The Lightning Thief

Percy Jackson and The Olympians Book 1: The Lightning Thief
By Rick Riordan

When I was in college, I was required to take certain courses that were not included in my major (I majored in English).  I tended to go with the easy stuff; art, geography, music appreciation, etc.  One such class was mythology.  I went into it expecting something kind of boring.  I wasn’t a fool, we read Edith Wharton’s mythology in high school, and I was bored stuff.  I wasn’t expecting much better from the college course.

Boy, was I in for a surprise.  I breezed through with an A and a new appreciate for Greek, Roman and Norse gods.  The battles!  The lust!  The murder, love, betrayal, torture, death!!  Mythology had it all!  And then some!

So, imagine my delight, when I picked up with little gem. Slightly reminiscent of Harry Potter; our hero, Percy Jackson, has been “special” all his life without knowing why.  Always causing problems, labeled a troubled youth and sent away to boarding school, Percy is coming into his 12th year and he finally discovers just why he is special.  His father was a god.  Now, caught between bickering gods and fleeing monsters, Percy must recover something very special, and get to know himself and his father along the way.  Not to mention meeting quite a few gods and goddesses who would like to send him on a one way trip to Hades. 

Percy was, in my mind, a great, true character.  He acted just like a 12 year old.  Obnoxious.  Confused.  A little geeky.  Adored his mother.  Hated his stepdad.  Intensely loyal to his friends.  And, unlike another book I read of a similar subject that I will not mention here because I have to review it for Estella, the gods and goddesses acted exactly in the way I expected them too.  Petty, self-absorbed, violent.  The writing was tight, fast-paced and exciting.  It all came together for a very enjoyable read.  I can’t wait to get the next in this series.

7 thoughts on “The Lightning Thief

  1. I saw this recently and was wondering about it. Great review. Isn't mythology wonderful? I love books that have mythological themes and/or underpinnings. When written well they are simply some of the best books one could read.

  2. Carl, mythology is endlessly fascinating. I think I'd like to find a book that has more indepth commentary on myths, their origins, and such. I love books with those themes as well and I agree, they are some of the best written books one could read.

    Hope you enjoy it Nancy!

  3. I have this book checked out and waiting to be read. I've been hearing a lot of buzz on it since it was a Today Show kids pick…thanks for the review!

  4. This sounds really fun, especially as a way to introduce young readers to mythology without beating Bullfinch's over their heads! Thanks for the review 🙂

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