The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
I've been continuing the adventure with the seven half-bloods as they answer the call.
I'm starting to think that the one who won't survive the journey will be me.
Annabeth is terrified. Just when she's about to be reunited with Percy—after six months of being apart, thanks to Hera—it looks like Camp Jupiter is preparing for war. As Annabeth and her friends Jason, Piper, and Leo fly in on theArgo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon masthead, Leo's fantastical creation doesn't appear friendly. Annabeth hopes that the sight of their praetor Jason on deck will reassure the Romans that the visitors from Camp Half-Blood are coming in peace.(Source: Goodreads)
And that's only one of her worries. In her pocket Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving demand: Follow the Mark of Athena. Avenge me. Annabeth already feels weighed down by the prophecy that will send seven demigods on a quest to find—and close—the Doors of Death. What more does Athena want from her?
Annabeth's biggest fear, though, is that Percy might have changed. What if he's now attached to Roman ways? Does he still need his old friends? As the daughter of the goddess of war and wisdom, Annabeth knows she was born to be a leader, but never again does she want to be without Seaweed Brain by her side.
Good lord, where do I start?
I can start with how with each book I'm pretty sure I'm getting an ulcer, or I can start with all the feels I can't hold.
We'll start with the ships.
The only ships I'm positive about right now are Percabeth and .... come to think of it, do Jason and Piper have a couple name?
It's probably an unpopular opinion, but I ship the hell out of Leo and Hazel.
Frank is adorable, don't get me wrong, he and Hazel have good chemistry together, too. However, something about the way Leo and Hazel are both sort of misfits just makes me what to push them together and don't even get me started on Leo's Great-Grandfather being Hazel's long lost Sammy because that just made me want this ship more.
I have a soft spot for Leo. He, in my opinion, is the most relatable character by far and I just want him to be happy. Sadly, I fear that just by wanting that for him, I've cursed him to be unhappy in the end. I just pray, "Please Mr. Riordan, don't kill him!"
Percy and Annabeth are the perfect couple. Hands down. They aren't overbearingly lovely-dovey all the while being completely and undeniably in love. The way they protect each other makes me insanely happy. When Annabeth threw her dagger in the water, having the utter trust that, not only would she get her dagger back, but that Percy would find her and save her from Octavian (who I knew was a freaking whackadoo) I just couldn't even with how perfect that scene was. Wow, man, just wow. I'll take a relationship like that over ANY other "I want a relationship like..." any day. For real. Wow. Percy is best boyfriend, where do I get one?
Jason and Piper. Poor Piper, but also good Piper! Piper desires more from Jason and doesn't even think to use her Charmspeak to get it from him. Way to go, Pipes! Most girls would have caved and used it to get what they wanted already. Piper doesn't want to use any of her talents as a child of Aphrodite to get what she wants, and that is so respectable we just gotta clap her on the back and say "Good for you!"
How Mr. Riordan is able to write convincing 16 year old girls, I have no idea, but he writes them well.
Alright, Enough about ships and characters. Let's move on to the plot.
Holy crap. We're getting close and the earth, Aka: Gaea is only getting stronger.
Think about it for a second, just how terrifying it would be if the earth, the only planet we have to live on, wanted to kill us all.
Now imagine, that only you and 6 friends can save the entirety of humanity and the Gods when you're all mere mortals yourself.
One of you is carrying the honor of their Godly mother on their shoulders and has to go alone.
It's a lot to handle.
I love how each character has their own doubts about the trials they are facing (except Coach Hedge, I suppose.) The weight of the world is literally on their shoulders, and more than once it is mentioned that both Percy and Annabeth wish the task they faced was as easy as holding the weight of the sky. Yikes.
I loved it though, this book could very well be my favorite out of them all so far.
Another thing I want to touch, in my long-winded review (is this technically a review? I don't know. I may need a better format to follow) is the fact that the covers are getting increasingly terrifying!
I saw the cover for The Mark of Athena and my first thought was, "Oh god, no.. Percy and Jason are going to turn on each other!"
I was happy that it wasn't what I thought it was going to be, but then I saw the cover for House of Hades while I was at the store and nearly started sobbing. I'm terrified to start the next book. So much so, that I won't be starting it right away. I'll be finishing Blood Magic by Tessa Gratton before I move on to The House of Hades.
This one is actually hard to choose. There were quite a few in this one. So I'll pick my top three.
“Like water leaking through a dam," said Piper."Yeah," smiled Percy. "We've got a dam hole."
"What?" Piper asked."Nothing," he said. "Inside joke.”
“I'm the Super-sized McShizzle, man!" Leo said. "I'm Leo Valdez, bad boy supreme. And the ladies love a bad boy.”
"Save yourselves!" Percy warned. "It is too late for us!"
Then he gasped and pointed to the spot where Frank was hiding. "Oh, no! Frank is turning into a crazy dolphin!"
"I said," Percy repeated, "Frank is turning into a crazy dolphin!"
Frank stumbled out of nowhere, making a big show of grabbing his throat. "Oh, no," he said, like he was reading from a teleprompter. "I am turning into a crazy dolphin."
He began to change, his nose elongating into a snout, his skin becoming sleek and gray. He fell to the deck as a dolphin, his tail thumping against the boards.
The pirate crew disbanded in terror, chattering and clicking as they dropped their weapons, forgot the captives, ignored Chrysaor's orders, and jumped overboard.”