“Fans will revel in the adventures, wit, and memorable characters found in this thundering conclusion to The Heroes of Olympus series.”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
As the cover says, this is a return to the world of Percy Jackson. Rick Riordan sets off on a whole new set of adventures with the fall of Apollo from Olympus – well, he materialises in a dumpster in most ungodly fashion totally bereft of any godly powers. Apollo’s new avatar is Lester Papadopoulos, undoubtedly Greek, spotted with acne, promptly mugged but with all Apollo’s baggage of ego and a mean line of soul songs.
Apollo-Lester sets out on a quest to discover what happened as the slave of a demigod called Meg McCaffe who materialises out of a fire escape to rescue him from his muggers. Percy Jackson comes into it but is busy studying for his exams which makes it difficult for him to help Apollo. Riordan as usual has the pace of the book plotted to precision with Apollo’s travails adding a new twist. Instead of a mortal discovering godly genes, in The Trials of Apollo it’s exactly the other way round. The mysteries unfold at Camp Half Blood with a Triurumvirate of suits who turn out to be Roman Emperors on the rampage led by the worst of them all, The Beast, the self styled descendant of Apollo.
At the heart of the book is a subtext of teen angst – a whole generation of sixteen year olds thinking the world revolves around them only to discover that most of the time they fall flat on their faces unless the odds force them to be exceptional.
The dice are stacked against Apollo in every respect but he manages to get the better of his ego, touch his softer side and rollick through the adventure with absurdly comic companions like the demon of a peach who wears diapers and an arrow that speaks Elizabethan English. In between are all the references to Greek gods and godlings and their goings on, not to mention glimpses of Roman history with a handy glossary thrown in for good measure.
Quite obviously The Trials of Apollo are here to garner followers oracle by oracle as Apollo fights to right his previous blunders and possibly get his godhood totally back. But then, most readers won’t miss it in all the excitement!
Added 2nd June 2016