Redd Becker Book Review
The Lightening Thief is the first of Riordan’s Percy Jackson and the Olympian’s series. The stories mix Greek Gods with youths in the modern world. Although I would classify this book a middle grade adventure, high schoolers enjoy the series as well. As with many Rick Riordan books, the story moves fast with hardly a moment to reflect.
The Lightening Thief starts in New York City, then takes us on an adventure-filled ride across the country. Written in first person, Percy tells how he learned that he is a demigod, then shows us the consequences of his privileged position.
We call this type of book reader’s “candy” in our house, because it doesn’t have much depth, but is entertaining.
Rick Riordan Books
Riordan writes fast moving, action oriented stories that take the reader out of here and now—pure entertainment. He is a prolific writer and can be formulaic, but for the right young reader, he opens the door of imagination and entertainment. Like many of Riordan’s books, The Lightening Thief is easy to read and full of action.
Riordan uses mythology from European lore as a springboard for his stories. This provides a fun framework, although the references shouldn’t be interpreted as true to the myths, .
If your child enjoys reading The Lightening Thief, check out this list of Rick Riordan books.
For those interested in writing: I think of Rick Riordan stories as full of action and conflicts, so when researching various ways writers handle ‘fight scenes’ I pulled out his Percy Jackson and the Olympians series as a reference. The fight scenes I found were so much shallower than I remembered. For wonderfully colorful fight scenes check out Brian Jacques’ Redwall series and Tad William’s science fiction books.The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1) by Rick Riordan
Series: Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1
Published by Disney Hyperion Books on March 1st 2006
Genres: Fantasy, Middle Grade
Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can't seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse—Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy's mom finds out, she knows it's time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he'll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island), where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon a mystery unfolds and together with his friends—one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena—Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.