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 the Argo II, she can’t blame the Roman demigods for thinking the ship is a Greek weapon. With its steaming bronze dragon figurehead, 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.
And that’s only one of her worries. In her pocket, Annabeth carries a gift from her mother that came with an unnerving command: 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.
©2012 Rick Riordan (P)2012 Listening Library
What I like about Rick's Series of books, is the maturing timeline; has I age the characters seems to grow and age with me; becoming more mature and real in the sense that i can relate to some of the emotional experiences, if not the situation. My favorite maturing character in the Mark of Athena was Percy; as the main hero from the first Olympians series i think of Percy as the most powerful Demi -god, with the most diverse personality. but in this book, what was shown most was not physical or divine powers as such; but knowledge and using ones head to solve the most bizarre of situations, showing wisdom child. through most of the book the characters seem to be fighting at every turn for their lives, in confrontations where their powers was just not enough to help or save them; i found that the book was full of badder and meaner monsters god, and Giants; with many instances were you had to laugh, keeping with the Author sense of style and characterization.
I had this book almost as soon as it was available for download. I have now listened to it twice and it has not been out quite two days yet.
I love the group dynamics in this one. Usually there is only three people to keep track of. This time we get to experience the tension and drama of combining the two teams from the first two books. Jason and Percy are fun to watch too. Who is leading this group anyway?
And then the ending!!! And I have to wait another year? That is part of what makes Mr. Riordan such an amazing writer. He leaves my family with a desperate thirst for the next instalment in the adventure.
I love these characters for my kids because every one of them makes mistakes, has problems, has insecurities, and does the right thing anyway.
Totally addicted to books: written or spoken! To read or to listen...? Both please!
Always love the narrator. Fulfilling book that both ties up loose ends & leaves a cliff hanger. Can't wait for the next book.
Mom, Author, Teacher, and Critter Lover
I'd definitely recommend this book to a student or adult fan of children's literature... the characters are engaging, realistic enough for the now-older fans of the original series to appreciate, but still wholesome and goodhearted. None of this "gritty preteen" nonsense with this series... the author manages to keep the tone both light and emotionally engaging, weaving in real-world teen issues (friendships, first romance, social awkwardness) with honest-to-goodness fantasy. The core of Greco-Roman mythology is spot-on, lending a trendiness to what, for some readers, can be dusty traditional tales.
For the tween reader who favors (ugh) dystopian sci-fi, this series won't hold up - but for kids who are still allowed to be kids without the "edge" modern media tries to put on them, this is exactly the sort of romp to fill a snowy winter afternoon. Don't get me wrong - this isn't pat and bland. Percy Jackson's world is to, say, the dystopian realms of The Hunger Games what Spider-Man is compared to the X Men: more humorous, willing to laugh at itself, and definitely not into taking itself too seriously.
Oh, and there are educational gleanings in there, too, from the best place to find whale sharks in captivity to what was going on as Fort Sumter was attacked... happy teacher, here. The best kind of learning happens when kids don't think they ARE learning.
Give me second, I'm trying to get my story straight...
I've really enjoyed this series, and it is nice to see that The Mark of Athena follows the trend. Good story, good narration, good times.
This series started out great, with lots of time spent getting to know the characters, original ideas and intricate plots, but this book is more action centered and a lot more predictable. As the demigods travel to Rome, monsters pop up constantly and they have to use their wits and battle skills to survive. Point of views change often, giving us insight into the main character's minds (Anabeth, Leo, Piper, etc), but I did not feel as close to them in this book as I did in the two previous ones. The story is great and there are lots of good laughs, as you would expect from this author, but the fast paced action felt a bit more artificial... as if it were made of a series of mini-stories strung closely together on the story timeline.
In the end, I was left hungry for more development. The love stories evolved, yes (mainly Anabeth and Percy's), but the main quest (finding the doors of death... and saving Nico), is only partly finished by the end of the book. However, Anabeth's side-quest (following the mark of Athena, avenging her mother), which takes up a lot of space in the story, does reach it's conclusion. Still, very little progress is made in this installment of the series, and I must admit that I was a bit disappointed.
Also, the narrator is a great voice for the series, but I agree with other critiques that say the way some of the characters are interpreted makes them sound dumb. Octavian sounds cartoon-stupid, which is a bit much, and Frank sounds like a big thug, which is flat-out wrong. Even Percy sounds a bit weird in this book (!), and all that makes the listening experience a lot less interesting.
In short, this book is a must for all fans, but I will probably go for the paper version of the sequel, and I am now certain that this series will (unfortunately) not surpass the Percy Jackson series.
Love Rick Riordan's books. I always read my son's, but this time I thought I'd try the audio version. It was difficult to get past the pronunciation of Gaia, which should be GUY-ya, but was instead pronounced GEE-ya.
The story is wonderful as always; I love the clever way Riordan updates the old myths and applies the characters and situations to the modern age. I always have some great laughs. The narrator was ok, though his breathless portrayal of the female characters was definitely off when they were kicking *ss. Meh.
Tell us about yourself!
This is the best book in both Percy Jackson series, so far. I was really impressed with the direction it's taken, especially the way this one ended. I can't wait for the next one to be published. I will have to listen to this again in the mean time.
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