Instead of waiting another year for the next summer at Camp Half-Blood, this book takes place a couple days before the winter solstice. Instead of going through the drama of seeing Thalia once again, this book skips over it and goes right to a mission that the main group (you know, Percy, Grover and Annabeth) plus Thalia, has to do, recruiting some new half-blood kids named Nico and Bianca DiAngelo. There's a tiny screw-up and a fight about not sticking together, whilst Annabeth is missing and possibly dead (the first time, it was Percy's mom, then Grover in the second, and now Annabeth) and we also have some new main characters; some obnoxious hunters who are all female, who see boys the same way Muslims do to girls, except boys here are as dumb as they come. The worst part of it is, Percy is under pressure by Nico to protect Bianca, especially after they find out an interesting back story about the brother and sister, plus only because of dreams, Percy knows that Annabeth and huntress Artemis are at the hands of Luke, and ronos, the possible worst antagonist in The Last Olympian, is being resurrected. That's the least of the group's worries however, when the prophecy spoils that someone is going to perish by the hands of a grown-up.
If you go right to this book from The Sea of Monsters, you may miss Tyson, but at least he gives an appearance. The teenager drama is genuinely crafted enough, even though I was worried it would be bad during the Capture the Flag game, but after that, all hell breaks loose, on the team, not on us readers. There are mysteries everywhere in this book, and our heroes go from one place to another, action scene after another with hints of bravery and wit. This is also a Percy Jackson story where like Tyson at the end of the second novel, people have to make tough choices on what they want to do for the rest of their life, and for some, it's whether to believe Luke, notably for Thalia and Bianca. The truth is, I don't really think Luke is a terrible guy. He seems compassionate yet has a temper, one of those wild-card villains that shouldn't be the primary target but often is. Some readers may question why Luke is so mad at the gods despite all the info we're given, and I was a bit curious myself, but in this chapter, the gods of Olympus actually really help the gang and it partially shows. Simply told, we need more novels like Percy Jackson.