An astounding action-packed finale
If there were ever such a thing as a perfect novel, The Last Olympian would be it. The novel was flawless, the action was perpetual and incredible, and everything from the previous novels was tied together and wrapped up neatly.
The concluding novel increases the action from the very first page. Percy and Camp Half-Blood have been planning tactics and war strategies all year in preparation for Kronos’ rise and the final war the prophecy has alluded to for years. Titans, few gods and several half-bloods have joined Kronos’ invasion and will stop at nothing until Olympus is in ruins. A major issue is the4 gods are unable to directly interfere with prophecies and so Percy and the Heroes are basically left to defend Olympus and Western Civilisation all on their own.
What stood apart in this novel is that the adventure has ended and war is imminent. The novel features several small battles, instead of just one final battle at the end of the novel which I supremely enjoyed. This made the war feel more realistic and accurate. I couldn’t help but notice, which I’m sure was intentional on Riordan’s part, that the novel followed the same framework of the Trojan War but in reverse: Titans are involved in the conflict instead of the gods; a beloved and famous hero, remanent of Hector, is killed at the beginning of the war; a hero, like Achilles, takes offence to something and refuses to partake in the war; another hero, like Patroclus, attempts to take the hero’s place and is killed, as well as several more similarities. As the Titan Prometheus said, “History repeats itself.”
Like The Battle of the Labyrinth, Riordan’s modern take on classical events and Greek mythology is unparalleled and shows what a creative mastermind he is. We are introduced to countless Titans and gods I never knew existed which increased the action and the plot by tenfold. My personal favourite was Prometheus, who is supposedly the Titan who created humans, much to the chagrin of other Titans and gods. Prometheus, and few other Titans, remind us that not all Titans are evil, like Kronos. Some have kindness and virtue within them, and their treatment by the Olympians was cruel and unjustified.
I was so excited to finally experience the endgame for many of these cherished characters; some outlines resulted in death, misery and sadness, while other characters get the ending they truly deserved. Don’t think this novel was all action and no heart. That is definitely not the case. The Last Olympian combines history, mythology and action with humour and whimsy, Riordan’s trademark stamp. I laughed so much while reading this novel that I would frequently have to put the novel aside to wipe the tears from my eyes. As always, Riordan’s writing was on point as he was perfectly able to get into the mind and heart of a teenage boy. The frank and comical tone of the novel made for a lighter read, as many of the scenes in the book were quite dark.
The conclusion was simply stunning. As I first began reading this novel, I had several questions that I hoped would be answered throughout the text, namely, how the Olympians can change their ways to ensure something like this never happens again. Riordan answered every question and concern I had in a manner that I did not see coming. I also loved that the hero of the day was an unlikely one and so glad Riordan made that particular decision as this god is someone who is frequently ignored and left out, not only in the novels but also in mythology.
I don’t think it is possible to choose a favourite character after reading this book. Percy, Annabeth, Grover, Nico, Berckendorf, Silena, Clarisse … every one of these character has touched my heart in some way and are the reason The Percy Jackson series has become one of my absolute favourite books.
The Last Olympian is by far the strongest novel in the series. It was a fun, touching and action-packed book that concluded in a truly satisfying way. Now I understand the hype surrounding Riordan and his novels.
The Lightning Thief mini review: https://thebookcorps.wordpress.com/2016/11/25/the-lightning-thief-by-rick-riordan/
The Sea of Monsters mini review: https://thebookcorps.wordpress.com/2016/11/26/the-sea-of-monsters-by-percy-jackson/
The Titan's Curse mini review: https://thebookcorps.wordpress.com/2016/11/27/the-titans-curse-by-rick-riordan/
The Battle of the Labyrinth mini review: https://thebookcorps.wordpress.com/2016/11/28/the-battle-of-the-labyrinth/