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Book Review: The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan

Title: The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #4)
Author: Rick Riordan
PubDate: May 6, 2008
Page count: 341

“Good fighting with you, Seaweed Brain.
– Annabeth to Percy

Yet again, Percy is looking for a new school to attend but just before it could start, he manages to blow it up into flames. It’s Goode High School where Paul Blofis, his mom’s new boyfriend, teaches. But honestly, it’s  not his fault that monsters are following him everywhere he goes. Percy also meets Rachel Elizabeth Dare, again. They’ve met before at the Hoover Dam and though she’s a mortal, she can see through the mist. So when Percy is attacked at the freshmen orientation of Goode High School, Rachel Elizabeth Dare sees it all.

This fourth book of Percy Jackson and the Olympians centers on Percy and his friends as they journey inside the Labyrinth which was created by Daedalus. They believe that Luke would use the Labyrinth to invade Camp Half-Blood because it has many entrances and one could lead Luke and his army of monsters directly to the heart of Camp Half-Blood. They’re convinced that Luke is trying to get Adriane’s string from Daedalus because it could help them navigate the Labyrinth easily. Percy must convince Daedalus, who they think lives inside the Labyrinth, not to give Luke Adriane’s string and to side with them.

This time the quest is lead by Annabeth and she chooses Percy, Tyson and Grover as her companions. At first, Grover is against the idea of going to the Labyrinth because he hates underground but it’s his only chance of finding Pan, the god of the wild. So eventually they all set to the Labyrinth where new adventures, dangers, meetings, and more danger await them.

The Labyrinth is an endless maze, a trap made so no one could get out of it. Percy and his friends struggle inside but with some help they are able to survive, fortunately. During their quest inside the Labyrinth, they encounter monsters and other weird gods/demigods. They find Janus, a two faced god who guards doors,  Briares, the One Hundred Hand creature, Kampe, a horrifying evil she-dragon, Geryon and his ranch with Eurytion where they also find Nico di Angelo, son of Hades, and Hephaestus, god of craftsmen, who then leads Percy and Annabeth to Mount St. Helens where Percy meets some Telekhine and learns that they are reforging Krono’s scythe. Here, Percy and Annabeth had to separate and before they did, Annabeth surprised Percy with a kiss. (How long did I wait for that? Tsk. But then I had to remind myself that they were only 14!) The meeting with the Telekhine doesn’t turn so well that Percy has to summon a wave of his water power which causes a massive earthquake. Using too much power, it drains everything in Percy that when he wakes up again, he finds himself in the island of Ogygia with Calypso. Atlas is Calypso’s father and for being his daughter, the gods exiled her in that island and she can never get out of it.

Percy meeting Calypso is one of my favorite parts of the book. It’s just that my heart broke for Calypso because The Fates cursed her on falling in love with heroes. Once in a while they would send someone in the island who they knew would break her heart. How cruel is that? This time they send Percy because they knew that Calypso wouldn’t help but fall in love with him. She helps Percy recover and her beauty awes Percy that for a moment she confuses his feelings. Then Hephaestus eventually visits Ogygia to talk to Percy about what happened after he summoned the waves. When it’s time for Percy to leave, Calypso finally confesses to him what her fate is. She offers him immortality which means staying with her on the island for the rest of eternity. It’s a good offer for Percy because staying in the island means no more monsters and war but he’s not that kind of person. It’s hard for him but he must go and help his friends. And so he refuses Calypso’s offer and it’s so heartbreaking.

“As I sailed onto the lake I realized the Fates really were cruel. They sent Calypso someone she couldn’t help but love. But it worked both ways. For the rest of my life I would always be thinking about her. She would always be my biggest what if.”

After his secret visit at Ogygia, Percy returns to Camp Half-Blood only to see the other campers mourning his death. When they see him again, everyone is relieved especially Annabeth. Then Percy tells Chiron what Hephaestus had told him at Ogygia on how to find Daedalus in the Labyrinth. They need a mortal who can see through the mist and Percy just know someone who can help them. Rachel Elizabeth Dare.

They didn’t have a hard time convincing Rachel Elizabeth Dare to help them and so another adventure inside the Labyrinth begins. This time Luke’s minions capture them and after battling for their lives with the help of Mrs. O’Leary, a hellhound, they are able to get away. They’re also able to find Daedalus who turns out to be Quintus, their new sword instructor back at Camp Half-Blood and who is also Mrs. O’Leary’s master. They thought Daedalus could help them but they’re too late because Luke already promised Daedalus something in exchange of Adriane’s string. But it turns out that Luke doesn’t really keep his promises because right then his monsters and Kelli, the empousa who attacked Percy at Goode High School, attack Daedalus. Percy and his friends barely escapes with the help of Daedalus’ makeshift wings. They then head back to the camp.

On the way back to the camp, they discover Mount Othrys where they learn that Kronos has somehow possesses Luke’s body. Annabeth can’t still believe it but now that Kronos is alive again, they don’t have time to think about how. They need to reach camp to warn others. They run until they found Grover and Tyson who went a different way to look for Pan. This time, Grover finally found Pan after a long time of searching but instead of rejoicing, it breaks his heart. Because Pan has been dead a long time ago and his memories are only living because there are still creatures of the wild who believe that he’s alive. It’s sad but Grover has to move on and spread the news.

When Percy and his friends finally reach the Camp, minus Rachel, it’s when the battle begins. An army of monsters lead by Kampe invade the camp through the Labyrinth, injuring and killing some of the campers. But help comes like Daedalus and his hellhound, Mrs. O’Leary, Briares and Nico, who seems to trust Percy now. It’s an impossible battle to win but thanks to Grover who causes Panic, the monsters retreated.

The battle is over but everyone knows that as long as the Labyrinth exists, Luke and his army will always find a way to invade the camp. So Daedalus whose life force is tied to the Labyrinth decided to destroy it. Before dying, Daedalus gives Annabeth a laptop where his ideas and works are saved. He also leaves Mrs. O’Leary to Percy.

On his fifteenth birthday, Sally, Percy’s mother, prepares a small party for Percy. Paul is there and he and Percy had a small man-to-man talk about Sally. Paul wants to marry Sally and he’s asking Percy for his blessing. Well, it’s kinda like that. Poseidon also surprises Percy with a sudden visit. It is to ask him what really happened since gods are forbidden to intervene with battles and to give him a gift, a sand dollar. Nico also shows up, telling Percy he knows a way to finally defeat Luke.

This is probably one of the longest reviews I’ve ever written. But I enjoyed it! And I loved this book even though it has so many monsters. 🙂


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