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Percy Jackson's fifth and final adventure begins with a blast and gets increasingly more explosive. It reads less like a novel than a 400-page battle scene set in Manhattan, pitting Percy, Annabeth, Grover & Co. against a pantheon of monsters intent on reaching the portal to Mount Olympus (located on the 600th floor of the Empire State Building). In other words: fans will not be disappointed. All the action takes place in the days before Percy's 16th birthday, on which a prophecy has foretold "a single choice shall end his days." Readers who have watched their dyslexic hero grow into his considerable powers since age 12 will not be surprised by his brave leadership. Or as Percy, facing the Minotaur's army, puts it in typically wry fashion: "It was now roughly one hundred and ninety-nine to one. I did the natural thing. I charged them." Details about Luke's childhood explain his traitorous allegiance to Kronos; Annabeth and Rachel Dare vie for Percy's attention; and the final clash would keep a Hollywood special effects team busy for years. As the capstone to this beloved series, this story satisfies. And a surprise character takes on the mantle of Oracle, instantly issuing a new prophecy that suggests, happily, there's more fun with the demigods to come. Ages 10-up. (May)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
The fates of all of the characters are decided, and the true meaning of the prophecy is revealed in this final book in the series. Crafting a finale that lives up to plot developments and expectations created by an ongoing series can be a somewhat daunting task, but Riordan has fashioned a suitably epic battle to wrap up his tale, which begins with a very literal bang as Percy and Charlie Beckendorf go on a mission to destroy Kronos's ship, the Princess Andromeda . Charlie sacrifices himself to ensure the mission's success, and Percy returns alone to Camp Half-Blood only to hear the prophecy involving the choice he will have to make on his 16th birthday in its depressing entirety. While there is a distinct feeling of sadness in leaving these characters, the ending also leaves an opening for stories about new half-blood kids in the future. While readers are sure to be satisfied by the way everything is resolved, there are a few too many deus ex machina rescues in the final battle. The book's message that the Greek gods will die unless we remember them might be a bit simplistic, but the fact is that the "Percy Jackson" books have done a great deal to revitalize interest in mythology. This book is a no-brainer purchase, since most libraries will already have the previous four titles in the series and will have readers anxiously awaiting its arrival.-Tim Wadham, St. Louis County Library, MO
Up until then, I was having a great afternoon. Technically I wasn't supposed to be driving because I wouldn't turn sixteen for another week, but my mom and my stepdad, Paul, took my friend Rachel and me to this private stretch of beach on the South Shore, and Paul let us borrow his Prius for a short spin.
Now, I know you're thinking, Wow, that was really irresponsible of him, blah, blah, blah, but Paul knows me pretty well. He's seen me slice up demons and leap out of exploding school buildings, so he probably figured taking a car a few hundred yards wasn't exactly the most dangerous thing I'd ever done.
Anyway, Rachel and I were driving along. It was a hot August day. Rachel's red hair was pulled back in a ponytail and she wore a white blouse over her swimsuit. I'd never seen her in anything but ratty T-shirts and paint-splattered jeans before, and she looked like a million golden drachma.
"Oh, pull up right there!" she told me.
We parked on a ridge overlooking the Atlantic. The sea is always one of my favorite places, but today it was especially nice -- glittery green and smooth as glass, like my dad was keeping it calm just for us.
My dad, by the way, is Poseidon. He can do stuff like that.
"So." Rachel smiled at me. "About that invitation."
"Oh . . . right." I tried to sound excited. I mean, she'd asked me to her family's vacation house on St. Thomas for three days. I didn't get a lot of offers like that. My family's idea of a fancy vacation was a weekend in a rundown cabin on Long Island with some movie rentals and a couple of frozen pizzas, and here Rachel's folks were willing to let me tag along to the Caribbean.
Besides, I seriously needed a vacation. This summer had been the hardest of my life. The idea of taking a break even for a few days was really tempting.
Still, something big was supposed to go down any day now. I was "on call" for a mission. Even worse, next week was my birthday. There was this prophecy that said when I turned sixteen, bad things would happen.
"Percy," she said, "I know the timing is bad. But it's always bad for you, right?"
She had a point.
"I really want to go," I promised. "It's just -- "
I nodded. I didn't like talking about it, but Rachel knew. Unlike most mortals, she could see through the Mist -- the magic veil that distorts human vision. She'd seen monsters. She'd met some of the other demigods who were fighting the Titans and their allies. She'd even been there last summer when the chopped-up Lord Kronos rose out of his coffin in a terrible new form, and she'd earned my permanent respect by nailing him in the eye with a blue plastic hairbrush.
She put her hand on my arm. "Just think about it, okay?
We don't leave for a couple of days. My dad . . ." Her voice faltered.
"Is he giving you a hard time?" I asked.
Rachel shook her head in disgust. "He's trying to be nice to me, which is almost worse. He wants me to go to Clarion Ladies Academy in the fall."
"The school where your mom went?"
"It's a stupid finishing school for society girls, all the way in New Hampshire. Can you see me in finishing school?"
I admitted the idea sounded pretty dumb. Rachel was into urban art projects and feeding the homeless and going to protest rallies to "Save the Endangered Yellow-bellied Sapsucker" and stuff like that. I'd never even seen her wear a dress. It was hard to imagine her learning to be a socialite.
She sighed. "He thinks if he does a bunch of nice stuff for me, I'll feel guilty and give in."
"Which is why he agreed to let me come with you guys on vacation?"
"Yes . . . but Percy, you'd be doing me a huge favor. It would be so much better if you were with us. Besides, there's something I want to talk --" She stopped abruptly.
"Something you want to talk about?" I asked. "You mean . . . so serious we'd have to go to St. Thomas to talk about it?"
She pursed her lips. "Look, just forget it for now. Let's pretend we're a couple of normal people. We're out for a drive, and we're watching the ocean, and it's nice to be together."
I could tell something was bothering her, but she put on a brave smile. The sunlight made her hair look like fire.
We'd spent a lot of time together this summer. I hadn't exactly planned it that way, but the more serious things got at camp, the more I found myself needing to call up Rachel and get away, just for some breathing room. I needed to remind myself that the mortal world was still out there, away from all the monsters using me as their personal punching bag.
"Okay," I said. "Just a normal afternoon and two normal people."
She nodded. "And so . . . hypothetically, if these two people liked each other, what would it take to get the stupid guy to kiss the girl, huh?"
"Oh . . ." I felt like one of Apollo's sacred cows -- slow, dumb, and bright red. "Um . . ."
I can't pretend I hadn't thought about Rachel. She was so much easier to be around than . . . well, than some other girls I knew. I didn't have to work hard, or watch what I said, or rack my brain trying to figure out what she was thinking. Rachel didn't hide much. She let you know how she felt.
I'm not sure what I would've done, but I was so distracted, I didn't notice the huge black form swooping down from the sky until four hooves landed on the hood of the Prius with a WUMP-WUMP-CRUNCH!
Hey, boss, a voice said in my head. Nice car!
Blackjack the pegasus was an old friend of mine, so I tried not to get too annoyed by the craters he'd just put in the hood; but I didn't think my stepdad would be real stoked.
"Blackjack," I sighed. "What are you --"
Then I saw who was riding on his back, and I knew my day was about to get a lot more complicated.
" 'Sup, Percy."
Charles Beckendorf, senior counselor for the Hephaestus cabin, would make most monsters cry for their mommies. He was this huge African American guy with ripped muscles from working in the forges every summer. He was two years older than me, and one of the camp's best armorsmiths. He made some seriously ingenious mechanical stuff. A month before, he'd rigged a Greek firebomb in the bathroom of a tour bus that was carrying a bunch of monsters across country. The explosion took out a whole legion of Kronos's evil meanies as soon as the first harpy went flush.
Beckendorf was dressed for combat. He wore a bronze breastplate and war helm with black camo pants and a sword strapped to his side. His explosives bag was slung over his shoulder.
"Time?" I asked.
He nodded grimly.
A clump formed in my throat. I'd known this was coming. We'd been planning it for weeks, but I'd half hoped it would never happen.
Rachel looked up at Beckendorf. "Hi."
"Oh, hey. I'm Beckendorf. You must be Rachel. Percy's told me . . . uh, I mean he mentioned you."
Rachel raised an eyebrow. "Really? Good." She glanced at Blackjack, who was clopping his hooves against the hood of the Prius. "So I guess you guys have to go save the world now."
"Pretty much," Beckendorf agreed.
I looked at Rachel helplessly. "Would you tell my mom -- "
"I'll tell her. I'm sure she's used to it. And I'll explain to Paul about the hood."
I nodded my thanks. I figured this might be the last time Paul loaned me his car.
"Good luck." Rachel kissed me before I could even react. "Now get going, half-blood. Go kill some monsters for me."
My last view of her was sitting in the shotgun seat of the Prius, her arms crossed, watching as Blackjack circled higher and higher, carrying Beckendorf and me into the sky. I wondered what Rachel wanted to talk to me about, and whether I'd live long enough to find out.
"So," Beckendorf said, "I'm guessing you don't want me to mention that little scene to Annabeth."
"Oh, gods," I muttered. "Don't even think about it."
Beckendorf chuckled, and together we soared out over the Atlantic.
It was almost dark by the time we spotted our target. The Princess Andromeda glowed on the horizon -- a huge cruiseship lit up yellow and white. From a distance, you'd think it was just a party ship, not the headquarters for the Titan lord. Then as you got closer, you might notice the giant masthead -- a dark-haired maiden in a Greek chiton, wrapped in chains with a look of horror on her face, as if she could smell the stench of all the monsters she was being forced to carry.
Seeing the ship again twisted my gut into knots. I'd almost died twice on the Princess Andromeda. Now it was heading straight for New York.
"You know what to do?" Beckendorf yelled over the wind.
I nodded. We'd done dry runs at the dockyards in New Jersey, using abandoned ships as our targets. I knew how little time we would have. But I also knew this was our best chance to end Kronos's invasion before it ever started.
"Blackjack," I said, "set us down on the lowest stern deck."
Gotcha, boss, he said. Man, I hate seeing that boat.
Three years ago, Blackjack had been enslaved on the Princess Andromeda until he'd escaped with a little help from my friends and me. I figured he'd rather have his mane braided like My Little Pony than be back here again.
"Don't wait for us," I told him.
But, boss -- "Trust me," I said. "We'll get out by ourselves."
Blackjack folded his wings and plummeted toward the boat like a black comet. The wind whistled in my ears. I saw monsters patrolling the upper decks of the ship dracaenaesnake-women, hellhounds, giants, and the humanoid sealdemons known as telkhines -- but we zipped by so fast, none of them raised the alarm. We shot down the stern of the boat, and Blackjack spread his wings, lightly coming to a landing on the lowest deck. I climbed off, feeling queasy.
Good luck, boss, Blackjack said. Don't let 'em turn you into horse meat!
With that, my old friend flew off into the night. I took my pen out of my pocket, uncapped it, and Riptide sprang to full size -- three feet of deadly Celestial bronze glowing in the dusk.
Beckendorf pulled a piece of paper of out his pocket. I thought it was a map or something. Then I realized it was a photograph. He stared at it in the dim light -- the smiling face of Silena Beauregard, daughter of Aphrodite. They'd started going out last summer, after years of the rest of us saying, "Duh, you guys like each other!" Even with all the dangerous missions, Beckendorf had been happier this summer than I'd ever seen him.
"We'll make it back to camp," I promised.
For a second I saw worry in his eyes. Then he put on his old confident smile.
"You bet," he said. "Let's go blow Kronos back into a million pieces."
Beckendorf led the way. We followed a narrow corridor to the service stairwell, just like we'd practiced, but we froze when we heard noises above us.
"I don't care what your nose says!" snarled a half-human, half-dog voice -- a telkhine. "The last time you smelled halfblood, it turned out to be a meat loaf sandwich!"
"Meat loaf sandwiches are good!" a second voice snarled. "But this is half-blood scent, I swear. They are on board!"
"Bah, your brain isn't on board!"
They continued to argue, and Beckendorf pointed downstairs. We descended as quietly as we could. Two floors down, the voices of the telkhines started to fade.
Finally we came to a metal hatch. Beckendorf mouthed the words engine room.
It was locked, but Beckendorf pulled some chain cutters out of his bag and split the bolt like it was made of butter.
Inside, a row of yellow turbines the size of grain silos churned and hummed. Pressure gauges and computer terminals lined the opposite wall. A telkhine was hunched over a console, but he was so involved with his work, he didn't notice us. He was about five feet tall, with slick black seal fur and stubby little feet. He had the head of a Doberman, but his clawed hands were almost human. He growled and muttered as he tapped on his keyboard. Maybe he was messaging his friends on uglyface.com.
I stepped forward, and he tensed, probably smelling something was wrong. He leaped sideways toward a big red alarm button, but I blocked his path. He hissed and lunged at me, but one slice of Riptide, and he exploded into dust.
"One down," Beckendorf said. "About five thousand to go." He tossed me a jar of thick green liquid -- Greek fire, one of the most dangerous magical substances in the world. Then he threw me another essential tool of demigod heroes -- duct tape.
"Slap that one on the console," he said. "I'll get the turbines."
We went to work. The room was hot and humid, and in no time we were drenched in sweat.
The boat kept chugging along. Being the son of Poseidon and all, I have perfect bearings at sea. Don't ask me how, but I could tell we were at 40.19° North, 71.90° West, making eighteen knots, which meant the ship would arrive in New York Harbor by dawn. This would be our only chance to stop it.
I had just attached a second jar of Greek fire to the control panels when I heard the pounding of feet on metal steps -- so many creatures coming down the stairwell I could hear them over the engines. Not a good sign.
I locked eyes with Beckendorf. "How much longer?"
"Too long." He tapped his watch, which was our remote control detonator. "I still have to wire the receiver and prime the charges. Ten more minutes at least."
Judging from the sound of the footsteps, we had about ten seconds.
"I'll distract them," I said. "Meet you at the rendezvous point."
"Percy -- "
"Wish me luck."
I love this series!! Before I read them, Harry Potter was at the top of the list of my fav books. Now, it's #2, and #1 is Percy Jackson and the Olympians! It's got a modern spin on old legend and myths, not to mention humor. I LOVE humor. And sarcasm. That's good too. I'll admit, I'm sad to see it end, but I'm sure I'll read the books enough times to nearly memorize them. The first thing that caught my attention about these books were the chapter titles. I love how they make absolutely no sense until you actually read the book. I showed my friends and they're all, "What the HECK?" I did that at first too. Percy Jackson, if it was you against Harry Potter, even with his magic you would win in a battle. I'm sure Riptide could DEFINITELY help with that (Not to mention maybe some water, but that's ok if there's none, 'cause you're awesome). I've caught up on my reading lately, and now I need to read the rest once more before Tuesday! I can't wait for The Last Olympian!! :)
97 out of 112 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 1, 2010
You don't know a good book until you read The Last Olympian! Percy and his fiends fight to rid the world of Kronos and his cohorts in this epic tale of modern times and Greek mythology. It's a must read!
67 out of 73 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 13, 2009
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These books are some of the most imaginative I have ever read. I really like how you get to know the characters, and how they each arrive at Camp Half-Blood with their own personal problems. Rick Riordan writes the stories so well that it feels like your there right alongside Percy. I have not complained once about there being something that I didn't like in any of the books. They are so funny and random at times that I can't stop laughing. I have gotten friends into the series and their glad that I did. Now im just sad that it's going to end. And I guess that IS the only complaint I have. But I can't wait!
49 out of 53 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 8, 2008
my eyes are aching to read this book! i can't wait till percy and annabeth get together. i can't wait to read that prophecy of percy, i think the prophecy has a little to do with the romance between annabeth and percy, and also, of course, the fate of the world. i also know i'm definatley going to cry once this beautiful series is ended. well at least i might feel better by the fact that these books are becoming movies. you guys should also check out a website called blue trident 'fan site'. can't wait, can't wait.
29 out of 39 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 10, 2009
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This book was absolutely amazing! Not only did the author make this book very humerous and interesting, but it was also educational! There were many places in the book where the he referred to actual greek myths. I have read the whole series two times and will probably read it again soon! I would deffinately recommend this book to anyone who finds greek myths fascinating or even if you know nothing about them! This book is just an all around good book!!! :)
25 out of 31 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 21, 2009
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My daughter loved this book. I had her write the review....
She wrote, "The last Olympian is the last book of the lightning thief series. In the book Percy Jackson and his friends are on one quest to defeat Kronos from destroying the world. Rick Riordan is the best author ever, because this book will get your kids to want to learn and love Greek mythology. I think k you should read this book because of the adventure, tragedy and little romance. If you read this then you will not be bored".
24 out of 29 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 29, 2009
I have read all the previous books which I enjoyed very much. This book was also good although there were parts that were repetitive. I thought the ending was pretty cool.
20 out of 98 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 25, 2009
Rick Rioran is the best author in the WORLD! he's sooo discriptive, and he makes everything fun and thrilling! he also wrote another fav of mine "39 Clues" It's awsome!
19 out of 30 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
i read the hole thing around 26 hours after i bought it. o wish there was more! we all qant to see more of percy jackson with annebeth! er want to see if elizabith can handle being the orcal! i dont care if another book would be less then 100 pages we wont more even though this was the last! pecy jakson books should keep going not die! he is invunsable! we also want to see if athena will get angry and go to battle with posiden because percy and anabeth going out! we want to see what happens with all the new campers! WE WANT MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
17 out of 27 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
This is the last instalment in the series everyone loves "Percy jackson an the olympians". The end is here. There must be a war and we will finally see what the prophosy is all about!! After all these years since percy diccovered he was a demigod, after all the problems and battles and risking his life what will happen to him? Does he love Annabeth or Rachel Elizabeth Dare? What will happen to the gods and to olympus? there is only one way to find out!!
15 out of 19 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 17, 2009
I love these books, they are AMAZING. Ever sice the first grade, I have always loved to read books. My favorite books to read have always been fantasy books! During the summer I went and purchased a copy of The Lightning Thief. I started to read it and I couldn't stop!!! I was just so interested!!! After I read the first book, I went and purchased the rest of the series 1-4. I cant stop reading them! They are so interesting and I learn so much about Greek Mythology from These books I even checked out a book on Greek Mythology at the library. The books are about a young boy named Percy Jackson who is the son of Posiedon the see god and also one of the big three gods of Olympas. Him and his frinds Grover and Annabeth (also half bloods) face many challenges against the Titan lord Kronos. They face danger, betrayal, obstacales and many more includeing the profecy of The Titans curse! I Highly recomend these books for anyone who likes to read and also for people who dont!
11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 13, 2009
I was majorly looking forward to this book, but it turned out to not be as good as I expected. It was basically a good book, but in comparison, it could have been better. It wasn't as wonderful as the others and I just expected more out of it. It was okay, and if you've read the others, you should read it for the sake of completion.
7 out of 21 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 6, 2009
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"The Last Olympian," by Rick Riordan is the fifth and final installment in the New York Times #1 best-selling "Percy Jackson and the Olympians" series. Packed with a large plethora of surprising twists and turns, this book is suspenseful, humorous, and, of course, completely action-packed! Revealing many shocking truths, this novel is a fantastic finale to a hugely compelling series!
6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 5, 2009
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I know none of us have read this lasst installment to thre brilliant, humourous, and dramatic Percy Jackson Series, but if you have read the preceeding four books, you will know that this book is sure to be a winner. Try reading this instead of the Over-rated Twilight series. (Yes, i used to be a big fan of stephanie meyers, but please try to look at the books from a neuteral angle.) These books are a blend of everything, so please read and enjoy (I know i will!)
6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2009
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I cannot wait for this book to come out. So excited, I've read all the books out so far so many times! This book will be so exciting. I'm thrilled!I always hated reading, but then my best friend was getting The Sea of Monsters from the library so i decided to join him, not thinking about reading it. Suddenly, I find myself reading because my teacher tells me to, so i just skim, and even that grabs my attention. I start reading the series. First book 2, then 3, then 1, then 4. Later i decided to read it over and over again in order, and I'm still not tired. These books are worth more to me than a regular video game, because there are plenty of those. I don't know how much I would know about Greek mythology without them. They once even helped me on a presentation about Poseidon at school. I can't wait to see What's next. Thanks Rick Riordan.
6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 4, 2009
CullenBoy must not have even read the series yet he feels the need to blast it! Really and Twilight is really that much better? Anywho this is a great book to read out loud to your kids, I read them with my sister and her kids and loved them. I own the set so that when mine is old enough to read or listen to such an involved story it will be perfect. Great for boys who need to brush up on their reading skills as it will keep them entertained!
5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted April 7, 2009
oK hands down. down down people. this series is the bestest series ever like it 4rele is. its fun kool popular wutevs.i dont believe in the gods duh! but it does give me an understanding of greek mythology. yea yea yea kids u can actually get some education by reading the best book eva. the other books where obviously rele good but i think this book will b the best eva. and guess wut peeps that like percy jackson and not reading, on february 12th i think 2010 the percy jackson movie will come out and be the bestest movie eva in the history of movies! so that is basically all i hav to say but read the percy jackson series and it will change ur life 4eva!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 28, 2009
Before I started reading this series I hated reading.But now I love reading because I started reading the percy jackoson series (pj). First I liked to read the greek myths, then one day my mom recommended the lighting thief. So I read it and I loved it.I wanted to read the rest of the books in the series. Then I read the sea of monsters. I enjoyed it, but not as much as the lighting thief. After that I read the titans curse, and the strangest thing happened.When I opened the cover it was signed by the author,( I had the biggest happy attack of my life!)I think it was the funniest out of the series. After that I read the battle of the labyrinth. Great book that and the lighting thief are my favorites. Now Im almost done with the demigod files, and after that I will have to wait until the last olympian comes out. Im also recommending it to all my freinds. GO PERCY JACKSON!
5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.