“The House of Hades” by Rick Riordan book review and giveaway


house-of-hades-us-coverIt’s finally here! After a year of waiting after The Mark of Athena, Rick Riordan treats his avid readers to another round of Greek and Roman mythological madness with Percy Jackson and his cohorts in the form of The House of Hades.

The official book description:
The demigod crew of the Argo II is standing at a crossroads. They could return home with the Athena Parthenos statue and try to stop Camp Half-Blood and Camp Jupiter from going to war. Or they could continue on their quest to find the House of Hades, where they might be able to open the Doors of Death, rescue their friends Percy and Annabeth from Tartarus (if they have survived), and prevent monsters from being reincarnated in the moral world. Whichever road they decide to take, they have to hurry, because time is running out. Gaea, the bloodthirsty Earth Mother, has set the date of August 1 for her rise to power.

Overall verdict: 4 out of 5 stars

The good:

  • It’s a MUCH better book compared to The Mark of Athena. Better writing, better plot, and better characterization all around. More action too.
  • Riordan has a better handle on his ensemble cast. Yes the POVs are still divided among the main seven (Percy, Annabeth, Jason, Piper, Leo, Frank, and Hazel) but he manages to give each character their time to shine.
  • Each POV feels like a complete mini story. The transitions also aren’t as clunky as before.
  • Even more Greek history and mythology. Riordan’s delving into the less well-known stories and that’s always good. More Greek mythology for everyone!
  •  I loved Percy’s character development in Tartarus. It was great to see him be more introspective.
  •  More Nico di Angelo!

The not-so-good:

  • While it’s true that each ensemble character gets their special moment, the special moments are repetitive in structure. Character A starts doubting himself/herself and their purpose on this mission, Bad Guy A shows up and starts threatening everybody, all the other characters are somehow absent/trapped/incapacitated so that Character A has to do all the saving, Character A overcomes their self-doubt and saves everybody. Rinse and repeat for Hazel, Leo, Frank, and Piper. Jason as a different issue but his share of the story has the same structure.
  • As always, the romance. Personally, I feel that there was too much focus on the pairings. It would have been great to see everyone develop as individuals and not just as part of a pair.
  • And last but certainly not least: Nico’s big reveal. What the heck was that?! There’s not much I can say that wouldn’t be spoilerific but my issues boil down to 1) this reveal coming out of left field, and 2) my fangirl hopes and dreams being sunk into oblivion. It felt like a cop-out of sorts, considering that Nico has had minimal character development prior to this. If you want to discuss this further, DM me!

As the penultimate book in the Heroes of Olympus series, The House of Hades does a good job of setting up the last book in the series (due October next year). Part of me is eagerly waiting for the last book, but another part isn’t quite ready for Heroes of Olympus to end just yet.


fullybooked bannerAnd now, what you’ve been waiting for: Fully Booked (my favorite, totally kick-ass bookstore!), in cooperation with theislandergirl.com, is giving away a copy of The House of Hades to a lucky reader!

How to enter:
1. It’s simple! Just use the Rafflecopter widget below to earn entries for the electronic raffle. Ways to earn entries include:

  • Like the Fully Booked Facebook page (2 points)
  • Follow @_FullyBooked on Twitter (2 points)
  • Subscribe to my blog via email (5 points)
  • Tweet about the giveaway with the hashtag #hadesgiveaway, mentioning @_FullyBooked and @theislandergirl, and linking to this blog post (1 point per tweet, can be done once a day for the duration of the giveaway
  • Leave a comment answering the question “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?” (2 points)
  • Follow @theislandergirl on Twitter (2 points)

TOTAL – 20 points

2. The giveaway will run from October 10, 2013 12am to October 17, 2013 12am. All entries must be in by October 17 at 12 am.

3. The Rafflecopter widget will choose a winner randomly. The chosen winner will be announced on this blog and will be contacted via email, Facebook, and/or Twitter. The winner will be contacted via email and/or Twitter and must respond to the notification within 3 days. If the winner doesn’t reply within 3 days, a new winner will be chosen.

The Fine Print:

  • The House of Hades giveaway is open to Philippine residents only.
  • The House of Hades will be shipped to the winner via courier. The shipping fee will be covered by me. If the winner is in Metro Manila, maybe we can meet up too.
  • I reserve the right to disqualify raffle entries from Twitter accounts that have no content and were only opened specifically for joining contests.
  • If you’re the lucky winner, Fully Booked and I would greatly appreciate it if you tweeted or posted a photo on Facebook of yourself with the book and tagged us. You’re NOT required to do so but it would be awesome if you did 🙂

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

39 Replies to ““The House of Hades” by Rick Riordan book review and giveaway”

  1. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    All kinds of suffering. From physical pain being inflicted, to emotional and psychological pain. Won’t be surprised to see evil people there, spreading misery. Demons, other evil creatures, and whoever invented high heels.

  2. I would see horrible things, my greatest fear and mostly depression. I cannot say that I would always be sad in my (more like eternal)stay there, for as what Albus Dumbledore always say, “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” I would probably see fear itself but of course, love will always be there.

  3. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    laistrygonian giants, titans, minotaurs, bad cyclops, eidolons, empousais.. all of which Percy and the other demigods had slain before.. of course darkness, evil and misery.. that’s what Tartarus is all about.

  4. If I do fell in Tartarus I wood see the scariest of the scariest, and also the most evil of all. I would see extraordinary objects, even creatures that would horrify me. I would always be looking for a way back home.

  5. hmmm, i might see some of Medusa’s Pinoy facebook friends, like Zuma, Galema and Valentina. And Robina Gokongwei’s “alleged” twin brother ?! #Scary !

  6. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    All the monsters Percy and the others have and have not encountered yet; All the horrible monsters you could ever imagine, such as the empousai (Kelli included), the manticore, the spirits of the fallen Roman demigods who fought against Percy, Frank, & Hazel.. the River of Fire, and the River of Lamentation.

  7. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    I hate cockroach in all sizes and shapes (and nationality) but if there’s so much yucky roaches in Tartarus, i have no choice but to face my fear !

  8. This is great! I would love to get the book! I would buy it, but I am broke, and my mom refuses to buy books for me, since she says,”It’s a waste of money!”

  9. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    I’d see a scary monster. I’m not really an expert in monsters, or brave, or athletic, so I’ll probably die when I’d encounter just one monster and I wouldn’t get to see the rest.

    Or…I’d just see lots of darkness and rocks, because when I think about it, my clumsiness would get away in everything. I’d probably trip and black out…or die.

    But if Percy and Annabeth’s still there, I’d live long enough to meet lots of monsters I didn’t know existed! But I hope there’s food because I’d get hungry. 🙂

    1. I’d see a scary monster. I’m not really an expert in monsters, or brave, or athletic, so I’ll probably die when I’d encounter just one monster and I wouldn’t get to see the rest.

      >> You know what? I didn’t think of that. I’d probably die after the first or second monster too >_<

  10. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    Something creepy and unusual. Monsters? Does shrek live there? jkXD

  11. “If you fell into Tartarus, what would you see there?”

    My worst nightmare come to life, probably. Say, lots of monsters so scary seeing one would paralyze you.

  12. More to see in Tartarus:

    Maggots. Lots of it. Gross, ugly, monstrous creatures…beings that I simply do not and would not want to even be reminded of.


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