The Lost Hero is the first book in The Heroes of Olympus series. I loved the characters in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, so I was leery of a new set of characters. I knew from the first sentence that I would love these characters just as much as Percy, Annabeth and Grover - "Even before he got electrocuted, Jason was having a rotten day."
The story alternates between three characters, which is confusing at first. I would just get into this character's story and then it would switch the point-of-view. It took a while, but once I got to know the character's better, I was able to keep them straight. I liked getting to know the perspectives of the three characters. I did miss the funny chapter titles that Rick Riordan used in the first series though - like "I Accidentally Vaporized my Pre-Algebra Teacher."
I loved the new monsters/bad guys. It was fun to see how King Midas would survive in the modern world. Of course, with all of our current greed, he fit right in. I also loved Medea and her department store of gently used items of dead demigods. I was alternately disgusted, sympathetic, and intrigued by her character. I also liked Aeolus - the Lord of the Winds. It turns out that the weather is controlled by the God's whims and their needs to reward or punish mortals. Aeolus runs a weather channel that updates every 12 minutes and he is literally going insane from updating the weather as the Gods change their minds about the weather patterns. "We'll have a low-pressure system moving over Florida today, so expect milder temperatures since Demeter wishes to spare the citrus farmers..." He tapped his earpiece. "Sorry, folks! Poseidon is angry with Miami today, so it looks like that Florida freeze is back on! Sorry, Demeter. Over in the midwest, I'm not sure what St. Louis did to offend Zeus, but you can expect winter storms!"
It is a long book, but the action, humor, and well-developed characters make it a fun read. I recommend it to all kids, teens, and adults that love fantasy or Greek/Roman mythology. One of the best books Rick Riordan has written so far.