’s Xenobiology laboratory. Life couldn’t be better…until Andrew begins to pick up on the fact that (1) every Away Mission involves some kind of lethal confrontation with alien forces, (2) the ship’s captain, its chief science officer, and the handsome Lieutenant Kerensky always survive these confrontations, and (3) at least one low-ranked crew member is, sadly, always killed.

Not surprisingly, a great deal of energy belowdecks is expended on avoiding, at all costs, being assigned to an Away Mission. Then Andrew stumbles on information that completely transforms his and his colleagues’ understanding of what thestarship “Intrepid” really is…and offers them a crazy, high-risk chance to save their own lives

Print Length: 318 pages
Age: Adult Sci-Fiction
Publisher: Tor Books; 1 edition (June 5, 2012)
Sold by: Macmillan

RATING: 2 STARS – WISHED IT WAS BETTER

I love John Scalzi… Android’s Dream, Agent to the Stars, Old Man’s War, Ghost Brigade, and more are all awesome reads.

That said, I was incredibly disappointed by Redshirts. The idea was brilliant – and it starts out with great potential. But, it quickly drifts from being a great parody into murky meta territory.

Maybe I was the problem… I couldn’t quite follow when I was supposed to be taking the story seriously. Maybe there were some transitions in there that I missed. But, I think it’s more likely that I just can’t bring myself to appreciate what Scalzi was trying to do.

If you’re just discovering Scalzi, pick up any of his older works first. You won’t be disappointed. Once you’re a fan, maybe you’ll want to give Redshirts a chance. Go into it with an open mind, no preconceived notions, and see what you think. It’s original. It’s fresh. It just wasn’t for me.

Recommended for: Sci-Fi fans, general adult fiction, and Scalzi fans.

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Book Review: The Son of Neptune (Heroes of Olympus #2) by Rick Riordan

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THE SON OF NEPTUNE (Heros of Olympus #2) by Rick Riordan

A Pirate Princess Review

Description“Seven half-bloods shall answer the call, To storm or fire the world must fall. An oath to keep with a final breath, And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death.

Percy is confused. When he awoke from his long sleep, he didn’t know much more than his name. His brain fuzz is lingering, even after the wolf Lupa told him he is a demigod and trained him to fight with the pen/sword in his pocket. Somehow Percy manages to make it to a camp for half-bloods, despite the fact that he has to keep killing monsters along the way. But the camp doesn’t ring and bells with him. The only thing he can recall from his past is another name: Annabeth

Hazel is supposed to be dead. When she lived before, she didn’t do a very good job of it. Sure, she was an obedient daughter, even when her mother was possessed by greed. But that was the problem – when the Voice took over her mother and commanded Hazel to use her “gift” for and evil purpose, Hazel couldn’t say no. Now because of her mistake, the future of the world is at risk. Hazel wished she could ride away from it all on the stallion that appears in her dreams.

Frank is a klutz. His grandmother says he is descended from heroes and can be anything he wants to be, but he doesn’t see it. He doesn’t even know who his father is. He keeps hoping Apollo will claim him, because the only thing he is good at is archery – although not good enough to win camp war games. His bulky physique makes him feel like an ox, especially infront of Hazel, his closest friend at camp. He trusts her completely – enough to share the secret he holds close to his heart.

Beginning at the “other” camp for half-bloods and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second installment of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophesy of Seven.”

Reading level: Ages 10 & up
Hardcover: 544 pages
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH; First Edition edition (October 4, 2011)

REVIEW: 5 STARS – NOT TO BE MISSED!

OH MY GOSH!!!!!!!! I WANT MORE, MORE, MORE!!!

This series was written after the Percy Jackson series, and they compliment each other.  In this series, Percy has lost his memory and finds Camp Jupiter where he finds Frank and Hazel and goes on a quest.  Camp Jupiter is like Camp Halfblood except it isn’t based on the Greek gods like Camp Halfblood on Long Island–it is based on the Roman gods.  And Camp Jupiter is like the ‘new Rome.’

I enjoyed this because of the return of Percy Jackson as one of the primary characters. And this was an awesome read for anyone who likes ancient mythology like the Greek and Roman gods.  The adventures are super awesome!

Rick Riordan once again has worked his magic. I loved the conversation that happened near the end where Frank said his grandmother’s house is, “Just over the river and through the woods,” LoL! Haha, go Rick!

Compared to the previous series, I think I actually like this one better.  Because Percy’s up against a stronger force in this book.  It’s not just a Titian, but he has to deal with a goddess this time.  It makes it more interesting b/c she’s the goddess of the Earth, and she’s much more powerful.  She’s the most powerful goddess there has ever been.  Add to that that Gaia’s sending her kids after Percy and his friends and it’s a more exciting storyline.  If the two camps don’t cooperate, Gaia wins and everybody dies.  So major excitement!

RICK–YOU MADE ME A GREEK FREAK! THANK YOU!!! GO PERCY JACKSON!!!  And I’m dying for the MARK OF ATHENA to come out.  I will be reading that ASAP and let you know what I think!

Recommended for: Kids ages 10 & up, boys, girls – people who like adventure.  My parents read these too and enjoyed them.

Get SON OF NEPTUNE now via Amazon.  

Pssst!  The kindle edition is on sale for only $4.99!