Well holy CARP! That chapter sure ended with a bang, didn’t it? (Yeah, I made a pun. Possibly two. I make no apology.) It’s time for the next part of Michael Reads Percy Jackson: The Sea of Monsters…
Clarisse Blows Up Everything
So this chapter starts at a nice leisurely pace, catching us up on how Clarisse came to be there and what might be going on from her perspective. It gives us an update on Operation Grover-Sew. …And then it blasts us smack between Scylla and Charybdis to detonate the chapter in an explosion of blazing peril as plans backfire, hopes combust, and a mushroom cloud of puns about blowing stuff up bursts out of yours truly.
In short, a dynamite chapter. (Okay, I’ll stop now.)
I’m sorry to say that Clarisse demolished the credit she’d earned with me for her entrance at the end of the last chapter. It’s a shame that her father’s lack of wisdom is genetic. Then again, how much is genetics and how much is just from poor advice? For instance, she refuses to accept the Oracle’s apparent assertion that she’s got no chance to complete the quest without Percy. Yet did she form that opinion due to her own ego, or did Ares reject the prophecy and demand for his own pride that she do it alone?
It surprised me to hear that no one from Clarisse’s cabin wanted to join her, but then I realized that it’s a quest rather than a war, and that’s probably of less interest to Ares’s teenage kids. Still, it would mean they probably got to fight things, but it’s a good reminder that bravery and warmongering don’t always go hand in hand.
And then, BLAM! We’re at the entrance to the Sea of Monsters (which does seem to have geographically moved, at least in a metaphysical sense, given that you can’t sail around the traditional entrances and hope to get inside). Clarisse tries to blow up Charybdis, it goes terribly wrong, and all hell breaks loose. I’m sure Tyson and Annabeth survived–probably Clarisse as well, but I’m less certain about her–but I’ve no idea quite how they’re getting out of that. It’ll be interesting to see.
But I’m not done here yet. When Tyson was about to go down and fix the engine–since he’s a) immune to fire, b) really good with fixing things, and c) if he didn’t they were all going to die–Annabeth was on board with that plan while Percy was trying to stop him because it was too dangerous, it occurred to me that we might be looking at an id-ego-superego dynamic here, with Percy, Tyson, and Annabeth playing those parts, respectively. It’s just a hypothesis at this point, but I’ll be keeping my eye on it.
It also may be complete coincidence. I may be trying to hard to twist things to suit this concept. We’ll see.
- Charybdis has braces? Which lucky orthodontist pulled THAT duty?
My favorite line from this chapter is chosen for amusing imagery:
“As we got closer to the monsters, the sound of Charybdis got louder and louder— a horrible wet roar like the galaxy’s biggest toilet being flushed.”
Or I guess that’d be soundery. Audioery? Auralery? There’s a word for this, probably. (Me guud writer-guy.)
Let me know in the comments what you think–in non-spoiler fashion, of course–about my id-ego-superego observation, or if you think Clarrise would be a little wiser without dad breathing down her neck!
I can’t wait to see what’s next…
Maybe Apollo or Aesclepius did the dental work, since they’re health deities. That or a Titan had to do it as a punishment from Zeus.
Clarisse…no, she really isn’t wise at all, but she does have good qualities as well, especially as the series goes on. Riordan does a good job of giving characters different strengths and weaknesses so that they need each other, I think.
Michael G. Munz says
Ooh, good point! If I were Apollo, I’d delegate that to Aesclepius. (Except I guess I made a big point in Zeus Is Dead about Apollo’s problems all stem from NOT being able to delegate…)
And that’s a good point about Riordan balancing characters’ strengths and weaknesses. That’s also a good lesson for us author-types.
Accidental Librarian (@CrystalDawn0603) says
I’m sure the Germans have a word for it.
Michael G. Munz says
Yes. We Germans are a clever lot…