The writing in this book was pretty much on par with the first. Riordan keeps up the sarcastic, witty voice of Percy, but also allows for the more serious moments, like when Percy feels rejected or conflicted. The pacing was also much better than in The Lightning Thief, with the action occurring much faster (albeit the quest once again starting in the middle of the book.) Riordan also does a good job not to make anything to sappy. There are a lot of emotional scenes in the book, the Sirens and Tyson’s leave taking being two of them, and Riordan writes them in such a way that makes them endearing but not overly cliche. It should also be noted that this is the first of Riordan’s famous cliffhangers–the twist at the end of the story is a great set up for the next book.
When we went to watch the movie my sister and I attempted to watch with open minds. My sister put it perfectly when we got home from watching the movie:
I feel like I’ve been hit in the face with a two-by-four. After it happened, I was shocked. Soon the shock faded away and all I was left with was pain.
Once again, we were handed a poor adaptation of a beloved book. Some people claimed that this was the better of the two movie adaptations.
No. No it wasn’t.
For one thing, The Lighting Thief (movie) was set up in such a way that it looked like a stand alone movie. And I would have been happy for it to be a stand alone movie, since it didn’t have any set up at all for a sequel.
But then they made this movie. Which is so poor because they tried to graft the original source material to a movie franchise that began by ignoring the source material in the first place. And even then, they still managed to stray from the source material. The best example of this is the portrayal of Annabeth, who went from this strange mix of Clarisse and Annabeth in the books to…well I’m not really sure who she is now, since she keeps asking Percy for help and advice, whereas neither of her (possible) previous inspirations were dependent or flat.
Unlike the books, the transfer of the Greek mythology was strained, especially the Mist in a perfume bottle. And I’m not even going to get into the fact that Luke crawled through Tartarus and Kronos has a corporeal form in this movie, since readers of the books know how difficult both tasks are.
Point in case: the movie should just go to Polyphemus’ Island. (Or CirceLand Amusement Park, whichever works.)
The Sea of Monsters is a great sequel to The Lightning Thief, keeping the witty voice, the Greek myths and the well developing characters. The treatment of the moral aspects of Greek mythology are essential to the overall arc, and I can’t wait to read the next book, which, if this book is any indication, promises to be just as good.
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“I prayed to Daddy for help. Soon the people at Meriwether found me. Met you. Biggest blessing ever. Sorry I said Poseidon was mean. He sent me a brother.”
― (Tyson) Rick Riordan, The Sea of Monsters