Creatures, Gems, and Water REVIEWING The Son of Neptune

Salve! Welcome back to another review here at The Real World According To Sam! 

Today is another day that we countdown to Nero!!

We are 7 weeks and 6 days away from the release of The Tower of Nero (October 6, 2020)!

This is a The Lost Hero SPOILER LAND, clearly, because this is a sequel. 
This review of The Son of Neptune is completely spoiler free for this installment.

Let's get into it. 

The Son of Neptune

Author: Rick Riordan
Genre: YA Fantasy
Year: 2011

The Son of Neptune


Percy is confused. When he awoke from his long sleep, he didn't know much more than his name. His brain fuzz is lingering, even after the wolf Lupa told him he is a demigod and trained him to fight with the pen/sword in his pocket. Somehow Percy manages to make it to a camp for half-bloods, despite the fact that he has to keep killing monsters along the way. But the camp doesn't ring any bells with him. The only thing he can recall from his past is another name: Annabeth. 

Hazel is supposed to be dead. When she lived before,she didn't do a very good job of it. Sure, she was an obedient daughter, even when her mother was possessed by greed. But that was the problem -- when the Voice took over her mother and commanded Hazel to use her "gift" for an evil purpose, Hazel couldn't say no. Now, because of her mistake, the future of the world is at risk. Hazel wishes she could ride away from it all on the stallion that appears in her dreams. 

Frank is a klutz. His grandmother says he is descended from heroes and can be anything he wants to be, but he doesn't see it. He doesn't even know who his father is. He keeps hoping Apollo will claim him, because the only thing he is good at is archery -- although not good enough to win camp war games. His bulky physique makes him feel like an ox, especially in front of Hazel, his closest friend at camp. He trusts her completely -- enough to share the secret he holds close to his heart. 

Beginning at the "other" camp for half-bloods and extending as far as the land beyond the gods, this breathtaking second installment in the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophecy of Seven. 


This is book two of the Heroes of Olympus series. Instead of being a fully direct sequel to The Lost Hero and continuing the journey with the previous three main characters we met (Jason, Leo, and Piper), we get to see what Percy Jackson has been up to and meet two new characters! That's right, we are switching things up again. So just like last time, where we had three new perspectives telling different chapters of the story, we get three OTHER characters telling the story. This time though, one voice is familiar, because one of them is Percy, sass master supreme. The other two are Frank and Hazel. We will talk more about them soon. 

First off, we finally know what the heck happened to Percy! Why wasn't he there in the last book? Because he was over at Camp Jupiter where Jason used to be, also with memory loss. That's right everybody, Percy Jackson has amnesia. But don't fret, he still remembers how to be sassy. When this book starts off, Percy is under attack by Gorgons. So nothing new really. He finds his way to Camp Jupiter and learns all about it. Camp Jupiter is a Roman camp, and a kind of opposite or parallel to Camp Half-Blood. Both camps have demigods, but they have different parentage (kind of), and neither knows about the other at the moment. It's kind of messy, but aren't demigod adventures ALWAYS messy? 

So, the Roman camp is very strict and disciplined, and they aren't very much like Camp Half-Blood. However, Percy can't fully remember Camp Half-Blood, so he is having to relearn everything he knows, from a different perspective. Camp Jupiter divides up campers into Legions, which are like battle units, instead of parental based cabins. Percy is "adopted" by Frank and Hazel in the Twelfth Legion, the misfit legion of the camp. Together, the three end up going on a quest because again, that's what demigods do! They face certain peril and doom, all in the hopes of getting to rest peacefully for a few months at a time. A few years or even a century would be nice, but none of these demigods seems to be that lucky. Do we really want them to be, though? If they weren't in danger, we wouldn't have such fun stories to read. Sad to say, their pain is currently my pleasure. 

There are a few references to the previous book within this one, as some mini-baddies mention the names of our new trio from book 1. Also, the events in this story help build up the larger threat these demigods will all be facing. The first half of the book is Percy's life at Camp Jupiter, getting to know how these work, and getting to know the demigods in his legion. The next half is pure adventure as we hit the road with Percy, Frank and Hazel. 

One of the strengths of this series is the diversity of the characters. All of the characters are equally important, with different abilities, as well as different cultures and backgrounds. Frank is Chinese Canadian. He is very quiet and awkward, but strong. He is also very self-conscious and unsure of himself. Hazel is African-American and was from New Orleans, Louisiana in her previous life. She is a daughter of Pluto (Roman version of Hades), and she was from the 1920s, originally. Hazel is strong, but she has older perspectives and has an older way of talking. Her being from an older time and being back from the dead makes her a bit of an outcast at Camp Jupiter. In the previous book we had Piper, who was a Native American (Cherokee) with the ability to charmspeak people, and Leo, a Hispanic from Texas who can withstand fire and likes to invent. We also see the return of Nico Di Angelo, son of Hades, although he doesn't play a large role in this book. Every character is important, but they are all distinct and relatable in their own ways. They have their own struggles and strengths that make them imperative to the quests they go on.   

The plot is, as usual, dangerous, twisty, and fun. We go up from San Francisco where Camp Jupiter is, up to Portland and Alaska, with lots of dangerous stops along the way. We get to see fights with gorgons, basilisks, gegenees (Earthborns), and cyclopes, among many others. As usual, the world of demigods is full of creepy creatures out to make a name for themselves as henchmen to the most powerful bidder. Percy gets to do his Percy thing, while Frank gets to learn his parentage and therefore, his abilities. Hazel gets to find out how to make her powers work in a different way, while setting out to right the wrongs of her past. It's a really good time overall. 

This book, for me, was more fun than the last book, because we get Percy back, but both books equally develop the new characters and throw in new twists and turns. They both bring together a new group with differing strengths and weaknesses. All the characters are interesting, even if I lean towards liking certain ones more because of familiarity. 

I give The Son of Neptune a Lone Star rating of ✯✯✯✯. This series is off to a really good start with the first two books, and I can't wait to talk about the rest.

This concludes another review here at The Real World According To Sam, where I bring the books straight to your screen and even provide my own two cents about them. 
Previous reviews for the Heroes of Olympus series are available if you click on a cover below!

To view previous reviews for the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series, click on any of the covers below!