From Percy Jackson: Camp Half-Blood Confidential: Your Real Guide to the Demigod Training Camp

Book review by
Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media
From Percy Jackson: Camp Half-Blood Confidential: Your Real Guide to the Demigod Training Camp Book Poster Image
Slim diversion between Trials of Apollo books just for fans.

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Kids say

age 9+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Background knowledge of Greek gods and monsters is helpful in getting jokes about Zeus and Io and why the children of gods have various talents, such as that Hephaestus' kids are good at building. As a refresher, there's a 10-page glossary and a four-page who's who of the Camp Half-Blood campers. Many famous historical figures mentioned as demigods: Harriet Tubman, Amelia Earhart, Frank Lloyd Wright, Joan of Arc, and more.

Positive Messages

There's value in teamwork. It's great (especially for demigods) to find your peer group. If you're showboating, like Apollo, people may make jokes at your expense. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

Percy is the main host through this book, assuming readers are all demigods. He's the cool/sarcastic kid every kid wants to partner with at school orientation.

Violence

Violence mostly in memories of past adventures. Before Argus joins the camp as a security guard, he's "brained" with a rock but survives. Old campers come save new ones when hundreds of monsters attack the camp; no mention of deaths or injuries. In the camp's Combat Arena, "the hits are real, and so is the blood." Advisories to stay away from Peleus, the guardian dragon; the cursed corner of Bunker 9; and the Myrmekes' Lair (giant ants). A revised story about James Dean dying in a car crash.

Sex

Mentions of Zeus' infidelity.

Language
Consumerism

Campers engage in some "MacGyvering" and help write the Queen song "We Will Rock You." Porsche mentioned.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that From Percy Jackson: Camp Half-Blood Confidential: Your Real Guide to Demigod Training Camp is a slim illustrated companion to Rick Riordan's Trials of Apollo series. Readers well versed in Percy Jackson's world -- the Percy Jackson series, the Heroes of Olympus series, Percy Jackson's Greek Gods -- are the best equipped to get the fun and jokes here. There's a glossary in the back if you need a refresher. As this is a guide instead of a stand-alone story, most violence is in memories about past adventures. Before many-eyed Argus joins the camp as a security guard, he's "brained" with a rock but survives. Old campers come to save new ones when hundreds of monsters attack the camp, with no mention of deaths or injuries. In the camp's Combat Arena, "the hits are real, and so is the blood." New campers are warned to stay away from Peleus, the guardian dragon; the cursed corner of Bunker 9; and the Myrmekes' Lair (because of giant ants).

User Reviews

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Teen, 13 years old Written bybooksandfood August 5, 2017

Great book

I think this book is great. Its sort of like a behind the scenes of the lives of the demigods. I recommend it for all Percy Jackson fans!
Kid, 9 years old March 9, 2018

What's the story?

In PERCY JACKSON: CAMP HALF-BLOOD CONFIDENTIAL: YOUR REAL GUIDE TO THE DEMIGOD TRAINING CAMP, you can find out how the camp came into being and what the cabins, dining pavilion, and other living spaces are like; visit the magical landmarks; find out why lava flows down the climbing wall and what the curse in Bunker 9 is; and visit the wild places around camp, such as the geysers and the strawberry fields. For kicks, Percy includes snippets of Apollo's original ham-it-up orientation video, complete with variety acts, canned laughter, bad poetry, and Percy's sardonic take on it all.

Is it any good?

It doesn't take much to make a Rick Riordan book a big seller, as this slim but entertaining-for-fans volume proves. Pick it up for car trips when it's hard to concentrate on a real story, but don't have high expectations. Readers of the Trials of Apollo series that this volume complements have usually already read the other Percy Jackson series -- plural -- and know all about what's at camp, who they wish their godly parent was, and why they'd love to go there. The laughs at Apollo's showboating are fun, but the fun is over quickly.

For much meatier reads -- that are admittedly way too big for car trips -- try Riordan's excellent and well-researched Percy Jackson's Greek Gods and Percy Jackson's Greek Heroes.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the appeal of Camp Half-Blood Confidential. Did you learn anything new about the camp? Is it fun to imagine you're headed there for the summer?

  • Many famous people are mentioned as former campers. What do you know about James Dean? Joan of Arc? Napoleon? Frank Lloyd Wright?

  • Does this book make you look forward to more Trials of Apollo? The first edition contains a preview of The Dark Prophecy. Does that draw you in further?

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