This time, it’s only Percy’s quest unintentionally, as he’s interested in rescuing his friend, while the Oracle has instead given the ostensible goal of the rescue of the goddess Artemis.
So the reader gets to follow along with additional updates to classic tales, and the dark side of helping heroes who typically let down the maidens who supported them in their success.
Naturally, this is a prejudice Percy has to fight throughout the tale, which culminates in an interesting scene with Athena:
I found myself face-to-face with a gray-eyed woman who looked so much like Annabeth I almost called her that.
“Athena.” I tried not to sound resentful, after the way she’d written me off in the council, but I guess I didn’t hide it very well.
She smiled dryly. “Do not judge me too harshly, half-blood. Wise counsel is not always popular, but I spoke the truth. You are dangerous.”
There are so many interesting twists to this book–I like the new background supplied for the Hesperides and the Huntresses–I remained thoroughly engaged… even on the third or fourth reading.
And I found out this morning from @BookaliciousPam that there is another Percy Jackson coming out in the very near future: The Son of Neptune. And this time Riordan has a whole site dedicated to “Olympian Week“–I have to say I’m stoked… And must have had some quiet prompting from the Oracle myself this week, to have been inspired to actually write my reviews of the books of the series at such a propitious time.
To that point: Anyone who is interested in a new take on the old myths, join the fan club. These are the best kind of fractured fairy tales in their re-imaging of the classics, and are deeply entertaining for young and old alike–I suspect even if you’re not typically a big fan of the fantasy genre.