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Riordan-verse, Trials of Apollo guesses - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Riordan-verse, Trials of Apollo guesses
I admit, one of the reasons I'm slow on this (other than my re-discovered screw-up) is that I'm actually having a hard time getting through a Riordan book. (I know, right?) It's the new Magnus Chase, The Hammer of Thor. I just literally don't care about it at all. I'm pretty much reading because Percy's supposed to show up at the end. It's essentially the same plot as Sea of Monsters (one of the hero's friends is about to be forced into a marriage and we have to race the clock against it), only without the plot part of getting there to save him (her, in this case). Sea of Monsters without the Sea of Monsters.

Maybe I'm just missing references to some epic Norse saga because I've never been as fond of Norse mythology as I am of classical, but I can't seem to engage in the plot at all. My bad.

Oh, well.

I decided to refocus my attention on the PJO-verse of it all, and think about what little things in the latter HoO books and of course The Hidden Oracle might point toward Trials of Apollo clues.

  • Reyna was the biggest dropped storyline in HoO. She pretty much got started with a story in Blood, but that was at the very end, and it didn't resolve, so I think she will pretty well have to figure. Given that the last question she was asking was about what Aphrodite said about no half-blood healing her heart, and there was no resolution, I assume that was building up to the Apollo storyline. He is not, after all, a half-blood, and is a healer. Whether that means a romance or not isn't clear. She thinks it is, but that seems like a very odd way to word it. (I'd be cool with it, though.)
  • The sword of the pirate Cofresí. Reyna used it to dispatch her father's ghost, but it didn't re-enter the story. Still out there somewhere? One of the oracles is described as being in deep blue water. Sounds Caribbean to me. Puerto Rican adventure on the way? Is there a blue hole around Puerto Rico? Amazons! Reyna! Possible swords?
  • Which seems like a more likely heart-wound to be healed. Not getting a chance to make it work with her crush was hardly the biggest problem Reyna had, after all.
  • Ella's another dropped point, almost certainly saved to play out here. She memorized the Sibylline books, and the Sibyl of Cumae is one of the Oracles on Apollo's shopping list.
  • The bronze fire eater
    Was forced death and madness to swallow

    Apollo seems to think he's going to be forced to swallow death and madness, but it seems like Festus will, honestly. Dionysus represents madness. Will Dionysus and Hades have something to do with this?
  • Also, where are the rest of the gods? In THO, Chiron mentioned that he expected Mr. D to come back after the war, but he never did. Apollo can't remember what happened on Olympus before he was cast out. Iris messages aren't going anywhere. Artemis hasn't attempted to help Apollo (though we saw in The Titan's Curse that he will defy Olympian rules to help her). The only god we saw in THO was the titan Rhea. Which was the book's funniest scene. Is something going on to block them? That would be a good place to bring in Jason, who's supposed to be building their shrines and temples.
  • Obviously, Meg has to come back and do something to help destroy the Triumvirate.
  • With the big bads being Roman emperors, what's going on at Camp Jupiter? And obviously, the question of which two emperors are the other members is relevant. Diocletian seems like a good bet, since he's already been established (and how to make Reyna and Jason feel disillusioned). Apollo takes pride in Octavian Augustus as a descendant, so maybe...? I don't know my Roman emperors all that well. I should look into it.
  • They've started to kind of approach the subject of the Christianization of Rome. I'm not sure that would fit into the mythverse (as from the start, they've separated the gods of Olympus/Asgard/etc from the question of the monotheistic religions' God, and Samirah al-Abbas in the Magnus Chase books explicitly separates the two), but it's a possibility that they'll interact more. (I weirdly loved the scene in Blood where Hades dressed as a monk in Evora.)
  • Nico is too much of a fan favorite to be left alone, so I imagine he'll be given a job of some kind. While the ghost-ifying of Bryce Lawrence come back to, well, haunt him? He turned a living person into a ghost. That's a pretty big thing to just be left out there.
  • Apollo's relationship with his children is definitely the strongest part of THO. I think he'll most likely end up fighting at Will's side in the final battle. Will's healing skills will play a pivotal role. Maybe keeping him alive long enough to regain his godhood after a sacrifice?
  • Now that we have a god as a main character, maybe we'll learn more about the actual mechanics of godhood. Piper thinks once that it's strange for Aphrodite to have so many children the exact same age, but the question isn't revisited. I wonder if we'll learn exactly how much free will the gods do or don't have in these relationships with mortals. Dionysus implied in TLO that their spirits show up whenever they're powerfully summoned, and both Marie Levesque and Beryl Grace are spoken of as having summoned the gods, not being pursued by them. Do they even have a choice at all? Apollo brings it up again as a repeated argument -- in the silly business of how he couldn't avoid wearing a powdered wig in the 1700s -- about how much mortals impose themselves on the gods. It's brought up many times that there are cases where the gods simply are prohibited from acting. Are there also cases where they are made to act? How much of the power actually comes from the mortal parent? Are the children so different from one another because the parents invoked the gods for different reasons? Is there a difference between something like Sally's relationship with Poseidon (where they seem to care about each other like normal exes) and Apollo's little "Oh, yeah, his mom was a folk singer" things? This is just an interesting question to me, and it would certainly change the dynamic of, "Jeez, the Olympians are crap parents" to more like, "Are they even always particularly aware of what they've been invoked for?" Their kids are all ADHD... maybe it's because the gods are literally in so many places at once that they literally have their consciousness split in too many directions to consciously follow all of them.
  • American aspect. We saw that the gods picked up a whole new aspect during their time in Rome, so much so that they were their own enemies. Did they pick up British aspects when they were in the British empire? Is the rejoining of the Greek and Roman aspects leading to a new, American aspect?

Guess that's it for now.
6 comments or Leave a comment
shiiki From: shiiki Date: October 11th, 2016 07:29 am (UTC) (Link)
I feel the same way about Gods of Asgard--I loved the Greek universe (well, I suppose RR is kind of linking it all together through Annabeth, although I can't quite figure out how the logistics of it works) but the Norse was just a bit meh. I think a large part of the problem might be that I just couldn't care much for Magnus, and he's the narrator. I like the other characters well enough, there's definitely a fine supporting cast in Sam, Blitz and Hearth, and now Alex, too, but I guess when the narrating voice doesn't grab me, that's where it falls apart.

Though I must say Hammer of Thor was more enjoyable for me than Sword of Summer. After reading the latter I found I'd reached the end with absolutely no clue as to what had just happened. A day later I couldn't recall any of the plot points.

Like you, I'm definitely more interested in the next Trials of Apollo book!

I've heard of possible Reyna/Apollo speculation before, and while I like it in terms of its fit with what Aphrodite says, the one problem I have with this idea is that personality-wise, Reyna just doesn't seem like a match for Apollo. Not even in an 'opposites-attract' way. But as you mentioned, healing the heart doesn't necessary have to mean romance.

I agree with you about Ella possibly playing a larger role, since Apollo is off in search of the Oracles. (Does this mean we'll see Tyson again, too? :D) I definitely think that there will be time spent at New Rome in the next book.

I've been trying to square what we saw at the end of Hammer with what might be going on in the Greek world, and the timeline completely boggles me. Annabeth mentions graduating from college, and I'm like, wait, they've barely gone.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 11th, 2016 01:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think Annabeth was talking about graduating high school (she's just wearing the UNR tee shirt the same way any senior wears the stuff of the college she means to attend, I think). She talks about the same things Percy does -- that he needs to get through his standardized tests before he can get to college.

I don't even like the supporting cast of GoA. Blitz, sort of, and Sam is kind of interesting, but Hearth just annoys me with the angst, and Alex is pretty angsty, too. (I'm not fond of angst. Even Nico was starting to bug me by the end with everyone talking about how no one had ever known deep pain like his. What saved him was that he wasn't saying it, and seemed to stay focused on what he was doing. Plus, he had the brain to accept Will kicking him in the ass and telling him to get out of his little dark cloud.)
From: (Anonymous) Date: October 16th, 2016 05:14 am (UTC) (Link)
Would the Blue Hole in Belize be a possibility in that sphere?

For the emperors, possibly one from each of the major periods.
So someone like Augustus from Julio-Claudian Dynasty at the start.
At least one of the Five Good Emperors (Marcus Aurelius, Antonius Pius, Hadrian, Trajan, Nerva).
An obscure figure from the mess that typified the Barracks Emperors.
And then pre-Constantine late Rome such as Diocletian.
Or maybe they are all obscure.

I'm extremely curious how the subject of extant religions would be tackled by Riordan.
Abrahamic faith and structure is obvious, but also the Vedic ones as well, which pop culture tends to muddle even worse than they do the classical stuff (not to mention not addressing the weird element of Hinduism simultaneously being monotheistic and polytheistic; depending on how you view the concept).

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 16th, 2016 07:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Belize is possible (certainly the most famous blue hole), but I'm wondering if we'll re-visit Reyna's home in Puerto Rico, since there was a lot of unfinished business there. (In fact, the hunters of Artemis were hanging around with the Amazons down there, so it might be a good opportunity to catch up with Artemis as well.)

I really need to bone up on my Roman emperors, possibly separate from my Jewish history classes, where "Hadrianic persecutions" tends to come up before "Five Good Emperors" ;p

There's always a danger, when dealing with large extant religions, of being SUPER offensive. Riordan has overtly religious characters in Magnus Chase (Samirah, her family, and her fiance are all devout Muslims), but not with the metaphysical and theological content. In the first book, Chiron explicitly said that we wouldn't be dealing with big-G God. (I can see two traps there. Either he turns big-G God into one of his mythverse characters -- obviously taking a stand there -- or big-G God turns out to genuinely be transcendent, which is a different kind of definite stand on the subject. Either one risks alienating readers.)
From: (Anonymous) Date: October 16th, 2016 08:03 am (UTC) (Link)


I think the healing the heart thing referred to the trauma around her past; the abuse she faced as a child, and killing her father. One of the big topics I think this series will address is parent-on-child physical violence and its psychological ramifications, with Meg being abused and manipulated by the Beast, Apollo being kicked out of Olympus by Zeus, and through Reyna possibly.

In Greek mythology it's Apollo's role to cleanse the murderer of murder, particularly in cases of inter-familal murder as well. So this might be what Aphrodite was hinting at. A romance between them sounds strange but he did love women like Daphne, Cyrene and "Libyan Queens of Old" it's not a stretch to assume they were independent and strong willed.

I hope Riordan explores the mechanics of mythology as well. I thought there was build up to them being the product of a collective human thought but who knows if it will go that far.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: October 16th, 2016 07:03 pm (UTC) (Link)


it's Apollo's role to cleanse the murderer of murder,
Oo, I'd forgotten that (and I'm willing to bet that Riordan hasn't)... that lends credence to a theory about Reyna.

While I can totally see Apollo being attracted to Reyna -- he seems to be attracted to everything that moves -- I'm not sure it would be reciprocal, unless he has some serious character growth. And maybe, he'll have the memory of Daphne to remind him not to push it.
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