Monday, 25 August 2014

Book Review - Sea of Monsters

Percy Jackson and The Sea of Monsters
Author: Rick Riordan
Series: Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2
Genres: Mythology, Urban Fantasy | Childrens
Release Date: 30th April 2007
Publishers: Disney-Hyperion
No. Pages: 265
Source: Borrowed
Buy From: Amazon | Book Depository | Barnes and Noble | Waterstones
After a summer spent trying to prevent a catastrophic war among the Greek gods, Percy Jackson is finding his seventh-grade school year unnervingly quiet. His biggest problem is dealing with his new friend, Tyson, a six-foot-three, mentally challenged homeless kid who follows Percy everywhere, making it hard for Percy to have any normal friends. But things don't stay quiet for long.

Percy soon discovers there is trouble at Camp Half-Blood: the magical borders that protect Half-Blood Hill have been poisoned by a mysterious enemy, and the only safe haven for demigods is on the verge of being overrun by mythological monsters. To save the camp, Percy needs the help of his best friend, Grover, who has been taken prisoner on an island somewhere in the Sea of Monsters, the dangerous waters Greek heroes have sailed for millennia. Only today, the Sea of Monsters goes by a new name: The Bermuda Triangle.

Together with his friends, Percy must retrieve the Golden Fleece from the Island of the Cyclopes or Camp Half-Blood will be destroyed. But first, Percy will learn a stunning new secret about his family, one that makes him question whether being claimed as Poseidon's son is an honour or simply a cruel joke.

The following review may contain spoilers concerning earlier books in the series.
If you have not read the previous installments, please proceed with caution.

In contrast difference, I read Sea of Monsters before I watched it and in a harsh contrast, I enjoyed Sea of Monsters much more than I did The Lightning Thief for one huge, rate making reason - I was fully connected to every single one of these characters, even developing strong connections to some over others and this is something I didn't have or do when I read the previous installment. Sea of Monsters gave me everything I wanted in a sequel, so much so, I forgot to make notes because it was that absorbing, all be it still lacking in just a little bit of world building.

As I've already said, I usually take notes when reading so that I pick up on issues I had and sing my praises on the amazing areas, but because Sea of Monsters plot and pacing was that absorbing, that intriguing and only a few occasions dry and bland, making notes was near enough forgotten. What I had managed to jot down and remember from reading the novel was that the opening few chapters were full of great action scenes, with very little quiet sections, whether that be from the dodge-ball scenes to the taxi scenes, to the camp scenes, they flowed easily to one another, never disconnected or felt forced together and the small reveals early on played out and complimented to set-up for the rest of novel. The overall pacing of the plot and scenes was almost perfect, with there being one or two parts of the novel that felt dry and disinterested me, but from the boats harbouring ghost guests and Kronos to the Sea of Monsters battle, to the island of the Cyclops, the world was built enough to encourage my own imagination, the creatures and scenes of any mythological elements were well executed and I enjoyed meeting more and gaining more knowledge on some of the creatures, items and places in Greek Mythology.

The spotlight stealing area in Sea of Monsters however goes to the characters. In The Lightning Thief I had dedicated a whole paragraph to how I couldn't connect to the characters that well, if at all, how I'd felt nothing towards them in any connecting or relatable way at all, but in Sea of Monsters, all of that changed, whether that be the relationship between Percy and Grover and there telepathic connection, to Percy and Tyson relationship, (I'll get to Tyson in a moment, I promise) to Percy and Annabeth's PAINFULLY slow romance that you can forming and budding under the surface, it was all so much different and so much better than previously. I loved Riordan's features of love that were much more noticeable in The Lightning Thief Film, that of friendships, partnerships, parents and other family relations, it was wonderful to see how each other them developed by themselves and by being surrounded by one another, making them both weaker and stronger in so many ways. Where-as previously I preferred Grover, I feel that Riordan's subtle reason for excluding Grover and including Tyson in this installment was to promote the difference in Percy towards Grover as a friend a 'like' a brother, to his relationship with Tyson being friend to actual brother. I also think it was wonderful to gain more history into Annabeth, Luke and Thalia's past and how they are hugely connected to the entire plot running throughout the series. Annabeth's warming to Tyson, to Tyson's love, care and appreciation for Percy is just perfect and I have no shame in admitting that I absolutely adored every single scene Tyson was in, let be battling to gain the Golden Fleece, to talking with Rainbow, to going off into the Sea to study, it was without a doubt, my favourite character and favourite feature throughout this installment, and I'll be sad if he doesn't feature much more throughout the series. I do however have on small, tiny, almost not important complaint about the romance, that of there being very little romance whatsoever. Please Riordan, get your sh*t together and just let me ship them properly, I'm only asking for one little, quick peck, please?

Sea of Monsters to me was all about developing the characters on a relationship front, while incorporating a smooth, quick and easy plot line, while also developing the overall plot line throughout the series. In so many ways, Percy Jackson and the Olympians reminds me of Harry Potter; a famous trio going on different adventures in each installment, all the while battling against a greater evil, and while this should annoy me, it doesn't, because Riordan feeds me these knowledgeable, interesting and wonderful scenes, more history behind Mythology and simple to follow and easy to read storylines. There's very little I disliked about this sequel, and if the series continues to grow and surpass it's predecessor, Titans Curse should be amazing too.


  1. I'm so glad you liked this one!!
    The series keeps getting better, I promise.
    Though the romance is lacking, but I blame that on the fact that it's technically middle-grade.

    1. Oh it definitely does, I can agree to that! :) The romance is because it's middle grade for sure!

  2. This gives me a lot of hope for the series, considering I didn't enjoy the first one very much. I am definitely determined to give this series a proper chance now, maybe it's one that just gets better and better as it goes on. I have them all out from the library now, even the follow up series, so I am ready to go. I think the slow romance will get to me, but they are quite young in the books so maybe that's why.

    1. I think it does improve quite a bit from the first, there's much more development, more vast inclusion of gods and such and so much more humour and depth, it's worth carrying on for sure!

  3. My daughters are fans of the movies, I should bring them the books :)

    1. I definitely think so, although, the books are a little more gory and dark, but still fantastic :)


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