Ciarra Review’s – The Burning Maze
Hello everyone and welcome back to the blog!
As I mentioned in my goals for 2019 post, I want to finish at least 1 novel every month. I am already on the right track with this goal by finishing my first book of the year!
The Trials of Apollo, The Burning Maze
By Rick Riordan
I’ve talked about this in previous blog posts, but I enjoy reading books across all the various age groups, and Rick Riordan has been a long time favorite of mine for the middle/young adult range.
I started reading his books when I was 9-11 years old, if not younger. His whole universe is well constructed and fun (also dangerous but that is to be expected). With that in mind, I think the Trials of Apollo is a very interesting addition to this whole world of gods and demigods.
While in a lot of ways, I would say a person could probably start reading any one of his series in this universe and relatively understand what’s happening, without reading the previous books (in fact, the first books I ever read in this world was the second Percy Jackson book, and I had no problem following and it made me want to read the rest), but I don’t think you can really do that with this Apollo series.
The whole plot of this story is so dependent on the events of Heroes of Olympus (which of course is easier to understand after reading the Percy Jackson series too), and that you have read that series beforehand. Could you still read this series without reading the other books? Of course, but again, I think compared to all the others, too much context and reasons to who-whose and why are they important, would be completely lost on the unseasoned reader to this world.
With that said, let me get into some of my thoughts on this third book in the series.
The Burning Maze in my opinion definitely falls into what I’ve noticed to be Riordan’s formula for structuring his series–that is to say that I find the third to fourth book is often…transitional? What I mean by this is that it often feels like not much is happening in the third book of the series. Don’t get me wrong, there is a lot of action in the Burning Maze and some gut wrenching scenes. I won’t lie…this books had one of the most tragic deaths of a character in this universe, Personally though, I was not that invested in said character, so while their actual death was not too impactful to me, the reaction of other characters to that death was more meaningful for me.
It didn’t help that I was going through my year-long reading slump when I started this book, but I feel that this book is the build up to something crazier to follow. Again, the third book always feels like that transition to me, which kind leaves me a little on edge and anxious, but in a good way. Usually, something that doesn’t feel like a major detail in the third books comes back to play a major role.
I think two of my favorite things from Burning Maze were…
- All the succulent/cacti dryads! They are such cool characters, plus I just love those strange little plants.
- The continuing character development of Apollo/Lester! This book I think marked a big step in Apollo’s growth from this egocentric god to someone with some real empathy. I won’t spoil it here…but he does something that I honestly wouldn’t have ever expected this character to do.
Overall, I rated this book 4/5 stars on Goodreads, because it was a very solid book in the series, and I did enjoy it. Maybe a little slow for the first half, but the second half of the book definitely lays some major whammies on you.
The next book in this series comes out September 24, 2019 and is titled The Tyrant’s Tomb! I’m very much looking forward to reading it.
So yeah, these are just some of the quick things I had to say about this book. If you enjoyed this little review, please make sure to leave a comment letting me know!
What are some of your favorite Gods & demigod books?
What would you want me to read next?
Until next time!