Review: The Mark Of Athena

the mark of athenaThis review is spoiler-free!

Annabeth is terrified. Just when she’s about to be reunited with Percy – after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera – it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. As Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon masthead, Leo’s fantastical creation doesn’t appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace.

And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving demand: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find – and close – the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?

Annabeth’s biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he’s now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader, but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.

Well, I think I can now say that I have officially ended my Rick-Riordan-hiatus. The first book in his Heroes of Olympus series was meh and the second was decent, but THE THIRD BOOK WAS WONDERFUL and now I’m really excited for the final two.

Here are my thoughts on The Mark of Athena.

This series is just one big quest.

The Percy Jackson series was much more episodic, with five distinct quests (one for each book). I don’t feel that way about this new series. Maybe I was too hard on the previous books, The Lost Hero and The Son of Neptune, because Heroes of Olympus is just one long adventure, really. Every story has to begin somewhere, after all, and sometimes stories begin a little slowly.

By The Mark of Athena, the characters are halfway through their huge quest to stop Gaea from awakening. The adventure is hurtling along now, speeding towards a conclusion. I love it.

Percy and Annabeth are adorable together!

Honestly, I’m not surprised that it took me this long to notice. Their romance only started in, what, the fourth or fifth books? I don’t remember those books that well, so it makes sense that I didn’t care too much about Percabeth, as they’re sometimes called.

Those two are cute together, but my biggest reason for loving them is their past, pre-romantic relationship. I guess I think it’s cuter when two people were pals first. Percy and Annabeth didn’t immediately want to date one another. They weren’t shown as a couple right away, either, with no indication of how they ended up together. No, they spent four or five years questing together and being dorks and eventually friends, and then boyfriend and girlfriend.

I don’t know. Maybe this doesn’t make sense to anyone else. But I loved reading the Percabeth scenes in The Mark of Athena and thinking about how far those two have come from the first time they met at Camp Half-Blood.

Where Annabeth’s first words to Percy were, “You drool in your sleep.” Classy.

I liked the narrators so much! Especially since Annabeth was one of them!

The Lost Hero featured Piper, Jason, and Leo. I couldn’t stand the first two.

The Son of Neptune was told by Frank, Hazel, and Percy. I liked the first two, I suppose, but I didn’t love them. They weren’t completely dull like Piper and Jason, but they certainly had their moments.

The Mark of Athena was narrated by Piper, Leo, Percy, and Annabeth. ANNABETH! Her chapters nearly canceled out all the Piper-ness! Seriously, though, I am so happy that Annabeth narrated. The Percy Jackson books was always told by Percy, of course, so it’s great to see another equally awesome character tell the story for a while.

I might be biased here, though, because one of my dorky-fictional-crushes is Annabeth Chase. She’s SO SMART and creative and brave – I was so proud of her for fighting Arachne! – and oh my god what a nerd. (“Oh my god, what a nerd” is Engie-speak for “absolutely perfect.”)

P.S. Annabeth and Reyna totally have a thing for each other too, don’t they? It’s rather hilarious because you can see that Riordan tried to set it up as “omg, Reyna tried to steal Seaweed Brain from Annabeth!” However, it comes across as “omg Annabeth, Percy’s so lucky to have you and I can see why he wouldn’t want to leave you since you’re so smart and perfect and I possibly have a crush on you.” At least that’s how I interpreted it. Give me a shout-out in the comments below if you agree, OK?

I LOVE THE MYTHS RETOLD IN THIS BOOK.

Oh my gods, Hercules! And Echo! And Narcissus! And Arachne!

…I can’t believe I’d never realized that Hercules hadn’t been included until now, but it’s true. I forgot. And when he appeared, I cheered, even though he turned out to be kind of a jerk. Because Hercules. I wrote a short story about his twelve labors once.

The characters are finally in Rome, and soon they’ll go to Greece!

This is yet another thing I should’ve realized earlier: These two series talk and talk and TALK about Greco-Roman mythology, but none of their featured quests ever actually included Greece or Rome. Until now. It makes me super-happy to see Percy, Annabeth, and their friends finally in the lands where this whole messy story started.

-~-

I enjoyed The Mark of Athena very much. I wouldn’t say that it was perfect, that it deserves five-star status, but was reading it a blast? Yes. I look forward to reading The House of Hades… if I can ever find it at the library. It seems like all the copies are always checked out!

What is your opinion of The Mark of Athena?

Rating: 3.5/5

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About nevillegirl

Elizabeth. University of Iowa class of 2019. Triple majoring in English & Creative Writing, Journalism, and Gender, Women's, & Sexuality Studies. Twenty-one-year-old daydreamer, introvert, voracious reader, aspiring writer, and lesbian. Passionate about feminism, mental health, comic books, and cats.
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22 Responses to Review: The Mark Of Athena

  1. DK says:

    Um…I’m sort of here-and-there with MoA, honestly. Honestly, I couldn’t stomach the Percabeth. I liked it a lot more in the original PJO series. I don’t know why, but I don’t like the sweet, gooey moments that they seem to share. It felt…I don’t know, weak, somehow. I felt like the Percabeth in the original series had a lot more…purpose. Does that make sense, at all?

    I quite like all the Leo scenes in this one. Especially with that Archimedes sphere. And your take on Annabeth/Reyna is epic. Though, I’m personally a Leo/Reyna shipper. (Riordan, why do you destroy my dreams of this pairing being canon?)

    • nevillegirl says:

      Yeah, I think I can see that. Because they were the main characters of that series, right? And now they’re a little more extraneous, just kind of along for the ride, with no real purpose other than nostalgia.

      YES! Omg. Leo. He’s such a troublemaking little nerd. Which is my favorite kind of person. 😛

      Thank you. :3 They’re SO CUTE together.
      Do Leo and Reyna even have many scenes together? xD I can’t remember many, or actually any for that matter. I think they’d be cute together too, but for the life of me I can’t remember if they’ve even talked.
      …IDK maybe it’s just that Leo/machinery is a perfect beautiful couple and I just can’t stand the thought of anyone getting in the way of that epic romance.

  2. Bonnie says:

    The Mark of Athena was pretty darn good (and look at that cover wow), but The House of Hades is just THE BEST I LOVE IT SO MUCH! Percy and Annabeth are so friggin cute, and Hazel gets a bit more developed. And then there’s the whole Nico thing which just made me happy. So yes read it as soon as you can. 😀

    • nevillegirl says:

      I LOVE THE COVER! IT’S ONE OF THE BEST OUT OF ALL OF RIORDAN’S BOOKS. 😀

      Actually, I managed to find a copy of HoH! I just need to finish The Maze Runner and then I can start it. 🙂

    • nevillegirl says:

      I LOVE IT. I’m only about halfway through (I read like 200 pages in maybe an hour, it was so good) and just… wow. WOW. It’s perfect. VERY original, which can’t be said about many recent YA dystopians. I already know it’s going to be one of my favorite books read this year. 🙂

  3. Bonnie says:

    I kind of read the trilogy (there’s four books total, and I’ve read the trilogy but not the prequel) in two days . . . XD
    The Grievers were freaking terrifying. I couldn’t get to sleep when I read it the first time, but that gave me more time to stay up late and keep reading . . . I seriously couldn’t put them down.

    • nevillegirl says:

      Pfft. I’ve done that too, with Catching Fire and Mockingjay.

      I know, right? And I’m still so confused about WHAT IS GOING ON IN THIS MAZE and WHY ARE THOSE KIDS THERE.

      • Bonnie says:

        Yeah, it kinda makes more sense later, but it’s still really freaking twisted and creepy. I was very pleased with the sequels as well, which is really surprising, and it made me happy because sequels are never as good.

    • nevillegirl says:

      I finished The Maze Runner!! And… wow. Also, the sequels aren’t at the library because other people have borrowed them! *pouts* I went there today, so excited to finish the series, and… *bookworm sigh*

      • Bonnie says:

        *joins you in bookwormly sighing* Well, if you want to spew your fangirly ramblings at someone, send me a PM on Nano. I’m good at squealing happily about books XD

  4. Bane says:

    We read the Maze Runner last year in English class, moved onto the Scorch Trials, and got about 3/4 through the Death Cure before the school year ended, but I remember liking those books. I even bought Death Cure so I finished it before anyone else did. uwu What part are you at?

    I read Mark of Athena a looong time ago so I honestly don’t remember a thing about it except the ending, and I think I liked Percabeth better in PJO. I dont know why; I feel like it was more natural? Idk don’t mind me.

    • nevillegirl says:

      Are the sequels just as good as the first book?
      I’m about halfway through and Thomas is about to begin his first day as a Runner with Minho. 🙂

      Hey, it’s cool with me. As long as you like Percabeth in one of the series/books… 😛

  5. Bane says:

    Yeah, they’re pretty good, too.

    I though Percabeth was really cute in PJO, but my lack of enthusiasm for it now just might be due to the fact that I’m not keeping up with HoO as consistently or as often as I would like. I’m going to have to get back into them.

  6. Zezee says:

    Meh. I think the characters were too focused on their relationships but I did enjoy reading Riordan’s twist to the Greek characters. Narcissus on Youtube! That was hilarious!

  7. Pingback: “The House of Hades” by Rick Riordan | Zezee with Books

  8. Erin says:

    Percabeth! *squeals* I ship them to Tartarus and back again.

    I personally enjoyed Son of Neptune the best out of all the books in the series so far, but Mark of Athena definitely wasn’t bad. I agree that I liked the narrators. Percy, Annabeth, and Leo are my favorite characters in HoO. I don’t care for Piper though – she’s so bland (so is Jason, but don’t even get me started on how much I want to hit Jason on the head with a frying pan).

  9. Pingback: Book Review: “The Mark of Athena” | The Cheap Reader

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