Mark-of-AthenaIt’s a shame when such fun books have been destroyed by their movie version. Luckily, I had read The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan before I saw the movie. If I hadn’t, I might not read the rest of that series and started The Heroes of Olympus series, which has some of the same characters.

The Mark of Athena is the third book in the series. While this series could have been just a retelling of the first series with a different bad guy, Riordan has added an interesting new layer. Though the Roman gods and the Greek gods are by and large the same, the differences have caused the gods to be a bit schizophrenic. Just as the children of the Greek gods have Camp Half-Blood, the children of the Roman gods has New Rome.

Neither group has been aware of the other until Juno wiped the memories of heroes Jason Grace and Percy Jackson and placed them in the camp where they don’t belong. It was a desperate plan to get the young heroes to trust each other and work together to face Gaea, the mother of all gods.

As a group of seven Roman and Greek demigods set off on their quest to close death’s doors so that dead monsters say dead, they are pursued by angry Roman demigods who believe that the group attacked New Rome.  The quest takes the demigods to Kansas; Charleston, NC; Atlanta, GA and Rome.

Each of the seven must face their own challenges, but it is obvious that they are strongest when they are together as they face giants and ancient gods.

Fans of the original Percy Jackson series will enjoy all of the scenes with Percy and Annabeth as they explore the depths of their commitment to each other and their personal doubts.

The book ends with a bit of a cliffhanger, which is not unexpected seeing as this is part of a series.

I continue to enjoy these books, which sometimes surprises me. At times, I think this seems all too familiar, but then I just can’t seem to put the book down whether I’m enjoying the humor or the action.