I found James incredibly hard to love in The Killing. From the first CHERUB book, you understand that he is a rebel and not exactly completely moral, but by the fourth book, he is incredibly; well, douche. But, after moving on from James’ stupidity, this is, like all the other CHERUB books (thus far) a great read, and highly recommended.
I loved this book. Not only did it talk about the prison system – something that actually slightly terrifies me, but it also showed Lauren in her own power and position. From her extra brutal experience of basic training (and the resultant shovel-incident) to her first assignment, Lauren shows her ability to hold her own and do right by others. The fact that James’ very masculine energy is contrasted against his sister’s highlights the ability for both genders to pursue the same tasks, albeit sometimes a little differently, but still effectively.
The second book in the Cherub series is a great follow up to The Recruit. From terrorism, we are thrown into the world of drugs and drug dealing. Once again, Muchamore’s understanding of the criminal underworld was brilliantly rendered and masterfully executed. Understanding how such industries are run, and the ways in which they can be bought down was something that I didn’t know much about, and discovering more of the information was very appreciated.
The fact that this is a spy story set in Britain just makes me ridiculously happy. There are so many stories that are based in America, so every time I read something that is so obviously not American. Combine this with the fact that it’s a story about kid spies – the series is a winning story. At least in my opinion.
As usual, Mercedes Lackey managed to seriously surprise me with this story. Similar to The Last Herald Mage trilogy, I knew that Brightly Burning would be a tragic tale – it’s mentioned in some of the other Valdemar books. But, it still hooked me and took me on an amazing journey through Lavan’s short, and sad journey.
Riordan tried a new tack in this story – in that he split the storyline into two stories, running parallel in time. It effectively split the story into the well-known characters of Percy and Annabeth, and the new arrivals in the Percy-verse. This gave the story such a variety and flavour that it was hard not to continue to flip the pages late into the night.
For me, The Mark of Athena was Annabeth’s story. She first had to test her pride and courage in Percy Jackson and the Battle of the Labyrinth, but it was this journey that really tested all that she was. Not only was she forced to strike out on her own and rely completely on her own skills, but Annabeth had a huge choice to make. Honour her mother’s wishes or save the others (and in the meantime, the world).
The Son of Neptune introduces yet another one of my favourite characters from the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. Nico completely plucked at my heartstrings throughout his story and his inability to fit in (even with children who tend to be misfits) made me feel some kind of kinship with him. He is still very dark and unhappy and has a layer of mystery surrounding him – it’s hard to tell whether he is on the side of the heroes, or willing to let the world fall.
I loved delving into the world of Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase again. For someone with an obsession with reading, Greek mythology and fantasy, this series is definitely one that has me coming back again and again – so the expansion of the Percy Jackson verse was kind of exciting. Plus, it begins a journey that is way more intense and epic than Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
All through the Percy Jackson and the Olympians books, I was waiting with baited breath to see if Percy was, in fact, the child of the prophecy. Alright, I was fairly certain he was (after all, he is the hero of the series), but first there as Thalia, and then Nico. So you couldn’t be sure. Then I started reading Percy Jackson and the Last Olympian, and the final battle begins. And what an epic final battle it was!