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My Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.5/5)
What I love most about Rick Riordan’s books is that they are quick reads. I can always count on his books to be an easy one to follow through. I finished The Sea of Monsters in less than 24 hours in total. However, I found that I wasn’t quite as engaged as I was when I read the first book, The Lightning Thief.
To begin with—though I hate to admit it—I was a little bored in the beginning and even for a little bit in the middle. Since the first book was action packed and full of little surprises, I suppose my expectations for the second book were high. Although it was nice to be back in this world, I didn’t feel as connected with the individual characters as I previously did with the first book. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but I honestly believe that The Sea of Monsters was definitely lacking something. Perhaps it’s the element of surprise that it was lacking? There were some instances in the book where something supposedly shocking happens but I just found myself saying “I saw that coming.”
Another thing that mildly disappointed me was that I didn’t find myself laughing as often as I did when I read the first book. Maybe it isn’t good to be comparing the second book to the first book so much, but it’s just really difficult not to. Rick Riordan seems to have a gift when it comes to giving his characters just the right amount of wit and in turn making them hilarious and almost always relatable. I was searching for that in this book, but to my disappointment, I only laughed a few times.
What I did really enjoy about this book, though, was the relationship between Percy and Tyson. To be quite honest, I was ready to give this book just 3 out of 5 stars, but I was genuinely touched with how Rick Riordan developed and concluded the relationship between Percy and Tyson. I thought that deserved an extra half of a star. I am always a sucker for anything that touches on family values.
“Families are messy. Immortal families are eternally messy. Sometimes the best we can do is to remind each other that we’re related for better or for worse…and try to keep the maiming and killing to a minimum.”
Personally, what makes me decide how I’m going to rate a book really all depends on how the author concludes the story. In this case, I was impressed that, although I was at times bored throughout most of the book, the ending did enough to touch a part of my heart (particularly the relationship between Percy and Tyson, as I’ve mentioned). The little “twist” in the end, though…? I kind of saw that coming. That’s why I’m giving it only 3.5 instead of a 4. Again, element of surprise…I was searching for that. Nonetheless, I am excited to get to the third book and see how everything continues.