Review: Circe

Circe by Madeline Miller

Genres: Fantasy, Historical Fiction (mythology)
Maturity Level: 4
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child—not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power—the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.

Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus.

But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love.


I put off even adding Circe to my tbr for a really long time because I figured it had to be over-hyped. I mean, Song of Achilles was fine, but it wasn’t that great, and people were talking about this book like it’s the book of the decade or something. I figured it was all just feminism-hype. But y’all. I am here to tell you, this book is everything is was made out to be.

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Favorites February: The Battle of the Labyrinth

Favorites February

Hello friends! Welcome back to Favorites February! This week I’m looking at book #4 in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, The Battle of the Labyrinth. I had a great time re-reading this one, although the books are getting a little longer, and finishing this one in a week was a bit more work! However, there was a LOT more that I’d forgotten in this book than the others. It was good for a re-read.

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Synopsis

Camp Half-Blood is in trouble. Again. The evil Titan lord, Kronos, and his army have found a way into camp using the ancient Labyrinth, if only they can find a way to navigate it. Percy, Annabeth, Tyson, and Grover head into the deadly maze in hopes of finding its creator, Daedalus, and convincing him to help them before their enemies do. But on the way there will be monsters, traps, indecision, and the danger of getting lost. Assuming they don’t lose their minds first… Continue reading “Favorites February: The Battle of the Labyrinth”

Favorites February: The Titan’s Curse

Favorites February

Welcome back to Favorites February! This week I will be looking at the third book in the Percy Jackson series, The Titan’s Curse. This might be my favorite book in the original Percy Jackson series. There’s just so much to love about this book.

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Synopsis

Percy, Annabeth, Grover, and Thalia are making a special winter trip to rescue some half-bloods and bring them to camp. But when the monster proves tougher than they expected, Annabeth goes missing. Percy and Thalia join forces with the Hunters of Artemis to rescue Annabeth and save Olympus from a mysterious monster with the power to destroy the Gods. Continue reading “Favorites February: The Titan’s Curse”

Favorites February: The Sea of Monsters

Favorites February

Hi friends! Welcome back to Favorites February, where I am re-reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series and discussing it along the way. Up this week, The Sea of Monsters, #2 in the series. Honestly, I completely forgot how much I enjoyed this book, and had a great time re-discovering it’s awesomeness. Please feel free to join in the discussion in the comments! ❤

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Synopsis

Camp Half-Blood is in trouble. The magical tree that protects the borders from monsters has been poisoned, and the demigods are barely managing to stay alive. But Percy and Annabeth think they might just have a solution: the legendary Golden Fleece. Their journey to find it will take them through the perilous Sea of Monsters, on a route that very closely mirrors that of Odysseus in Homer’s The Odyssey. Yet all the while a bigger trouble is brewing… Continue reading “Favorites February: The Sea of Monsters”

Favorites February: The Lightning Thief

Favorites February

Hello friends, and welcome to the first annual Favorites February! This month I will be re-reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, and blogging about it as I go. This is one of my favorite middle-grade series, and I wish it had been around when I was a kid. I’ve really been enjoying the re-read. I got the box set for Christmas about three years ago and have never had the chance to read them, so I’m cracking these lovely books open for the first time and trying desperately not to ruin them!

First up, The Lightning Thief! 

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Synopsis

Percy didn’t ask to be a half-blood. It’s bad enough that he’s ADHD and dyslexic, and he’s been kicked out of six schools in six years, but he just found out his dad is a Greek god. That’s right, those Greek gods. Also, his best friend is half-goat, which is totally weird, his mom is missing, and his step-dad is a smelly jerk-face who is blaming him for his mom’s disappearance. Still, he gets to go to this cool summer camp where he learns sword fighting and archery and Ancient Greek, so life isn’t ALL bad. Until the gods issue a warning, and Percy only has until the summer solstice to prevent World War III. Three pre-teens trying to save the world. What could go wrong? Continue reading “Favorites February: The Lightning Thief”

Review: The Song of Achilles

51erEvChGpL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

Genres: Historical Fiction, Fiction
Maturity Rating: 5
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. Despite their difference, Achilles befriends the shamed prince, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’ mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. 

But when word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, Achilles must go to war in distant Troy and fulfill his destiny. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus goes with him, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.


The Song of Achilles was just so completely different from what I was expecting that I’m not even really sure how to review it. I wasn’t expecting a love story AT ALL, but that’s essentially what the book was. I suppose if I was better versed in Greek History I wouldn’t have been surprised, or if I was any good at reading a synopsis properly, lol.

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Review: The Blood of Olympus

18705209The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan

Series: The Heroes of Olympus
Genres: Action/Adventure, Young Adult, Kids (Middle Grade), Fiction
Maturity Level: 3
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆


Though the Greek and Roman crewmembers of the Argo II have made progress in their many quests, they still seem no closer to defeating the earth mother, Gaea. Her giants have risen—all of them—and they’re stronger than ever. They must be stopped before the Feast of Spes, when Gaea plans to have two demigods sacrificed in Athens. She needs their blood—the blood of Olympus—in order to wake.

The demigods are having more frequent visions of a terrible battle at Camp Half-Blood. The Roman legion from Camp Jupiter, led by Octavian, is almost within striking distance. Though it is tempting to take the Athena Parthenos to Athens to use as a secret weapon, the friends know that the huge statue belongs back on Long Island, where it “might” be able to stop a war between the two camps.

The Athena Parthenos will go west; the Argo II will go east. The gods, still suffering from multiple personality disorder, are useless. How can a handful of young demigods hope to persevere against Gaea’s army of powerful giants? As dangerous as it is to head to Athens, they have no other option. They have sacrificed too much already. And if Gaea wakes, it is game over.


I have mixed feelings about The Blood of Olympus.

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Review: The House of Hades

12127810The House of Hades by Rick Riordan

Series: The Heroes of Olympus
Genres: Action/Adventure, Young Adult, Kids (Middle Grade), Fiction
Maturity Level: 3
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆


At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy’s instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea’s forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

They have no choice. If the demigods don’t succeed, Gaea’s armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.


House of Hades continues stylistically and thematically where Mark of Athena left off. This book continues on a slightly darker path than the previous three. While Riordan’s trademark sense of humor is still present, it feel subdued compared to previous books. The whole thing feels a lot more serious than any of Riordan’s other books, probably appropriate considering the context of impending world destruction and a journey through Tartarus. Yet the story continues to be compelling, fun, interesting, and well researched, everything I have come to expect from Riordan. Continue reading “Review: The House of Hades”

Review: The Mark of Athena

12127750The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan

Series: The Heroes of Olympus
Genres: Action/Adventure, Young Adult, Kids (Middle Grade), Fiction
Maturity Level: 3
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆


In The Son of Neptune, Percy, Hazel, and Frank met in Camp Jupiter, the Roman equivalent of Camp Half-blood, and traveled to the land beyond the gods to complete a dangerous quest. The third book in the Heroes of Olympus series will unite them with Jason, Piper, and Leo. But they number only six—who will complete the Prophecy of Seven?

The Greek and Roman demigods will have to cooperate in order to defeat the giants released by the Earth Mother, Gaea. Then they will have to sail together to the ancient land—Greece itself—to find the Doors of Death. What exactly are the Doors of Death? Much of the prophecy remains a mystery…


I’ll be honest, the thing I was most looking forward to about this book was reading from Annabeth’s point of view. Annabeth has been my favorite character since the first book of the first series, and finally getting to read about her was a real treat, even if it did involve several rather frightening spider sequences. Continue reading “Review: The Mark of Athena”

Review: The Son of Neptune

9520360The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

Series: The Heroes of Olympus
Genres: Action/Adventure, Young Adult, Kids (Middle Grade), Fiction
Maturity Level: 3
View on Goodreads
Rating: ⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆


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 wished 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 infront 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 of the Heroes of Olympus series introduces new demigods, revives fearsome monsters, and features other remarkable creatures, all destined to play a part in the Prophesy of Seven.


As the second book in the Heroes of Olympus series, one might expect a bit of a sophomore slump from the Son of Neptune. But it maintains that fast pace, sense of humor, and emotion that made The Lost Hero stand out. Continue reading “Review: The Son of Neptune”