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Reviewed by:
  • The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
  • April Spisak
Riordan, Rick The Hidden Oracle. Disney Hyperion, 2016 376p (The Trials of Apollo)
ISBN 978-1-4847-3274-8 $19.99 R Gr. 5-8

Apollo has been cast out by Zeus, and he won’t be welcomed back until he undergoes some hardships and learns important lessons—but geez, that’s tough when you are stuck in the body of a mortal teen boy. Off he goes to Camp Half-Blood (Percy Jackson fans will be thrilled with the significant amount of character and setting overlap here) to enlist some help, losing little of his imperious tone or haughty observations about meat sacks (humans) and their weaknesses as he travels. There are some serious problems brewing involving Oracles, the Roman emperor Nero, and the likely ruination of the world, but it’s all told in such a snappy, quick-paced, snarky way that there’s never any doubt that Apollo and his allies will save the day, at least for this go round, as the book ends with Apollo still not forgiven and restored to his godly self. Riordan fans will find all of the key elements here: wisecracking narration, underdog kid turned hero (well, god turned underdog turned hero in this case), mythological core, and robust side characters who round out the field. This is familiar territory for Riordan, but the formula works so well, and Apollo is just so appealingly unpleasant, that there’s little to fault in this adventure. A hearty glossary offers context for locations, characters, and historical references used throughout the book. [End Page 593]



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