By Madi Baker

The Mark of Athena, by RickRiordan and published by Disney-Hyperion is the third book in the The Heroes of Olympus four part series. This 580-page fantasy is a non-stop read the whole way through. After the release of The Mark of Athena in October 2012, it quickly climbed to the top being #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list, #1 on the USA Today Bestseller List and #1 on the Wall Street Journal Bestseller list.

The seven main characters, which include Percy Jackson, Annabeth Chase, Hazel Levesque, Frank Zang, Jason Grace, Piper McLean and Leo Valdez, are all half mortal, half god. Either their mom or dad is one of the main Greek or Roman gods or goddesses. They take you on a crazy quest starting in California all the way to Ancient Rome on the golden trireme Leo has built with his own hands

imagesthat can either fly or cruise on the water. Along the way there are run-ins with famous heroes and gods, such as the god Dionysus, Hercules, the goddess Aphrodite and many more.

The series starts out with Jason Grace being missing from Camp Jupiter, the Roman demigod camp, and him waking up on a bus with no memory and surrounded by his “two best friends”, but he doesn’t know who they are. Their names are Piper and Leo and soon they end up at Camp Halfblood, the Greek demigod camp where they meet Annabeth, who has been looking for her boyfriend Percy Jackson for six months. Soon enough they figure out he must be at Camp Jupiter, with no memory.

With Leo being the son of Hephaestus, the god of fire and forge, he is really good with his hands. He builds a Greek ship called a trireme that can either sail or fly, this is used to travel across the country to find Percy. One major part of the book is that Roman and Greek demigods do not get along, so, landing a Greek ship in a Roman camp can be very dangerous. They must pick up Percy, Frank and Hazel to fulfill the Prophecy of the Seven; and ancient prophecy for seven of the most powerful demigods to keep the earth goddess, Gaea from destroying it. Each of these demigods were chosen to go on this ancient quest because of the powers that each of them possesses. As soon as they land the Romans want to fight the four people on the ship, this starts all the action that continuously happens throughout the book. The Seven need to fly or sail across the world all the way to Rome, Italy. Along the way, Percy and Jason’s bodies are taken over by ghosts and they almost kill each other while riding on their own pegasus and Percy and Jason get stuck in an aquarium and have to fight their way out. Jason and Piper even defeat Hercules!

This book contains suspenseful action from cover to cover. Riordan never fails to add humor. Even at the most intense of moments, one of the characters cracks a joke or says something that wasn’t meant to be funny but you can’t help but laugh. “‘Hercules, huh?’ Percy frowned. ‘That guy was like the Starbucks of Ancient Greece. Everywhere you turn–there he is,’” during a conversation after their encounter with Hercules. He even includes romance between almost all of the main characters. Percy and Annabeth have been dating for years and now have been separated for months, when they reunite it’s tough to tell if they still have the same feelings for each other. Together they make the perfect team and it’s hard not to fall in love with them. Jason and Piper also are in a relationship and they love to help each other. Frank and Hazel are a new couple and were originally best friends, Leo and Hazel have a twisted past that tends to interfere with Frank and Hazel’s relationship.

The romance, humor, entertainment, suspense and the Greek mythology makes this enjoyable for anyone of any age to read. Since the characters in the book are all teenagers this book is mainly a great book for teens.

Since this book is the third in the series, there are two that come before it. The two books are just as exciting, but they build up the anticipation for what happens in this book. The Mark of Athena puts the early endings of the first two books together. In the series also by Rick Riordan called Percy Jackson and the Olympians is a set of five books in the beginning of Annabeth and Percy’s lives as demigods. Riordan wrote The Heroes of Olympus series based off of Percy Jackson and the Olympians with added characters and much more intensity and action. This book is worth it. Great book for an exciting read all the way through. The next and final book comes out in October of 2013 called The House of Hades.

Courtesy of Disney-Hyperion