Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Battle of the Labyrinth

Percy Jackson and the Olympians book 4

by Rick Riordan

This has been a month of sequels, hasn't it? I can't tell you how happy I am to live close to a big library that actually has the books I want! And, they have enough of them that even super popular new releases, like Percy, still only take about a week to get your hands on. So nice!

I don't want to give anything away, so I won't go into too many details about this one. It starts at the end of the school year, but Percy's new high school is having a new student orientation. Before dropping him off, his mom cautions Percy to be careful and try not to have any "incidents" as it is her boyfriend's school and he had pulled some strings to get Percy in. But, alas Percy can't seem to step foot in a school without having some problems. After pretty much blowing up the school, Percy and Annabeth head off to Camp Half-Blood in an attempt to hide out while they wait for the furor to die down. In the mean time things are not all well at Camp Half-Blood, and it is eventually decided that Annabeth will lead a quest into the heart of the labyrinth, in an attempt to reach Daedalus before Luke and his Kronus buddies can get to him and gain access to Camp Half-Blood.

Contrary to most of the other reviews that I read about this one, The Battle of the Labyrinth is not my favorite in this series. I enjoyed it quite a bit, but I thought the ending was a bit cheap and that prevents it from being my favorite. I don't want to really explain my displeasure, but I should add that this book basically concludes as well as the other three have - the main battle of this story is resolved with the impending battle with Kronus still at hand.

Even with the cheap edning, I did really enjoy this story, especially the workings of the labyrinth (ever changing and evolving) and the appearance of lesser known Greek monsters. It was fun to go back and re-read the myth about Daedalus and Icarus and to learn about the empousa, which are kind of like a precursor to vampires. I was also thrilled to see more of Rachel Elizabeth Dare and to learn more about Nico.

Overall, I highly recommend this book, though you definately need to read this series in order (The Lightning Thief is the first in the series). And, I can't wait for the fifth and final adventure to come out next year!

4 out of 5 stars

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