Percy Jackson and The French-Canadians’ Revenge

26 Nov

So, I read a whole bunch of stuff I theoretically shouldn’t be interested in. Like Percy Jackson. That’s aimed at kids in middle school. There’re five books in that series and now there’s a new series that’s starting or something… And I’ve read 1, 2, 4 and the second half of 5. And then I read The Lost Hero, which is the first one in the new series.

Although it follows the same basic outline (people meet, people find out they’re half-god, people go on a theoretically insane quest and somehow survive to come back and find out ‘hey! you’re not really done because there’s a bigger issue you”ll face in the vague but near future!’) I liked The Lost Hero a lot more. I mean, being in Percy’s head was funny but now there’s three people (all older than he was/closer to my age, too) that we get to see and (gasp!) they all have issues!

This is actually a good thing. Because it’s interesting.

I’m still mad that Beckendorf and Silena are dead, but Piper is a nice look into the Aphrodite cabin, and Leo living up to Beckendorf’s legacy is a nice shout-out to the fact that he WAS EPIC.

And Jason’s kind of interesting. (SPOILER!) I never really bonded with Thalia (that’s all in book 3, I think…) but as a kick-ass female, she’s pretty cool… And actually relatable when we figure out she has a lost brother-who’s-really-kind-of-a-half-brother-or-something-but-not-quite. (/SPOILER)

The ending was actually good too. Because along with the whole the-great-evil-isn’t-really-vanquished-and-you’ll-fight-it-again-soon thing, there’s the idea that we know where Percy went missing TO and the next book will probably be about him. But hopefully it won’t be COMPLETELY about his parallel journey to Jason’s in this book, because that would be boring.

But I digress. I’m actually writing this to complain. Piper and the northern wind god speak French at some point in the book. And can I just say:

FAIL.

FRENCH FAIL.

I mean, it was straight up BAD, even for Canadian French (they’re in Canada at this point), which can break the grammar rules a bit/a lot. The problem here is that is was clearly run straight through an online translator. And, as every language teacher in the world will tell you, that’s LAZY AND TERRIBLE. And they have a point, because translators don’t get syntax. As proved by this book.

Alright, I’m done.

I do want to salute Canadian French for being awesome in genera,l though. I have a Cheerios box from Canada that somehow made it’s way to Camp Hantesa’s Horse Barn Breakfast Buffet (aka five-minute cereal break), that has all the games and stuff in French. It makes me giggle, because apparently the French word for pirate is pirate.

But the point being: EDITORS. GET A DAMN HUMAN TO TRANSLATE. BECAUSE EVEN THOUGH YOU GET ALL THE WORDS AND SPELLINGS RIGHT, IT’S STILL NOT RIGHT. (But please, continue putting French in books. Or any other language. It reminds us there is more to the world than English)

Alright. I might be wrong, I don’t know much about Canadian French other than that they do crazy grammar things (I have a friend that speaks Canadian French but all she’ll tell me is that because she learned it from her dad in English-speaking Minnesota, her grammar’s really bad) and print their cereal boxes in a hodge-podge of both languages.

But whatever.

Kristine, out.

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