Marshmallow reviews The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan

Marshmallow reviewed the first book of Rick Riordan’s Heroes of Olympus series: The Lost Hero, as well as the second book, The Son of Neptune. Today she reviews the third book: The Mark of Athena.

Marshmallow reviews The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.
Marshmallow reviews The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.

Marshmallow’s Quick Take: If you liked reading some of Rick Riordan’s other books or just like reading about Greek and Roman mythology, then this might be the book for you. 

Marshmallow’s Summary (with Spoilers): Before you read this blog post, you might want to read my other reviews of this series.

With the Argo II, a flying ship with many cool additions, Annabeth and the three half-bloods who were the main characters in the first book (Jason, Leo, and Piper), together with their protector Coach Gleeson Hedge, set off to find Camp Jupiter, the camp for Roman half-bloods. When they arrive, Annabeth is introduced to some of the main characters from the second book: Frank, Hazel, Reyna, Octavian, and others. Percy Jackson is also there, and Annabeth is glad to see him.

They spend some time in Camp Jupiter, until somebody in the Argo II fires at the camp inhabitants. Octavian convinces the Romans that the Greeks are attacking them. The Romans start to attack the Greeks from the Argo II so the crew has to run.

The Seven half-bloods that will make up the team responding to the Prophecy of Seven have to flee. Here once again is that prophecy:

Seven half-bloods shall answer the call,
To storm or fire, the world must fall,
An oath to keep with a final breath,
And foes bear arms to the Doors of Death

These are the Greek demigods in the group: Percy Jackson, son of Poseidon; Annabeth Chase, daughter of Athena; Piper McLean, daughter of Aphrodite; and Leo Valdez, son of Hephaestus. These are the Roman demigods: Jason Grace, son of Jupiter; Hazel Levesque, daughter of Pluto; and finally, Frank Zhang, son of Mars. And now people at Camp Jupiter think that they are bad guys and follow in pursuit.

Soon the seven half-bloods figure out it was Leo who fired at the Camp, but he cannot explain why he did it. And Annabeth has her own secrets she is hiding from the others: she hasn’t told them about the mark of Athena yet.

Marshmallow is reading The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.
Marshmallow is reading The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.

Marshmallow’s Review: I think that this is a great book that really makes the reader want to keep reading till the end. Once you have read the first chapter you will have to read the whole book. 

The Mark Of Athena is a great book, but it is part of a series, and this one especially will make the reader have to read the fourth book, The House Of Hades. Also before reading this book, you should definitely have read, at least, the first two books in the series: The Lost Hero and The Son of Neptune. I also think that you should read all of the previous books in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (which is apparently abbreviated as PJO).

Most of the characters in this book have appeared in some of the earlier books, but we definitely learn a lot more about each of them, and we do meet some new characters (like Echo and Narcissus, for example). At the end of the book you are probably going to be so interested in the stories of these characters that you will just have to read the whole series.

Marshmallow’s Rating: 100%.

Marshmallow rates The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan 100%.
Marshmallow rates The Mark of Athena (Book 3 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan 100%.

Caramel reviews How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton

Caramel has been reading all sorts of books these days, but picture books are always among his favorites. Today he reviews for the book bunnies blog a picture book by author-illustrators Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton: How to Catch a Monster. As usual, Sprinkles is asking questions and taking notes.

Caramel reviews How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton.
Caramel reviews How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton.

Sprinkles: So Caramel, what made you want to review this book?

Caramel: I like it.

S: So can you tell us what it is about?

C: It’s about a little boy who is trying to catch the monster in his closet. And then they become friends.

S: That sounds scary first and then fun later.

C: Yep. It is. Apparently the monster practices how to roar!

S: Hmm, kind of like you practicing playing an instrument or singing, right?

C: Yep, I guess so.

S: What else do you think monsters do?

C: This one burps! And his burp smells like strawberries and lime. Which is pretty disgusting.

S: Why do you think so? I like strawberries, and mixed with lime, they might make a neat chewing gum flavor for instance.

C: Yes, but thinking of it as a burp smell makes it pretty disgusting.

S: I can see that. But I am guessing that the monster’s burp smells nice because the monster is actually not a bad monster. Right?

C: Yes. That’s right!

Caramel is reading How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton. He is on the pages where the boy who is narrating the story is trying to catch the monster in his closet using his "super-sticky ninja-nabbing net".
Caramel is reading How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton. He is on the pages where the boy who is narrating the story is trying to catch the monster in his closet using his “super-sticky ninja-nabbing net”.

S: Did you notice that on each two-page spread, there are four lines of text, all written in rhyme?

C: Let me see. Oh yes, that is true. There are rhyming words at the end of the second and fourth lines!

S: That would make it more fun to read out loud. Don’t you think?

C: Yes. “Yet” and “net”, “miss” and “this”, “sad” and “mad”, “mistake” and “awake”. You’re right! It would be more fun to read out loud!

S: So maybe when we are done with this review, we can read it out loud together. What do you think?

C: Okay, I like that idea!

S: So what three words would you use to describe this book?

C: “Fun”, “rhyming”, and “colorful”. Or maybe “imaginative”.

S: It is true this is a really imaginative book! A lot of little bunnies think there is a monster in their closet, or sometimes under their bed. And this book seems to play with that idea and make it fun.

C: Yep!

S: I know you close the door to your closet every night. Would you like to think that there is a monster like this one inside?

C: I’ve checked my closet. There is no such thing in mine.

S: But say there was? Would it be fun to have a playful monster like this in there?

C: It could be cool. This monster is fun. Hmm, maybe I should check my closet again.

S: Okay, we can go look together. After you wrap up this review by saying …

C: Stay tuned for more book bunny reviews! And also there are no monsters in my closet!

Caramel has enjoyed reading How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton, and recommends it to all little bunnies who love monsters and those others who are scared of the monster in their closets.
Caramel has enjoyed reading How to Catch a Monster by Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton, and recommends it to all little bunnies who love monsters and those others who are scared of the monster in their closets.

Marshmallow reviews The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan

Marshmallow reviewed several books by Rick Riordan before. (See her reviews of The Lightning ThiefThe Sea of Monsters, and The Titan’s Curse. You might also like to check out her reviews for Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods and Percy Jackson’s Greek Heroes.) Last week she wrote about the first book of his Heroes of Olympus series: The Lost Hero. This week she is on to the second book: The Son of Neptune. Sprinkles, who has just finished the book, is asking questions and taking notes.

Marshmallow reviews The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.
Marshmallow reviews The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.

Sprinkles: So Marshmallow, what do you want to tell our readers about The Son of Neptune, another 500-pager from Rick Riordan?

Marshmallow: I think if someone liked other books by Rick Riordan, this is not going to be a disappointment. It is a very good book!

S: What is the story about? What happens in the book?

M: It’s about Percy Jackson, who doesn’t remember anything. He gets himself to Camp Jupiter, which is a place for Roman demigods, half-bloods who are children of Roman gods.

S: So you probably need to know who Percy is and so on. You should have read the previous books in both of the series, it seems like. Right? 

M: Yes.

S: In the first series, Percy Jackson and the Olympians, we meet Percy Jackson, a son of Poseidon, who goes to Camp Half-Blood, where there are other demigods, that is, children of Greek gods. In this second series, Heroes of Olympus, we learn that there is also a camp for demigods who are children of Roman gods.

M: Yes, in The Lost Hero, we learned about Camp Jupiter, but there, the main characters were also in Camp Half-Blood. In this book we finally get to go to Camp Jupiter.

S: Yes, I think the author set the stage for that very well in the first book of the series.

Marshmallow is reading The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.
Marshmallow is reading The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan.

S: So let me see… Who is your favorite character in this book? 

M: Probably Reyna.

S: Why?

M: Because she is a strong leader. And she is a good fighter. She is not a main character in this book actually, but she will become more important in the later books in the series.

S: Hmm, spoilers spoilers! I haven’t yet read the other books. But I liked Reyna too. She is not squeamish and she is not mean. She is a strong leader, like you say. She holds on to her principles and stands up to bullies.

M: Yes. I agree. But I must repeat that you cannot really get much out of this book if you have not read the first book of the series, but you also probably should have read all five books of the first series. People from the first series do show up or at least are mentioned. So to get the most out of this book, you should probably read things in order.

S: I agree. And the people from those earlier books show up unexpectedly sometimes. I think Riordan does a great job making these connections.

M: The plot is really complicated even when you have read all the other books.

S: So you are not going to tell us what that plot is, it seems like.

M: Well, in the first book we learned that Gaea is evil. And she is angry at the Olympian gods and wants to get rid of them. In this book that thread continues, with a few new plot twists that come with the new characters introduced to the story.

S: Yes, I think that is a good summary without giving away much! But this distinction between Greek and Roman gods, where Percy is the son of Poseidon, but in this book, people think he is the son of Neptune, the Roman version; that part was a bit fuzzy at first, wasn’t it?

M: Yeah, it was kind of confusing how they are the same but not the same, but in this book it is explained a bit more, so I think I understood it better.

S: Yes, I appreciated talking it over with you, and we figured things out together a bit, right?

M: Yes, i suggest that parents might want to read these books, too, so they can discuss them with their little ones.

S: I definitely am enjoying reading them!

M: They are good books! And I am really glad that I read Percy Jackson’s Greek Heroes before reading this new series. Some of those characters show up and it is good to know their backstories.

S: I know you are trying to get me to read that book for a while Marshmallow. We’ll see. For now I will continue with this Heroes of Olympus series. So let us wrap up this review. What is your final verdict on The Son of Neptune?

M: I rate it 100%.

Marshmallow rates The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan 100%.
Marshmallow rates The Son of Neptune (Book 2 of the Heroes of Olympus Series) by Rick Riordan 100%.

Caramel reviews Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne

Caramel has reviewed several Magic Tree House books already: Night of the Ninjas (Magic Tree House #5), Afternoon on the Amazon (Magic Tree House #6), Knights and Castles (Magic Tree House Fact Tracker #2), Sunset of the Sabertooth (Magic Tree House #7), and Midnight on the Moon (Magic Tree House #8). Today he wanted to talk about book #9: Dolphins at Daybreak. As usual, Sprinkles is taking notes and asking questions.

Caramel reviews Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne.
Caramel reviews Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne.

Sprinkles: It has been a while since you last reviewed a Magic Tree House book Caramel. Can you remind our readers the premise of these books?

Caramel: There are two kids called Jack and Annie. They find a magical tree house in the first book, and it takes them anywhere in a book if they say “I wish we could go there.”

S: And in each book, they go somewhere different, right?

C: Yes, and they can come back.

S: That is good. Where do they go in this book?

C: I think they go somewhere with a mini-sub.

S: What’s a mini-sub?

C: It’s a little submarine, a ship that goes under the sea. They go under the sea with it and they find out that it has a leak.

S: Hmm, that might be dangerous!

C: Oh no, they survive, don’t worry. But they get chased by a giant octopus and there is a dolphin and they see hammerhead sharks. Nothing too dangerous!

Caramel is reading Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne.
Caramel is reading Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne.

S: Alright, so they have an adventure in the ocean, and you get to learn about ocean life, right?

C: Yes.

S: You have read a lot of books about sea life, in particular you read a ton of books about narwhals, right?

C: Yep. I reviewed all of the Narwhal and Jelly books I read, too.

S: The Magic Tree House books are mainly fiction but accompanying them there are fact trackers. You even reviewed one of those, remember?

C: Yes, I reviewed Knights and Castles (Magic Tree House Fact Tracker #2).

S: There is a fact tracker book on dolphins and sharks, too. Did you read that one?

C: No. I do not think we have that book yet.

S: But maybe there were some new facts in this book too? Did you learn anything new by reading this book?

C: I never knew about mini-subs. They are cool!

S: Yes, they are! Apparently they are also called “midget submarines“!

C: I didn’t know that!

S: Okay, Caramel, this might be a good time to wrap up our review. As usual I will ask you for three words to describe this book. What do you say?

C: Fun, imaginative, fantasy.

S: Why do you say fantasy?

C: A magic tree house sounds fantastical doesn’t it?

S: You’re right. It is quite fantastical! And it is also a great idea to explore a new topic in every book, right? Are you going to read and review for the blog any more Magic Tree House books?

C: Yep. But for now, stay tuned for more book bunny reviews!

Caramel enjoyed reading Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne and recommends it to all little bunnies who enjoyed reading about Jack and Annie's earlier adventures.
Caramel enjoyed reading Dolphins at Daybreak (Magic Tree House #9) by Mary Pope Osborne and recommends it to all little bunnies who enjoyed reading about Jack and Annie’s earlier adventures.