The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan: Book Review

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The Sea of Monsters

4 Stars

Something is wrong at Camp Half-Blood. Can Percy fix it?

I loved the first in the series, and I really, really liked this one. But I would have preferred to have an original story within the framework of Greek mythology in the modern world rather than have a re-telling of The Odyssey, no matter how original. Because that’s what this amounted to. The Odyssey, starring Percy Jackson and set in the 21st century.

I know this is a kid’s book, but the foreshadowing in here was very clunky. “I didn’t know it at the time, but my mom and I would never get to have our afternoon talk.
In fact, I wouldn’t be seeing home for a long, long time.”

See? There’s really no other word but clunky.

I love Percy as a storyteller. He can be dry, infantile, hilarious, sarcastic, reflective, you name it. Everything a great character should be. But his humor probably isn’t for everyone. Here’s a description I loved: “I could smell the [monster]–a sickening combination of wet sheep wool and rotten meat and that weird sour body odor only monsters have, like a skunk that’s been living off Mexican food.” Juvenile? Yes. My sense of humor? Absolutely. And let’s not forget the chapter titles. “Demon Pigeons Attack” “Party Ponies Invade” Curious? You should be.

But there is a slightly more serious thread underneath all this that helps Percy learn the value of family, and reinforces the value of friendship. There’s a new character introduced here: Tyson. I loved this little guy.

This is a very strong continuation of the series and I highly recommend them.

Reviewed May 25, 2009

My review of The Lightning Thief.

Read an excerpt.

Find author Rick Riordan on his website, his blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

Buy The Sea of Monsters at


Friday Flashback Reviews are a weekly feature here on The Introverted Reader. These are old reviews I wrote on GoodReads. Thanks to Angieville and her Retro Friday Reviews for the inspiration and encouragement!

I have an affiliate relationship with Malaprop’s, my local independent bookstore, and Better World Books. I will receive a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase books through links on my site.

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