Percy Jackson & The Olympians by Rick Riordan Series Review

Books in the Series: The Lightning Thief, Sea of Monsters, The Titan’s Curse, The Battle of the Labyrinth, & The Last Olympian

The Backstory

Do you ever just have a weird craving to read a book so badly that it’s all you can think about? It’s all consuming and every single book that you pick up is just NOT THAT BOOK? And you’re sitting there, forever crying because you’re just not reading that book AND YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW WHY BECAUSE YOU HAVE LITERALLY 100 OTHER BOOKS YOU COULD BE READING???

That was me at the very end of November, thinking about how desperately I wanted to get back to Percy Jackson. I’ve seen so many mentions of it through everyone’s various blogs, reminding me how much I enjoyed it as a tween. I needed it back in my life, and I was determined to get it. And I happened to get it in form of the new gorgeous boxed set that had me fangirling all over again.

So, fun fact: I only read 3/5 books the first time around. I knew that I never read the first book because I happened to discover the second book at a school book fair (gosh, I miss those things…and they can never be replicated…in, you know, an actual bookstore or anything). ANYWAY, I saw the second one and it sounded ridiculously cool and I was like, FIRST BOOK. I DON’T NEED NO FIRST BOOK BECAUSE I AM SMART AND I ONLY HAVE MONEY FOR ONE BOOK AND SEA OF MONSTERS JUST SOUNDS SO MUCH COOLER.

So, I bought the second one, and there is this nifty thing called a recap that Riordan just slid in there and I was good. So I read and loved that one. Then I read and loved the other one. And then I read and loved the next one. But then I guess I was feeling my book hipster and thought I was too cool for a middle grade book with this silly boy named Percy Jackson AND I NEVER READ THE LAST BOOK EVEN THOUGH I LEGIT SWORE THAT I DID. As Sha put it, I literally eat the middle part of the Oreo without eating the ends. OOPS.

So, in November – December, I binge read them all and here are my thoughts!

The Favorites

I always knew that the Labyrinth book was my favorite from my memory. I was like, ooh, maze thing, me likey. THAT WILL BE MY FAVORITE. Literally, that was one of the best ones that I could remember out of the series, and it proved fantastic the second time around. If you’re looking for a non-stop action book full of literal and figurative twists and turns, this book is it. I thought the labyrinth was one of the coolest settings ever, and I devoured this book with so much excitement and maze thing passion.

The Labyrinth book is at a total tie with The Titan’s Curse for my actual favorite book of the series. I actually forgot most of this book. It’s always the one that I forget when I was trying to name the books in the series, but it was so much fun. I thought the Hunters were epic (FIERCE FEMALE LEADS, YES PLEASE), and I thought all of the infusion of the Titan mythology was so intriguing. I loved them going all across the country as well. SO SO intriguing.

Having never read the Lighting Thief and only ever watched the movie, I was quite intrigued to see what was going to happen with the actual book. BUT HOW DID I MISS ALL THE EPICNESS THAT IS THIS BOOK??? IT WAS FANTASTIC, AND I WAS SO IMPRESSED AND SO ASHAMED OF MYSELF FOR FAILING ON THIS FIRST BOOK. Perfect way to jump into the series.

The Lesser-Favorites

Okay, I always had a super fondness for Sea of Monsters. It was the book that first introduced me to the series. Of course, it will always have a place in my heart. However, I didn’t feel it as much as I did the other books. The opening was a bit of a struggle for me, and I just kind of wanted to yell at everyone that was mean to Tyson??? BE NICE TO MY LOVE.

With The Last Olympian being action-packed, I expected myself to get so, so into it, but I found at times I would leave the book to the side and not pick it up for a couple days. It did pick up at the end, but for a while, I struggled to get into it.

Both of these were still four crowns, but I just didn’t feel them as much as the others in the series.

Favorite Aspects of the Series

UM, BASICALLY EVERYTHING. THE MYTHOLOGY. THE FUNNIES. GROVERRRRRRRRR. PERCY. THE HUNTERS. ZOEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE (SERIOUSLY, I LOVE ME SOME ZOE). JUST SO MUCH GOODNESS. Rachel Elizabeth Dareeeeeeeee.

Least Favorite Aspects of the Series

Thalia (ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh). Nico (still enjoyed him, but he was my favorite in the first series, and he kind of failed me on the reread). The romance???? Okay, don’t hate me Annabeth and Percy shippers, but I just didn’t feel it. Like, it was okay, but I never shipped it super hardcore like I thought I would. It was just kind of there at the end and I was like, eh, okay, I’ll go with it. Hopefully I get more into it in the next series? I was thinking maybe it might not have been fully needed.

Conclusion

It was even better than I remembered it as a kid, and I totally see the major love. I’m now so, so ready to dive down the Rick Riordan spiral, and just read everything by that man. JUST SO MUCH LOVE.

What do you think? Did you read Percy as a kid? What are your favorites in the series? Let’s discuss in the comments below! ~ Mandy

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78 thoughts on “Percy Jackson & The Olympians by Rick Riordan Series Review

  1. Aahh! Mandy! Welcome to the PJO Fandom!! *fangirl squeal & scream* I am so glad you joined! πŸ˜„ And I feel you about PercAbeth ship. I don’t ship them hardcore at the first series too. But when I read the second series, bes, they are all I ship about! Haha! Though I aslo ship Percy and Jason. πŸ˜‚ Anyway, welcome again! I guess you could consider yourself a demigod! Who’s your godly parent? πŸ˜„

    P.S.
    If you’re looking for more Rick Riordan books aside from his mythology books (PJO, Magnus Chase, Appollo), I’d recommend 39 Clues. It’s actually written by 11 authors (if I’m not mistaken) but Rick is the author of the first book, Maze of Bones (check if it’s correct. I might be remembering it wrong πŸ˜„). And if you read the first book, I’m pretty sure you’d want to read the rest. If you’re up to mystery-adventure kind of book, that is.

    Oh, and hey. Long time no talk. I just got a little excited there. Hehe. πŸ˜…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSssss. I was like, I have to know what Jannin is talking aboutttttt. I’m like I don’t doubt you, but I didn’t remember it being this genius. OOOOOOOOOOH. SO SO eager to get to the second series then!! Lol I will have to check out the Jason and Percy ship for sure then. πŸ˜‰

      Ooooh, that sounds epic!! I will definitely have to check it out!! Which was your favorite series out of all of his?

      And yes! I’ve been so MIA that I haven’t been blog hopping much and I know you’ve been busy. How have you been?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I love his PJO and HoO series the most. Because those are the series that made me into reading foreign books. πŸ˜„ But 39 clues also took me in a very fun and wild adventure.

        I’m fine. I miss blogging and blog hopping so much. I’ve been missing out on your great reviews and the others’ reviews as well. Hope I’ll have time to blog hop and comment soon. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Okay, super cool, Jannin! Glad I started those two first. πŸ˜€ You are my Riordan guide here. πŸ˜‰

        Is school and no wi-fi again? But yes, hopefully you’ll have time because I miss reading your lovely posts. πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

    1. OOoooooh yes!! It’s just something about that labyrinth????
      I’m so eager to see what you end up thinking about it, because I was debating about going for that series next. And yessssssssss. It’s so easy to binge too.

      Like

  2. Ahhh I am definitely also due for a reread of this! I remember The Titan’s Curse being my fave, but I recall so little about the series in general, only that I ADORED it. I think I prefer the Heroes of Olympus series to this one, and I think that Percy and Annabeth’s relationship gets more developed in that one. Lovely review!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yessssssssssssss. That was the same thing with me – I barely remembered anything, but it forgot just how good it was!! The Titan’s Curse was so so good. And ooooh, I’m just started The Heroes series, so I can’t wait for it and the ship!! Thanks so much! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  3. SIDNUDISJSU I AM SCREAMING RN BECAUSE EVERY TIME I SEE A NEW PJO RECRUIT I SCREAM THATS A NATURAL RATIONAL RESPONSE DUH. I’m so so so happy you loved themmmm!!! This is my favourite series, like ever, so yayyy!! I see why you’re not shipping percabeth that much yet cuz like this is series for like 9-11 year olds in focus, so I think Riordan kept the romance really lowkey. But trust me you’re gonna ship them soooooo sooooo much more in the Heroes of Olympus- it gets a lot more cute and shippable. QHEIDJDHDU CANT WAIT FOR YOU TO READ THE REST OF THE BOOKS

    Liked by 1 person

    1. AHHHHHHHHHHHHH MORE SHIPPABLE?????? I DON’T THINK I CAN HANDLE IT. I figured that he was trying to add it in lowkey, and I was hoping for some better slideins in the next series, so I’m so so excited for this. I understand about your warning for book 2, but I’m so so ready for the binge read that I know is coming. SO NOW I AM SCREAMING WITH YOU.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This gave me SO much nostalgia about when I read these about six years ago! I absolutely adored this series back then and I really want to do a re-read soon. I was the same as you on the favourites, The Battle of the Labyrinth was always my favourite because mazes are SO COOL! Sea of Monsters was good but just not the best.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I didn’t actually stumble upon Percy Jackson until I was in high school but I still loved them! My school library had the whole series plus the first book in the accompanying series, The Heroes of Olympus. I eventually bought them all for myself. Rick Riordan has a special place in my heart!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I also just finished reading the books in the PJO series. My only issues with the last book were that Clarisse was kinda thrown to the side even though she was involved throughout, and because it is a kid’s book the battles seemed rather humorous with a few sad deaths rather than being action-packed and engaging throughout. I also thought the Sea of Monsters had some boring parts.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! I did feel that about poor Clarisse. She really was cast aside in the big battle and she did seem quite a bit out of character for me. And I did agree. I really wasn’t as into the battle for those reasons. And same! I didn’t feel Sea of Monsters was as action packed.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I feel like she has been even more forgotten in the Heroes of Olympus series. I looked on the wiki and she isn’t even IN some of the books, and she has very, very minor parts in others. I felt that she was one of the girls with the most unique backstories in the series, so I will definitely be sad to see her disappear this way.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes! I didn’t even see her in the first one, and I don’t think she’s going to be in the second one from what I’ve got so far. And I totally agree! I feel like she had such a growth in the books and a development that shouldn’t have been thrown away.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I adored these books as a kid. One thing I like about Riordan is that as he writes more, his books grow up more; his later series cover more young adult topics, but in a more subtle way because he’s still a “kid’s” author. Also, I’m glad you liked Rachel. So many people seem to unjustly dislike her, which irks me; while I didn’t ship her and Percy, I still liked her so much as a character and she became a favorite of mine.
    I also like Battle of the Labyrinth and The Titan’s Curse the most!
    I’m taking of doing a sort of “comedy” short story series (to summarize, it’s about a psychologist for Greek myth characters) so I’m hoping to check out Riordan’s books on Greek mythology soon. I need a refresher, and I know those books will actually be told as stories, rather than, “and this happened. And then that. And everybody died. The end.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes! I totally see that. You can definitely tell the difference as he grows with the characters and the problems that they face. AND YES. I literally see no one mention Rachel, and I’m like, she’s lowkey the best character?? Love her dearly.
      And ooooh, we’re on the same wavelength again, Kate! πŸ˜‰
      Oooooooh, that sounds epic, Kate!! I cannot wait to see those. I definitely think that would be a fantastic thing to check out because you’re so right – he’s going to give it to you in a nice story instead of just a weird timeline.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The character development throughout his series is amazing. Rachel tends to be either ignored or disliked because of the ship tease, which really bugs me. I really grew to like her a lot, and I related to her the most when I first read the series.
        Well, I’m thinking of trying to redo Traces, because I reread the earliest chapters…and ugh, they’re terrible, because I was writing directly into WordPress. So I need to take a break from them, but I had an idea to take old stories (fairy tales, myths, Shakespeare, classics, etc.) and retell them wi different genres. That was one of the earliest ideas I had, though I want to do more research before I start. And next time I go to the library, I am definitely going to try to see whether they have his mythology books or not.
        But yeah, in between my retellings, my fandom recommendations, tags, and my starting up the Strength in Fiction series again…I’m gonna be busy!

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I agree! I could see everyone being angry about putting Percy in a love triangle possibility, but she’s just epic.

        Oh no! I thought they were good, but I know the feeling of not being pleased with it. Ooooh that sounds like such a super super cool idea. I can’t wait to see what you do with it. But I should think they would since he is so popular.

        Lol you are indeed!! At least you’re not going to have trouble coming up with new content or ask yourself, what am I going to do today???

        Liked by 1 person

      3. While I wasn’t a fan of the love triangle (it felt forced to me)I still liked her.
        Well, it was only when I started to write on a google docs document that I feel it got good. I just felt off writing a story on a blog post, and I think that translated; everything felt kind of rushed to me. So I’m taking a break, going to re-evaluate the ending (which I need to work on) and rewrite it!
        I’m just gonna have fun with the psychology one, but it may take a while, as I want to really do my research on both topics right.
        I just hope I have enough time…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I agree! I didn’t even see the triangle coming and it was like Riordan just wanted to do it to do it instead of what was organic to the story.

        Ahhhhh that makes sense. Can’t wait to see how you change it up. I hate doing edits, though, sometimes.

        Yes! I think that it will come out great, but it will just take a while. And yes! Time will definitely be an interesting issue. D: Hopefully!!

        Liked by 2 people

      5. I feel like I would have liked Rachel more if there hadn’t been that suggested ship, I thought it was annoying and completely unnecessary. I liked her more when the books outgrew that particular ship.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Lol can I say princess stories?? XD Like, I think it could be interesting to see like the classic fairytale of The Little Mermaid set in like a mystery setting (like, she goes undercover to find out more about the prince) or Sleeping Beauty in a video game or Hercules in the 1920s. If that makes any sense? Not sure if that helps your question or not.

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Okay! And ooh, I never thought of that! That could actually be a very good excuse; instead of being in love with him and giving up her voice after seeing him for a few minutes, she has to do those things to go undercover…I really like that idea, Mandy!
        I had two ideas already. Like, I was thinking of doing Bluebeard, but in a modern day, paranormal setting. Or Hades and Persephone, but in a psychological, fantasy, steampunk world. But I do love your idea!

        Liked by 2 people

      8. Lol, I just want a princess mystery story, lol. But ooooh, that would be so so cool! And I love the idea about Hades and Persephone. They’re always my favorite story. And oooh, I would be so intrigued by Bluebeard, too!! Those all sound great, Kate!

        Liked by 1 person

      9. Well, good idea! I never would’ve thought of that.
        I read about a version of the Hades and Persephone myth that actually DIDN’T involve kidnapping, and to be honest, I liked it better. It was cuter. And if you like that myth, I recommend a Webtoon called Lore Olympus; it’s a modern day retelling. However, it’s getting featured next month, so maybe check it out then. I just find Bluebeard an underrated fairy tale, and it’s creepy. So that’s why I want to rewrite it.

        Liked by 1 person

      10. Yes! Once you take out the kidnapping part, it becomes such a fascinating read. I read a few like that and it really just made me far more attracted to the myth. But oooooooh, I’m totally going to have to check that one for sure. February will definitely be a good month for it. πŸ˜‰ And yes! IT really is so creepy and never talked about. But I think you would do such a great job with it.

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Definitely. Taking out the kidnapping improves it so much. And which versions are like that? And you definitely should; I wasn’t able to read much, but the art was really unique. And haha, February really is a good month for it.
        Bluebeard is very underrated.
        And thanks! Now it’s all up to whichever I’m in the mood to write…

        Liked by 1 person

  8. It’s been such a long time since I read this series, I’ve been thinking about doing a reread sometime this year. I also need to catch up on Rick Riordan’s books, I have yet to read his newest two, what’s wrong with me?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Congrats on rereading an old fave Mandy!! You know I’ve been eyeing these for a while (bc little-Rendz was just not a reader! so Big-Rendz has to make up for it!) Watching your updates and reading your review really got me into the spirit again and I’m sure I’ll be picking these up some time this year!
    Great review!!!!!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. YES. AND I BELIEVE YOU SHALL. But warning: it kind of takes over your life and then you become stuck in a whirlpool of Rick Riordan books and you become trash for his stuff and can’t read anything besides it AND I MEAN PERCY LOVE????

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I insist this is love! This is life!! Your blog is validating my love and obsession with Peter Johnson!! Eh Percy Jackson xD Haha I thought I was so behind the party and the reading but I love to see people still taking about this books!! I am really happy that I have someone to discuss the books… Some how xD my reviews ate just coming<3 and I have 2 so far! I hope you could check them out !! :3

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh yes, I do…. Apollo is my favorite character in the saga, and I see he has his own books, wondering why… XD The books have really good characters and I like Percy, Annabeth, and Dionysus all right… but Apollo! I laughed my heart out on the Cursed of the Titan! (review ready XD)

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Good to see that we are on the same page! Do they? So they are kind of connected eh? Also something that I like a lot is the whole crossover idea! I liked Tsubasa Chronicles (manga) and XXXHolic (manga) because they cross a lot! I love that!! And it makes me happy to know that the saga is not dead yet :3

        Liked by 1 person

      3. That’s what I heard. Someone told me that there was spoilers in the first part of Trials of Apollo and that a character from Heroes appears in there. Yes! I do love crossovers with the series. It makes it a lot more fun to see how they interact. πŸ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

  11. The only problem with this series is that I CAN’T VISUALIZE THE CHARACTERS! I can visualize Annabeth, but how is someone supposed to think what a Cyclops looks like?! Or… a centaur? Or a SATYR? The books are great, though!

    Like

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