Thursday, March 18, 2021

Book Review: The Tower of Nero (The Trials of Apollo, #5) by Rick Riordan

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BOOK review
Started on: 26 February 2021
Finished on: 10 March 2021
 
 
Title: The Tower of Nero (The Trials of Apollo, #5)
Author: Rick Riordan
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Pages: 410 pages / 528 pages (e-book)
Year of Publication: 2020
Price: Rp 190,000 (https://www.periplus.com/)

Rating: 5/5
*for those who haven't read the first book, this review may contain spoiler.
Review for The Tyrant's Tomb (The Trials of Apollo, #4) by Rick Riordan here.
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"The only thing more unsettling than not understanding a prophecy was beginning to understand it."
After the battle for Camp Jupiter is over, it is now time for Apollo to face the final trial. Even though they have won that battle, the war is far from being over. Apollo and Meg will now have to face the last emperor, the terrifying Nero, and destroy him once and for all. Only then Apollo will be able to confront his old nemesis, Python, and restore the Oracles. However, to be able to defeat his enemies, Apollo might have to sacrifice his godhood. On the other hand, Meg is forced to deal with her troubled past when she comes face to face with her evil stepfather, Nero. Will they be able to come through?
"But if a hero isn't ready to lose everything for a greater cause, is that person really a hero?"
"This was what all my trials had led to—this choice. This was why Python had been laughing at me for months in my dreams. Nero had made the cost of his destruction giving up the one thing I wanted most. To destroy him, I'd have to forfeit my own godhood forever."
I have officially finished reading The Trials of Apollo series!! It is a bittersweet feeling indeed. On one hand, I'm happy because I finally get to see the ending that I've been looking forward to; but on the other, I'm sad because it means I have to say goodbye to Apollo and all the demigods from Camp Half-Blood and Camp Jupiter 😢. In this final book, Apollo and Meg will be accompanied by Will Solace, Nico di Angelo, and Rachel Elizabeth Dare on their adventure. Just like the previous books, their demigod companions have the skills to assist Apollo in completing his quest. I personally find Nico's skills the most impressive, because he's able to shadow travel (which is equal to teleporting) and he can control the dead too! Will Solace is also good to have around because of his ability to heal well (since he's one of Apollo's sons). Rachel is the Oracle of Delphi, so she is able to see fragments of the future—which comes in handy during certain occasions.
"If my trials as a mortal had done anything, they had shown me how many times I'd abandoned, forgotten, and failed my Oracles over the centuries... I'd neglected the basic truth that they did not serve me; I was supposed to serve them."
Right from the start of this book, things already got intense when Apollo and Meg are surrounded by a bunch of Germani and also the Gaul, Luguselwa, who were sent by Nero to capture them. Apparently, Meg and Lu have known each other for long and they are incredibly fond of each other. But throughout this book, Apollo is constantly on edge because he's afraid that at some point Lu will end up betraying them. Due to his suspicion towards Lu, I ended up being doubtful as well and am constantly nervous to see what Lu is going to do next. But after I finished reading this book, Lu became one of my favorite characters from this book. Not going to spoil much of what happened, but I'll just say that I admire her strong mentality and she doesn't give up easily. I definitely did not expect her to play such a huge role in helping Apollo to complete his quest 😊.
 
Another unexpected 'hero' in this book would be The Arrow of Dodona. Again, I won't spoil what exactly happened—especially because the scene is towards the ending of this book, but I can't not write this in my review because it's one of my favorite scenes 🤣. All these time, I've always underestimated The Arrow of Dodona because it speaks in weird Shakespearean language and it always gives vague answers to Apollo's questions. But as we're nearing the end, we know why The Arrow of Dodona always refused to be used as a weapon throughout the whole series. I think from the very beginning, The Arrow of Dodona already knows that it has a greater purpose that it needs to do; and it's willing to lose its' life to accomplish that purpose 👏.
"But I had learned plenty of humility. So much humility that now, facing my old nemesis, I was racked with self-doubt... And yet, along with humility, I'd learned something else: getting humiliated is only the beginning, not the end. Sometimes you need a second shot, and a third, and a fourth."
There are so many more memorable scenes from this book, such as: the moment when Meg finally breaks free from Nero's manipulation, the demigods from Camp Half-Blood storming the Tower of Nero, Apollo's bursts of godly power, and of course the final battle between Apollo and Python. This book managed to keep me on the edge of my seat almost the whole time, because I'm constantly afraid that someone else will end up dying again. But I'm glad Rick Riordan wrapped up this whole series really well and gave us all a very heartwarming ending. Hopefully I don't spoil too much when I say that Apollo managed to regain his godhood and went back to Olympus. It's so sweet of him to visit all the demigods who've been by his side throughout his quests. The sweetest farewell is of course with Meg, who have been with him from the very beginning. I almost cried when Meg asked Apollo for a unicorn and then Apollo just snapped his fingers to will that unicorn into existence. It's a contrast comparison to his mortal form in which Apollo was very dependent on demigods and lacking in strength. It's also good to know that even though Apollo has officially become a god again, he cherish his adventure as a mortal because it has certainly taught him a lot of things and changed his character.
 
Reading books written by Rick Riordan is always a good time for me, regardless of how old I am. I find myself immersed in the world of demigods and constantly entertained by his sense of humor. I am most definitely looking forward to his future works! I heard he will be publishing a new standalone book later this year, so I'm really excited for that! 😆 At this point, I think I'll want to read anything that Rick Riordan writes 😉.
"Perhaps that was what Styx had been trying to teach me: It wasn't about how loudly you swore your oath, or what sacred words you used. It was about whether or not you meant it. And whether your promise was worth making."
"You'll come back?" she asked.
"Always," I promised. "The sun always comes back."
by.stefaniesugia♥ .
 

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