Hello and welcome to the Percy Jackson Project! I know it has been a few months, but now that we’re cozy in the new year we are coming to a new start with The Demigod Diaries. The book includes short stories, art, and puzzles about the characters of Percy Jackson and the Olympians and The Heroes of Olympus. I am really excited to dive back into The Percy Jackson Project, and I hope you all are excited too, so let’s dive in!
Letter from Camp Half-Blood
Rick Riordan opens The Demigod Diaries in the familiar format of a letter addressed directly to the reader. I absolutely adore this tradition. The technique provides the reader with insight on what happens in the rest of the book in Riordan’s signature style.
The Diary of Luke Castellan
The first of the short stories included is an excerpt from Luke’s diary. I enjoyed this story a lot as it gave me insight into Luke’s character. His motivations and actions in the original story are all seen through Percy’s lens, and so I appreciated the opportunity to have Luke as a narrator for a change. The story is a fairly straightforward adventure with Luke and Thalia that leads directly into discovering Annabeth. I loved getting a glimpse at what these characters were like closer to the start of their journeys.
Percy Jackson and the Staff of Hermes
The second story in The Demigod Diaries gives us an amusing peek into Percy and Annabeth’s relationship. Again, it’s a straightforward adventure, this one perhaps more lighthearted than the first. I welcome any chance to see what Percy’s life is like when he’s not saving the world, and this fluffy story hit my sweet spots. Nevertheless, there was a great deal of foreshadowing both here and in the first story. Percy Jackson and the Staff of Hermes takes place between The Last Olympian and The Lost Hero, so one can read it without having read any books in The Heroes of Olympus. The story sows seeds, however, for the books that are to come.
Leo Valdez and the Quest for Buford
Of all the stories in this book, I think Leo Valdez and the Quest for Buford is my favorite. I always say that my favorite stories are the ones where we get to experience the relationships between characters. Piper, Jason, and Leo have one of the most solid friendships I have seen in the media. Certainly their bond is one of the best parts of The Heroes of Olympus as a whole. This story shows not just how well they know one another, but also how much they value each other. I absolutely loved it.
Son of Magic
The fourth and final story is not actually written by Rick Riordan. Instead, he invited his son Haley to contribute his own story set in the demigod universe. There is a touching note from Rick about how Percy Jackson and the Olympians started out as a story he created for Haley, and the way that Percy and Haley grew up together. Son of Magic itself is a fantastic exploration of Alabaster, a demigod who sided with Kronos and is now paying the price. I have long been curious about that life is like for the demigods who fought on the opposite side of the war. By showing the aftermath of the war through the perspective of someone who did not side with Percy and the gods of Olympus, we have a very different narrative view. The whole story is fascinating, and Haley did a great job composing it.
The Demigod Diaries includes a number of games and puzzles scattered throughout the book, as well as illustrations. The black and white illustrations are all relevant expansions that provide context for what we read in the book. There are also full-color illustrations that show interpretations of various characters. The visual components definitely enhance the book and the art is charming.
The games and puzzles are all brain teasers, some of which rely on one’s knowledge of mythology and Rick Riordan’s books, and others which are simple games themed around the stories.
Also included in The Demigod Diaries is a hilarious interview with George and Martha, Hermes’ snakes. The snakes have always been engaging characters, so getting a closer look at their perspective is entertaining.
The Demigod Diaries is an absolutely excellent addition to the demigod universe. I am happy that I finally got around to reading it for myself, and am only sorry that it took so long! I highly recommend it to those who love Percy Jackson and have not read any of the extended material yet.
Next time I’ll be discussing The Sword of Summer, the first book in the Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard trilogy. I love Norse mythology just as much as, if not more than, Greek and Roman mythology. So this will be a fun ride!
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