The Lightening Thief
by Rick Riordan
I’m going to tell you my rating right off the bat – 5 PAWS!
This is my second reading of the book. The first time was about 4 years ago and I’ve forgotten a lot of it, so really it is like my first reading.
A brief synopsis – 12-year old boy who has been in and out of schools because of being branded a trouble-maker, and in fact, trouble follows him where ever he goes. He lives with his mom and his step-dad who is awful. Over time he discovers he is actually a ‘half-blood’ or a demi-god – the son of a human mother and a god (as in Greek god) father. It is no spoiler alert to say he finds he is the son of Poseidon, god of the seas. Turns out someone has stolen the lightening bolt of Zeus and while Percy is the main suspect, he goes on a quest with friend /protector Grover, a satyr and new friend Annabeth, daughter of Athena. They cross the country to get to LA where Hades has set up his lair to 1. get Percy’s mom back and 2. get the lightening bolt back. Along the way they meet up with a strange cast of characters.
*Percy Jackson, real name, Perseus Jackson, son of Poseidon, demi-god
*Grover, satyr, protector of Percy, really wants his searchers licence so he can fond the missing god Pan
*Annabeth, fellow half-blood, daughter of Athena, goddess of wisdom
*Poseidon, god of the oceans, Percy’s father
*Chiron, who Percy first knows as a teacher named Mr. Brunner and who is in a wheelchair and later finds out he is actually a centaur
*Mr. D, he runs Camp Half-Blood and is really the god Dionysus
*Luke, fellow camper, son of messenger god Hermes
*Minotaur, bull head, human body, all crazy
*Aunty Em, aka Medusa, immortal who was once beautiful and then was turned into a horror by Athena – and with just a look she can turn a person to stone
*Echidna, the Mother of Monsters who first shows up as a fat lady with a chihuahua. Her chihuahua turns into a Chimera – which is kind of what that creature my mom brought home – LadyBird – she turns into a monster if I go anywhere near her when she’s eating.
*Ares, god of War, who shows up as a biker
*Crusty, the immortal Procrustes, who specializes in tortorous water beds
*Charon, guardian of the gates of hell, carries dead folks over the River Styx and loves expensive Italian suits
*Hades, third of the sons of Kronos (a Titan), Zeus and Poseidon being the other two; god of the Underworld
I really don’t want to say too much about what happens because I hate to give up the good parts. Suffice it to say READ THE BOOK and ignore the movie. The movie is yuk. It is amazing how completely unlike the book it is. The only thing that is the same is most of the characters. So forget the movie.
I love this book because Percy Jackson is a wonderful character, with an amazing story. I really like Rick Riordan’s writing – he is descriptive without overdoing it; the story moves along at a good pace and the twists and turns are not so convoluted that you can’t figure out what’s going on. And I really like what happens to Percy’s stepfather in the end!
There are 4 more books in this series and then 5 books in the Heroes of Olympus. I’m going to enjoy the next couple of months living in Percy Jackson’s world!
Classic views of some of the characters:
From left to right, Zeus, Poseidon, Hades
Medusa, Chiron, satyr
Minotaur, Echidna, Chimera
The Three Furies, Charon