Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Jason has a problem. He doesn’t remember anything before waking up in a bus full of kids on a field trip. Apparently he has a girlfriend named Piper and a best friend named Leo. They’re all students at a boarding school for “bad kids.” What did Jason do to end up here? And where is here, exactly?
Piper has a secret. Her father has been missing for three days, ever since she had that terrifying nightmare. Piper doesn’t understand her dream, or why her boyfriend suddenly doesn’t recognize her. When a freak storm hits, unleashing strange creatures and whisking her, Jason, and Leo away to someplace called Camp Half-Blood, she has a feeling she’s going to find out.
Leo has a way with tools. When he sees his cabin at Camp Half-Blood, filled with power tools and machine parts, he feels right at home. But there’s weird stuff, too—like the curse everyone keeps talking about. Weirdest of all, his bunkmates insist that each of them—including Leo—is related to a god.
I had so much fun reading this book. I read it to my 8 year old and he loved it too - to the point of nagging and pleading with me to read it more, even when my throat was raw because I had already read for over an hour. He was that addicted, always pleading for "just one page more..."
The Lost Hero introduced some fun new characters, namely Jason, a Roman transplant to Camp Half-Blood who can't remember anything from his past; Piper, whose father has been kidnapped and to save him, she must betray her friends; and Leo who has a way with tools and fire (Leo was by far my son's favourite because of his quirky humour).
The mystery surrounding Jason was really fun. I love the Roman elements and having them play off of the Greek elements of the book. There were also some great twists and turns that kept me and my son on the edge of our seats. The book is also full of action - fighting, adventures, dragons, evil monsters, and inuendo of even worse things to come...
The story is told from all three characters points of view. Each character took turns for 2 chapters at a time. This was good because it really allowed us to get into the heads of the different characters. I also think this widens the appeal to both boys and girls because there are more chances of relating to a character.
If you've read the Percy Jackson series, you will enjoy revisiting Camp Half-Blood and some of the characters from that series. I love the set up of how the new characters will eventually intermingle with the original characters, but at the same time, this is a whole new adventure.
I always love how Riordan builds his worlds and this book is no exception. He successfully brings together Greek and Roman mythology in a fun and modern way. There is adventure, mystery, action, and humour. Lots of humour. One of my son's favourite quotes, something he repeats over and over is:
Jason scratched his head. "You named him [the dragon] Festus? You know that in Latin, 'festus' means happy? You want us to ride off and save the world on Happy the Dragon? (p. 188)
Both my son and I highly recommend this book to middle school and young teens who enjoy adventure and mythology. It is a fast paced and engaging read.
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