Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Book Review: The Hidden Oracle


Review:  #676
Title:  The Hidden Oracle
Series:  The Trials of Apollo - 1st book
Author:  Rick Riordan
Read Before:  no
Comments:  The Hidden Oracle is the beginning of the third series set within the Percy Jackson world, taking place a few months after where Heroes of Olympus ended.  Unfortunately, a short way into the novel you come to realize that the plot structure is exactly the same as the previous two series, with the same style of meeting Greek and Roman mythological creatures updated for modern times, getting a prophecy and going on a quest to save the world.  The twist this time is that the protagonist is the god Apollo himself, cast down and stripped of all powers.  As a mortal, he is weak but from time to time, he can summon up remnants of his powers. The pop culture references remain overwhelming and out of place at times, as if the author is trying too hard to make it relevant and connect with the younger audiences.  You’d also notice that characters are written in such a way that they are all trendy and cool but feels forced and contrived.  Surprisingly, the plot doesn’t take Apollo to many places, it is mainly confined to Camp Half-Blood and the areas surrounding it.  After halfway and feel like the plot still hasn’t started, with it being repetitive, it changes for the better and becomes more exciting especially when the author starts revealing some of the masterminds behind the evil plans.  Once Apollo dials down his ego (which was only funny half the time anyway), he becomes a lot more likeable.  The return of many characters makes it confusing to remember who is who and while the return of one character at the end of the novel is supposed to be one of joy and awesomeness, the forced trendiness comes to the forefront again and makes it harder to like the scene.  All in all, The Hidden Oracle is surprisingly better than expected but the familiar structure of the plot, direction of the humor and style of writing has overstayed its welcome after four series (Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, The Kane Chronicles and Magnus Chase).
Rating:  6.5/10

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