Rick Riordan – The Titan’s Curse (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #3) | Review

IT’S NOT EVERYDAY YOU FIND YOURSELF IN COMBAT WITH A HALF-LION, HALF-HUMAN.
But when you’re the son of a Greek god, it happens. And now my friend Annabeth is missing, a goddess is in chains and only five half-blood heroes can join the quest to defeat the doomsday monster.
Oh, and guess what? The Oracle has predicted that not all of us will survive…

★★★★★ 561456

I am so glad I finally picked this one up and read it. I expected it to be fun and lighthearthed and it was. I love the Percy Jackson world and it always makes me happy. Since this book is quite short, I managed to fly through it in just two days and it put me in a mood when I want to read ten books per day (obviously impossible).

Just like other Percy Jackson books, this one was action-packed from the very beggining and I could not put it down. I had to know what was happening and I constantly needed more of Percy kicking some monster’s butt. The plot continues where the second book left off and we got to see some new aspects of Greek mythology (aside from funny parts, Greek mythology is my favourite thing about this series) and the way all these Greek myths are put together in the modern world always leaves me mindblown. I need to say this: Rick Riordan is a genius.

I love Percy as a protagonist. He is probably one of my favourite main characters ever. He’s a king of sass and I love him so much. He always manages to make me smile and I often find myself laughing out loud while reading these books. Aside from his sass, he’s also a great hero and a friend and I wish I knew someone like him in my real life.
Aside from old characters, we had a lot of new characters in this one, which I did not really like. I found Zoe to be extremely annoying and I could not stand her at all, but at the end I started to appreciate her character a bit more. I also did not like Bianca, but I did not change my opinion on her as the book went on. When it comes to Nico, I like that little boy a lot. I just wanted to hug him. He’s just the cutest.
Talia is one very interesting character and I have very mixed feelings about her. I think she’s very cool and kickbutt, but sometimes I just could not stand her (but I guess that’s because the book is narrated by Percy, so I kind of felt the way he felt in all these different situations). However, I decided that I like Talia, but I do not like the decision she made at the end of the book. That disappointed me a lot.
When it comes to ships, I am very confused. I ship everyone with everyone. But, of course, Percabeth! I love how we got only a tiny little bit of what is going to happen between them in the next books (hopefully!). They’re just perfect for each other.

I don’t think I have a lot to say about the writing style because I don’t want to be repetitive. This book was very entertaining and easy to read. Thrilling and funny, it was all I needed to relax from school and celebrate the beginning of summer break (though this one actually takes place in winter, but I did not know that before I started reading it – idiot). Rick Riordan is my hero and I love his writing a lot. After I’m done with Percy Jackson, I will definitely be reading his other books. As I already said, genius.

Even thouh these books are technically middle-grade, I recommend them to everyone, no matter how old you are. Popular opinion is that everyone can enjoy Percy and his adventures, so if you didn’t, definitely give these books a try.

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Holly Black & Cassandra Clare – The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1) | Review

Most kids would do anything to pass the Iron Trial.
Not Callum Hunt. He wants to fail.
All his life, Call has been warned by his father to stay away from magic. If he succeeds at the Iron Trial and is admitted into the Magisterium, he is sure it can only mean bad things for him.
So he tries his best to do his worst – and fails at failing.
Now the Magisterium awaits him. It’s a place that’s both sensational and sinister, with dark ties to his past and a twisty path to his future.
The Iron Trial is just the beginning, for the biggest test is still to come…

★★★★☆ 20578940

I had a lot of problems with this book and I feel a huge relief now when I finally finished it. Now, before I go more in depth about my thoughts on this book, I would like to say that I am not trying to hate the book or authors or anything, this is just my opinion.

I find this book to be very unoriginal. First, before I even started the book, I was kind of expecting something simmilar to Harry Potter because on the cover we have these three kids and a death eater (I can’t help it, I just call this guy death eater), and the back says it’s about this magic school, so yeah. However, I heard some great reviews on this book so I went into it expecting it to be awesome. I went into it open-minded and I was really hoping there are not much simmilarities with HP. Oh, how wrong I was.
I really liked these first couple of pages and I was really looking forward to this book, but then the actual plot started and I was surprised, but not in a good way. Not that the book reminded me of HP, but it reminded me even more of Percy Jackson. Especially the first part of the book when Call was trying to fail the Iron Trial. Later, I lost that PJ feel, but I started to find more and more simmilarities to Harry Potter and that bugged me so much. About one third in, I put the book down, read four other books, and then I decided I should pick it up again and just finish it. Simmilarities still bothered me, but the plot started picking up and the very slow begginning suddenly turned into very fast.past ending. I did enjoy the last third of the book the best, but I still think it was too rushed and we got a ton of information just thrown at us, completely at random, and I didn’t like that. The big reveal at the end was definitely unexpected and I think that idea itself was amazing and very cool, but in my opinion, the execusion of it was not vary well done, which is kind of disappointing.

I had a huge problem with out main character, Call. I just couldn’t make myself to like him. I find him very reckless, but not in a good way, and also very stupid. However, there is one thing about him that I like. I think it was very cool to use a disabeled person as a hero of the story, especially in middle.grad novel, because it shows people that it doesn’t matter who you are or what you can or can’t do, everyone can be a hero, and that’s just awesome.
I have mixed feelings about Tamara. Sometimes, especially at the beginning of the book, I really didn’t like her, but later, when we got to know her a bit better, I started to like her, but I feel like we didn’t see enough of her. He has a huge potential to become an awesome character, but she didn’t really get her chance in this book.
Aaron is probably my favourite character. Just like Tamara, I think he has some great potential, but authors didn’t really bother to develop his character a bit more, which makes me sad, because I really like him. When we found out this ”thing” about him, I was completely surprised because I expected that would happen to Call, not to him, but I found that to be cool. And then, when we found out the ”big thing about Call” (trying not to spoil here), I already saw all the complications that will make in Call and Aaron’s friendship in the future. I’m very excited about that, though.
Jasper reminded me so much of Draco Malfoy, I just couldn’t help it. Only the poor version. Because of that, I actually liked him at the beginning of the book, but later I realized he is not Draco and he’s just a jerk so I started to hate him.
Celia was just annoying, and Drew was completely underdeveloped as a character which is another huge disappointment.
Enemy was so Voldemort, everyone shoud admit that. That’s probably the biggest simmilarity to HP. Even the big twist, for which I said I think it’s awesome, reminded me of Harry Potter and the thing we find out in Deathly Hallows, but I try to get over that.

I really wanted to like this book since it’s co-written by one of my favourite authors of all time, but I guess I like the Shadowhunters better… The writing style itself was actually really good, great for a middle-grade novel, but the story was just disappointing. This series has a huge potential and I hope next books are better, but what really put me off was the fact that none of the stuff that happened in this book were convincing enough and all of it was too rushed and underdeveloped and a whole.

I’m not sure if I’m going to continue with the series, though I will probably pick the second book up when it comes out, only because of curiosity. I believe younger audience would really enjoy this book, because it’s still a good and fun read, but I guess I just expected too much from it.

Luc Besson – Arthur and the Minimoys (Arthur #1) | Review

Deep underground, the Minimoys are waiting . . . for a champion. Arthur’s grandfather disappeared four years ago. All he left behind are his notebooks full of stories about the Minimoys, a miniature people who are all less than one inch tall! But the Minimoys can’t possibly be real . . . can they? Ten-year-old Arthur is about to find out, as a hidden message catapults him on an adventure wilder than he had ever imagined. He’ll face mosquito-riding soldiers, a malevolent wizard, giant centipedes, and one very independent princess . . . and along the way he might discover that the littlest heroes can make the biggest difference.

★★★☆☆ 1285413

This book has been sitting on my shelf for years. Literally. It’s in my possesion since 2006. I thought it was about time for me to finally read it. I didn’t expect much, so I was not disappointed. The whole idea is actually quite interesting and I found myself really liking the world of Minimoys. Although, it could’ve been executed a bit better. The world building itself was not very neat and I kept wondering about stuff that were quickly mentioned, but never actually explained.

At the beginning everything starts slow and I was struggling to continue on. Only halfway through the book Arthur actually gets into the world of Minimoys and from that point plot is so fast paced and just crazy. It was all a bit predictable and obvious, but since this is a children’s book, I couldn’t really expect some huge plot twists. There were few exciting scenes which made the whole adventure interesting, but nothing really big and interesting actually happened throughout the whole book. The cliffhanger at the end, however, was very good and it makes you want to read the sequel because at the end of this one, you basically know nothing except that shit’s gonna go down in the next book.

I did not like any of the characters. At all. Arthur was way too perfect and I didn’t buy all this hero and a golden kid presentation. I found him annoying and stupid at times. Yeah, I know, he’s just a kid, but he’s not a very bright kid. I couldn’t connect with him and I couldn’t make myself to like him. Nope. I also didn’t like Selenia. She was portrayed as a total bitch and I really don’t see why Arthur though she was so special. She was arrogant, mean and very annoying. At the beginning, I was actually starting to like her because she was a badass, but later it all became only annoying and she really had no reason to act like that. Beta was the only character I kind of liked. Kind of. I found him incredibly cute and I felt sorry for him when everyone else were looking down on him. That was so unfair. However, later in the book he also became a bit annoying. Not like other two main characters, but still annoying. Also, relationships between characters were way too unbelievable and strange. I did not buy this Selenia/Arthur romance. First, they are supposed to be the same age, but Selenia is portrayed much more mature than Arthur. While reading, I had a feeling like Selenia is 16 or something, and Arthur 10, even though they are both 10 or so. Weird and unrealistic. I would rather say that Beta and Arthur were the same age.

The writing style was very… interesting. It felt more like reading a screenplay rather than a book. Which is understandable since Luc Besson is actually a movie director, and not a writer. It was very movie-like, and I guess that’s one of the reasons why this book was so fast paced. The narrative was nice and neat, but action packed scenes happened way too fast and it all became confusing at times. And one thing that really bothered me was that in one line we follow Arthur’s grandma in the living room, and then, without space or any other separation, we follow Arthur in the attic in second line. Then few lines later, we’re with grandma again. I got so confused, because this is what they do in movies, but this tehnique doesn’t work well in books.

So in my opinion, Luc Besson should stick to directing and leave writing books for someone else. I’m not saying this was bad, I still had a lot of fun reading this book, but it could’ve been done way better. I would recommend this book only to very young readers, because everyone who has some reading experience is going to notice all the flaws. But it’s still enjoyable.

This book (and the entire trilogy) has been made into an animated movie, directed by Luc Besson, of course. In my opinion, movie is better than the book, but that’s just me.

Rick Riordan – The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2) | Review

The heroic son of Poseidon makes an action-packed comeback in the second must-read installment of Rick Riordan’s amazing young readers series. Starring Percy Jackson, a “half blood” whose mother is human and whose father is the God of the Sea, Riordan’s series combines cliffhanger adventure and Greek mythology lessons that results in true page-turners that get better with each installment. In this episode, The Sea of Monsters, Percy sets out to retrieve the Golden Fleece before his summer camp is destroyed, surpassing the first book’s drama and setting the stage for more thrills to come. 

★★★★★ 28186

The sequel was even better than the first book, and I believe that The Titan’s Curse is going to be even better than the first two. I love the world and all the characters, but my favourite aspect of this book (and the entire series) are all those myths and stories from Greek mythology which are wrapped up in the story and the plotline so nicely and on such a fun way that I couldn’t stop smiling while reading this book. Percy Jackson has a special place in my heart and it’s on a good way to become my favourite middle-grade series of all time (yeah, it’s a great competition to Harry Potter).

The plot was even more exciting than in the first book, there were a lot more monsters and different myths which I loved so much. I loved the action and how Percy kept getting in trouble before he even got rid of the previous one. There were a lot of unexpected plot twists from the beginning so when I once started reading, I just couldn’t put the book down (which also made my mum crazy because I was supposed to help her with the housework, but whatever). In The Sea of Monsters the real problems start to show and this book sets foundation for problems in next books. Also, the huge cliffhanger this book ends on is just so exciting that it makes me want to pick up the third book, The Titan’s Curse, right away.

Characters are still amazing and I still love them all. Percy is still sassy and awesome, Grover is still fun and cool, Annabeth is still smart and kick-ass, Luke is still a jerk. But we also meet some new characters, who are super-interesting. Tyson was an amazing character and I really love him a lot. Also, his relationship with Percy is great, it almost made me teary-eyed at times. Tantalus was such an annoying character, I just wanted to punch him every time he spoke. Gods, that guy frustrated me so much. Clarisse went through huge character development in this book and I actually started to like her, and I hope this would continue in the next book as well. As I said, all the characters are fantastic and so well done, I just want to hug them all and never let go. They definitely have a special place in my heart.

Rick Riordan managed to make a fun, interesting world full of possibilities and he knows it so he definitely uses all those possibilities. I absolutely love his writing style, it fun and easy to read, but also intense and action-packed. And, of course, very emotional at times. If I ever need a pick-me-up book, I know that I’ll be picking up Percy Jackson because these books can always make me smile and that’s what makes a good book, right? Another thing that made me smile were these extra pages at the end of the book where is a short description of all important Gods and monsters that appeared in this book. So cool, I laughed so hard at that.

If you haven’t read these books yet, I definitley recommend them to you because these are just awesome, if you didn’t get that from my review by now. It doesn’t matter how old you are, I assure you that anyone can enjoy these books.

There is also a movie based on this book and even though it’s so different from the book, I really enjoyed it. In my opinion, it was very well done and just so much fun. Definitely recommend that one, too

Related:
Rick Riordan – The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1)

Rick Riordan – The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1) | Review

Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse-Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy’s mom finds out, she knows it’s time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he’ll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends — one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena — Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.

★★★★★ 28187

I have no idea why it took me so long to start these series. Yes, this was the first time I read this book. I absolutely loved Greek mythology and I way kind of obsessed with it since forever, but this book just made me love it even more. Absolutely fantastic. Epic! I don’t mind that main characters were twelve-year-olds, at all. Actually, if I didn’t know, I’d never guess they’re that young. If felt like they were just my age. The writing style was so fun and easy to read, I often found myself laughing out loud, I just couldn’t help it, it was such a fun read. Also, the plot, all these scenes and all the references to Greek mythology blew me away. So good! I expected this book to be good, but I have to admit, I didn’t expect to love it as much as I do. I know I have no right to say this but: If you haven’t read this book yet, what are you doing with your life? Go read it immediately, it’s absolutely amazing and I actually start considering it a middle-grade classic, alongside Harry Potter. I’m so happy I finally picked it up and I can’t wait to continue on with the series, I believe it’s going to get only better.

SPOILER PART – if you haven’t read the book yet, I recommend not to read any further, go and read the book and then come back.

First, I have to say my opinion on differences between the book and the movie. I watched the movie twice before I read the book and I totally loved it. It was fantastic and it made me want to read the book. Even though I was told that the movie was nothing like the book and I started reading with that knowlege, I was still surprised by all the differences. However, I love both the book and the movie and I can’t decide which one I consider better. They are both great on their own ways and I enjoyed both so I’ll just stop comparing those two and look on them as two completely different works because they are completely different.

I already said how funny this book is. It made me laugh so hard sometimes, I just couldn’t stop. Percy, Grover, all the scenes… it was hilarious! It’s a fantastic pick if you want to relax and forget about the real world for a while and I just needed a break from school these days. Also, I already mentioned how I liked that everything was connected to Greek mythology and I was blown away by how much sense it all made. Absolutely perfect. All the explanations, how it all worked, was so simple and easy to follow, I did not get confused at all. Also, there was always a dose of humor, in every scene, which was fantastic.

I absolutely loved Percy Jackson.  He is my bae. I don’t care he’s only twelve, he’s awesome. unny sassy, not afraid of anyone… what else can you ask for a main character? Nothing, I agree. He made me laugh so often, my love for him only grew throughout the book. Also, he completely bought me when he sent Medusa’s head to Olymp to Gods. That was so freaking awesome! Percy didn’t let anyone mess with him, and Gods were no exception. I’m not saying that was always a clever thing to do, but it was amazing, for sure.
Annabeth was okay, I liked her, but I can’t say I loved her. She was smatr, a warrior and brave and I really liked her because of that. She was real Athena’s daughter. Grover was probably my second favourite character (after Percy, of course) and I love him so much. He was funny as well and also a very good friend. I love his relationship with Percy a lot. I really hope he will succeed and find Pan and that we are going to see more of him in next books. I really liked Poseidon as well, even though I don’t have a particular reason why. I just believe he’s a good father and that he loved Percy and that he’s proud of him. Ares was cool, I actually kind of liked him, and Hades as well, but since they’re both ”bad guys”, I guess I’m supposed to dislike them. But they are so cool! Another bad guy, but this one I completely hated, is Luke. Okay, I knew that it was all his fault from the beginning and I tried to understand him and like him at the beginning, but I just couldn’t. I just hate that bastard! I found Dionysus so hilarious,just the fact that he hated his job and he still had to do it because it was his punishment was so ironic, I mean, he’s a God, and he still couldn’t do what he wanted to do. So funny!

I loved Underworld. The atmosphere, all the descriptions, all these funny comments Percy and his friends had… Amazing! Scenes ”down there” were probably my favourites. I especially loved Haron and his attitude. I was laughing so hard when Annabeth gave Cerberus a ball and they passed him almost without any problem.

The ending was not a surprise for me because I had already watched the movie so I knew how the plot ends. However, I still consider it very well done and it all wrapped up nicely at the end. I love the twist when Percy laft Medusa’s head to his mother and she actually got rid of Gabe with it. That was so unexpected, but I loved it. I hated the guy.

All in all, this book was pure fun and I’m so glad I finally read it. I have no idea when I’ll be continuing with the series because I have so many books I want to read soon, but I know I won’t be able to wait for long. The Sea of Monsters is already watching me from s shelf.

Neil Gaiman – The Graveyard Book | Review

After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.
Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family . . .
Beloved master storyteller Neil Gaiman returns with a luminous new novel for the audience that embraced his New York Times bestselling modern classic Coraline. Magical, terrifying, and filled with breathtaking adventures, The Graveyard Book is sure to enthrall readers of all ages.

★★★★★ 2213661

This book was fantastic! I was pleasantly surprised. I didn’t expect much of it since it’s basicly children’s book, but it turned out pretty amazing. I found myself really enjoying it and it didn’t really matter that the main character is still a child. I liked him anyway. I absolutely loved the atmosphere in this book. I can’t say it was scary because it wasn’t but it had that mysterious tone and a graveyard spirit. Very cool. Neil Gaiman is an amazing writer, I totally love his writing style, it’s very simple and interesting to read. But one thing was just sticking out. Illustrations. These were perfect and they really helped to make a mood in the book. Dave McKean did a great job. I liked the idea and the plot a lot, and the whole composition of the novel is very nice, how at the beginning Nobody is a baby and he’s growing up throughout the whole book. It was very nice to see him growing up and wanting different things. Character development was definitely on level. Other characters were also very interesting, but it was confusing as well because we had all these different creatures we knew nothing about, but all in all, I liked it. There was no much explaining in the book, just Bod’s journey and childhood, but we never found out how all of these paranormal elements actually worked. However, I’m aware it’s mainly children’s book and that kids wouldn’t find a lot of explanations very interesting to read. Still, I’m curious.

SPOILER PART – if you haven’t read the book yet, I recommend not to read any further, go and read the book and then come back.

My favourite scene was definitely the last ‘battle’. It wasn’t actually a battle, but let’s say it was the last action scene. I absolutely loved it, I consider it the best part of the book. It was intense, interesting and fun to read because I kinda knew that this book has to end happily. It’s children’s book after all, right? The whole ending was actually pretty nice and I enjoyed it a lot. I liked how Bod didn’t actually kill anyone, all of them were only trapped. That was kind of apropriate and I liked it. Very original, as well. It was a nice message that killing your enemy is not the only solution. Also, I loved it that Bod and Scarlett didn’t ‘end up’ together. It would just ruin the end for me. I liked it much more the way it went, that Scarlett forgot about Bod and all that happened. Very good. But the last chapter was amazing. Very sad, I almost got teary eyed, though. But amazing. When Bod said goodbye to everyone on the graveyard and went to see the world. Wow. Perfect ending. I’m just so content with the way this book is put together and the way it ended. Very apropriate and different, I think.

I loved Bod. He was such a relatable character and definitely my favourite in the book. I’d love to live his life, only without that ‘there is a guy who killed your familiy and wants you dead as well’ part. I would like to skip that. I could connect with him easily, I understood him very well and I’m glad he got his happy ending. I didn’t like Scarlett very much. I don’t have some good reason for it, but I couldn’t make myself to like her. My second favourite character in this book was probably Silas. Oh God, how I liked him. He was the most interesting and the most mysterious character and I was dying to find out more about him. I could connect with him as well and I also felt sorry for him because he was not the part of any world, not dead nor alive. I also liked Miss Lupescu a lot, but I was surprised to find out that she’s a werewolf. But now when I look back at it, even her last name tells us her secret. Also, it’s not okay that she died. I knew that Mr. Frost was the bad guy. I just knew it. It was not convincing that he was that nice to Scarlett for no reason. Never trusted that guy and it turned out I was right about that. Bastard. But he got what he deserved. I can’t say I’m surprised. Another character I liked was Liza, the ghost witch Bod made friends with. I loved her and Bod’s friendship. Still, I found myself shipping them. Is that weird? I’m not sure.

As I already said, it bothered me a bit that we didn’t find out a lot of details about all different ‘creatures’ we meet in the book and we also never found out how it all works. For example, I can’t understand how can Bod see ghost on the graveyard and no one else can. I mean, he’s only human? But okay, let’s say he can see them because he’s been with them since he was a baby and he was allowed to live on the graveyard so that may be the reason. Still, I don’t understand how the hell is he able to do all these supernatural things like Dreamwalking and other cool stuff. Also, we never really found out what Silas actually is, or what he really does. Also, Miss Lupescu. How do werewolves fit into the whole thing? So many questions! Still, I decided that I don’t find that as a complaint because that may be a good thing as well. As I said, this is a children’s book and not everything has to have a valid reason to be. It’s all just imagination and imagination doesn’t need science or history to sound real, right?