When I was reading The Hidden Oracle I realized something I’m not sure how to put it into words, it’s so easy to explain it in spanish but I have a hard time explaining in english, but I’m gonna try my best.
Trials of Apollo is a complete new saga, it’s different than Heroes of Olympus because that saga was more connected to PJO. But TOA? It’s a new beginning, it’s for a new generation of kids, it’s the start of another era, Percy and his friends, the original campers, they are no longer at camp, it’s the time of a new generation of campers, inside the book and outside the book.
Reading TOA is a bittersweet experience and I can say the reason of that is all the small explanations Riordan had to add to the books, we know who is Paul, we know Tyson is a cyclops and Percy’s brother and we definitely know who Annabeth is, but the new readers? The ones whose first touch to the Riordan world is this book? They have no idea of any of that. They are the new campers, they are the ones who are gonna grow with Meg and Lester and Kayla and Austin and the new batch of campers the same way we did with Percy and Annabeth and Clarisse and Silena and the others.
Having Percy at the start and the end of this book is Riordan’s way of Percy passing the torch to Lester. This is not his story anymore, he has grown up, he is off to college, his era of being a hero is done. Percy is now on his way to becoming a legend and it’s Lester and Meg’s turn to be the heroes. Sure, Percy is not going to disappear off the saga, it’s Riordan we are talking about and Percy is his third son, but his role is the same role Chiron had on the PJO saga Percy is the mentor now, no longer the kid who needed help. And for me, a girl who sees Percy as my hero, Percy who helped me when I needed someone the most? Is absolutely heartbreaking but at the same time I can’t help but feel happy for all the new kids who are gonna have Lester as his Hero. Because this is just not a new saga, this is a new saga filled with all types of representation to little kids who are gonna read this and see that some campers have two dads, maybe just like them, or look! Apollo likes boys and girls! just like me! All the representation this book has and this saga is going to have just makes my heart so incredibly full and warm.
And this is why reading Trials of Apollo is so bittersweet to me.