The Mark of Athena (The Heroes of Olympus, Book Three) by Rick Riordan

The demigods (children of the gods) from the Greek and Roman camps come together in the third book of this trilogy. There is a prophecy that 7 of them will go together to fight the Goddess Gaea who is about to awake and unleash the giants on Earth. Greeks and Romans don’t usually work well together but this is an emergency so really, what could go wrong?

You need to read the earlier books in the series for this to make any sense at all. I enjoyed it but I don’t really like reading series as they are published. I don’t remember small details from what I read previously and then I have to wait another year for the next one.

The Rapture of the Nerds: A tale of the singularity, posthumanity, and awkward social situations by Cory Doctorow

Humanity has evolved. The most evolved people left their bodies long ago and moved into a cosmic consciousness in space. Byproducts of this cloud mind sometimes make their way to Earth. Not all of the new technology this enables is safe so a technology jury is called to evaluate new inventions. Huw, a technology hater from Wales, has been called for jury duty.

I absolutely loved the first half of this book. The world was wonderful and imaginative. One character subscribed to the House of the Month Club so every month her house would morph into a new style. There were numerous references to other sci-fi like Dr. Who and Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. As much as I liked the details though, I was never really pulled into the plot. The second half drug because I wasn’t as interested in what happened up in space.

The Panther by Nelson DeMille

Police officer John Corey and his wife, FBI Agent Kate Mayfield killed a terrorist. Because of this they were put on Al Queda’s hit list. Now they are being used as bait by the CIA to bring another terrorist out of hiding because he has vowed to kill them.

This book was set in Yemen and dealt with the in and outs of a covert operation to kill an American born terrorist. It is told from the highly sarcastic and cynical point of view of John Corey. That makes it an entertaining read. He suspects that a secondary part of the operation is to kill some people who are considered CIA allies, including John and Kate. He just wants to get out of this alive. It is very detailed about how an operation like this would play out and gives insights into the problems of trying to infiltrate a tribal and corrupt society.