Book Review: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
AHHHH SO GOOOOOD. Let it be known that I am a long time Rick Riordan fan. I first read his books in high school and haven't stopped reading (and rereading) them since. I love his Percy Jackson series and Heroes of Olympus series and enjoyed The Kane Chronicles and Magnus Chase. So it was a no brainer that I'd be reading this installment to the Camp Half-blood world as well.
Truthfully, going into this I didn't know how I would feel with Apollo as a narrator. In the past, we've seen him as a bit of a side character. He was always messing around or just plain creating a mess. I didn't know if his tone would come off too childish for me, as I am a bit older and don't read much middle grade anymore. Surprisingly, I actually found his narrative ridiculously hilarious and wholly enjoyable. I understand how some readers still found his tone to read as younger. This is because in some ways it did, but as always Riordan is an incredibly smart writer. The way that he wields myth and history created a character both young and old; someone whose story you can't wait to read.
Also, I can't even lie, it was so good to see some of the old characters. I wont spoil and we didn't get to see everyone, but AHHH who we did see made me fangirl so hard. That is something I knew I was missing in the Magnus Chase series. In Magnus Chase we get to see Annabeth for a short spell, but as much as that was awesome it just left this lingering need to see how the rest of our Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus characters are doing. In a way, this Trials of Apollo series is going to be such a great avenue for introducing new readers to the rest of Riordan's series'. We get enough of a taste of the past characters to make a new reader curious about who they are, while also satiating the curiosity of us long time readers.
I know that, at first, many were very hesitant to read another book in the PJO world. Many compared adding another series to this world to the way that Cassandra Clare has SO MANY Shadowhunters books both already written and planning to be written. Personally, I absolutely love when writers do this. Some will say that more books are unnecessary and that it becomes a new way of marketing and laziness to simply expand on a fictional world that they've seen to have run its course. I, on the other hand, am forever in love with a world that just keeps on giving. I think it speaks not to laziness, but so much creativity to be able to read all these books by Rick Riordan, but still feel like I'm reading something new, yet familiar at the same time.
If you're on the fence about this I'd say still give it a try! Similar to the Heroes of Olympus, we get a mix of Greek and Roman mythology AND we venture into Roman history. Whether a reader new to Riordan or a long time fan I think there's something here for everyone! Middle grade or no this was a really awesome read!