Sunday, January 19, 2014

The House of Hades (The Heroes of Olympus #4) by Rick Riordan Review

Name: The House of Hades (The Heroes of Olympus #4)
Authors: Rick Riordan
Publisher: Hyperion Books
Release Date: October 8th, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Buy the book on Amazon
597 pages

At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy's instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea's forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

They have no choice. If the demigods don't succeed, Gaea's armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.

My Review:

Here is yet another wonderful example of a Percy Jackson book by Rick Riordan.  I have been reading these books ever since I was little and every time I decide that I’m too old to be reading middle grade books, I pick up one more of Riordan’s well-constructed and well-written books just to realize that I’m really never too old for them.

This book picked up right after the cliff-hanger at the end of the previous book, The Mark of Athena.  I’ll admit I can’t resist books that start right off the bat with action, and this one was no exception.  Annabeth and Percy find themselves travelling through the depths of Tartarus trying to find the Doors of Death in order to escape, and things down there are pretty grim—much more grim than most things in any of the Percy Jackson books.  While they are stuck, quite literally, in hell, the rest of the demigods on the Argo II are sailing their way to the other side of the Doors of Death, trying to both rescue their two stranded friends as well as seal the doors shut in order to prevent anyone else from escaping Tartarus.  They have their own fair share of troubles that, at times, seem just as difficult and dangerous as Percy and Annabeth’s problems.

One of the most impressive parts of this book was the fact that Riordan managed to write in the point of view of each of the seven members of the Argo II; that includes Percy Jackson, Annabeth Chase, Hazel Levesque, Leo Valdez, Frank Zhang, Jason Grace, and Piper McLean.  The only demigod on the Argo who did not have chapters with his own point of view was Nico di Angelo.  Riordan did a surprisingly wonderful job distinguishing between characters and making each demigod have their own unique voice, which can be difficult when there are only two narrators, let alone seven.  I never once had to check back to see which character was the narrator of that particular chapter; it was always evident just by the tone and even the words and phrases they used.

Overall, I would highly recommend the fourth installment in The Heroes of Olympus series to everyone who has ever read the Percy Jackson books, or anyone who wishes to.  Just remember: you’re never too old for a good old well-written middle grade book!

My Rating:

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