Title: Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters
Author: Rick Riordan
Series: Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2, Camp Half-Blood Chronicles #2
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Easy reading, Mythology, Urban Fantasy
5th sentence, 74th page: ‘To your mark!’
I loved this continuation of Riordan’s journey into the world of Greek mythology. This time, he wrote a new spin on the tale of Polyphemus’ defeat. It is difficult to take a well-known tale and put a new spin to it. You know how it will end, but wanting to travel on the journey is the key to such a feat. And Riordan does this beautifully. The fact that Percy is actually following in his namesakes steps just helps to add to the potency of this story. Intertwined with this, the further explanation of Pan’s demise in today’s society carried both a strong message, and a great story.
Pan is the very personification of nature in Greek mythology – he literally is the natural world. And his disappearance is alluded to in Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief. But, Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters gives us far more insight into how our own actions and the modernisation of the world has damaged nature himself. His total disappearance from the world and the confusion that the Satyrs feel at this reverberates through my own life. The necessity of conservation and ecological management is such a powerful message and this idea resonates throughout my very soul.
Throughout the Percy Jackson and the Olympians books, the idea of fate and destiny are integral to the storyline. Primarily in the shape of The Oracle of Delphi’s prophecies. I’m always fascinated by this concept. It’s often shown to be inescapable, but whether it is through our actions, or the attempts at avoiding a predicted fate. The use of prophecies highlights this, but it also helps to show that there can be multiple meanings in our fates and multiple destinations. This is shown throughout Clarisse’s journey as she fights against the terrifying future which faces her, and finds an entirely different outcome than expected.
I loved getting to know Clarisse a bit better throughout the journey. It not only helped to create layers to her character, but also illustrated that the actions undertaken by an individual can have multiple sources. The feeling of sympathy that you felt just by reading her journey is echoed by Percy’s sudden understanding of her brash and bullying behaviour.
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