The Sea of Monsters

sea of monstersAfter finishing Rick Riordan's The Lightning Thief last week I started waiting impatiently for the second book in the Percy Jackson series, The Sea of Monsters. And when I say I was waiting impatiently, I was waiting very impatiently. Well, I wasn't too bad until it showed as "in transit" on my library request list but from that point on I might have refreshed my account holdings about twenty times. An hour. All day Thursday.

But of course it wasn't available Thursday. It arrived at my branch for me on Friday. Which was a slight problem because the library closes at 6 and by 5 I still wasn't dressed, had yet to figure out dinner and the ballet was starting at 8. Thankfully I was able to send the fake husband off to the library with my card to pick up the books while I finished getting ready and made a last minute dinner reservation. (I know not all libraries will allow spouses to do this, ours does, thank goodness.) I got my book, we made our dinner reservation and made it to the ballet in time to have a drink before the curtain went up. (I have to say, our seats this years are much better than last year and while I'm not sure I'll love the guy that has the seat next to us I nearly applauded when he shushed some people behind us who were still talking 10 minutes after the curtain rose.)

The Sea of Monsters was waiting for me to start it on Saturday. The only thing was that there were things that I had to do. Things that took me until past noon to finish while The Sea of Monsters stared at me and taunted me.  As soon as I could I picked it up and read it beginning to end in one gulp, which leads me to the biggest problem I have with the Percy Jackson series.

I can read them too quickly. I don't think it even took me two hours to read this one. And I didn't have the next one sitting there waiting for me to read it, and as anyone who has read The Sea of Monsters can tell you, you absolutely want the next book. Immediately. In fact, it made me very happy that to know that I probably only had to wait a few days before getting the next one because if I had read it when it came out and knew I had to wait a year (at least) to get the next one I might have had a meltdown. It's just not fair to end a book like that and have people wait.

But I'm getting ahead of myself aren't I?

The Sea of Monsters is a solid second book. We pick up at the end of the school year, so pretty much a year after the first book began. Percy is in a new school, has a new friend (who of course is also "special"). Percy's managed to get through the whole year of school without getting expelled (well, kinda) but then he finds out that his mother doesn't want him to go back to Camp Half-Blood this year. Something is up and she won't tell him what it is.

But, as it tends to happen, something occurs that has Percy fleeing from his school after having blown it up with the help of his new friend Tyson, Annabeth and some monsters. A mad-cap rush to Camp Half-Blood results only to find that the camp has pretty much gone to hell (well, not quite Hades...but generally speaking). Someone poisoned Thalia's tree and the defenses are failing. There's new staff and some of the old have been kicked out. Camp isn't safe. That type of thing calls for a quest don't you think?

The Sea of Monsters made me happy that I had read the Odyssey. I actually remembered things! (I like it when I remember things.) Important things are revealed in this one, that I'm fairly confident set up the rest of the series. And the ending? Oh the ending is a whopper.

The third book, The Titan's Curse is currently waiting for me at the library. I'm making myself hold off a bit. I have a few too many books on the go right now and I need to get ahead on them a bit.