The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
Post number forty-two is for Rick Riordan’s The Lightning Thief, which is a book I’ve read before (and absolutely loved) and re-read because it was on the required reading list for my Fantasy Lit course. I most recently read The Lost Hero, which is a continuation of the Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (the new series is called The Heroes of Olympus, just fyi), but it had been a long time since I’d read the actual Percy Jackson books, so it was nice to revisit an old favorite. This is one of my favorite series of books, for sure.
Rather than really go into detail about the book – although there will be a spoiler mentioned about the end of the book – I just want to write down some of my favorite bits, so will do that under the following spoiler space.
Quick summary in case you don’t know anything about this book: Percy Jackson has just realized that he’s a demigod – half-human, half-Greek God/Goddess – and that his father is Poseidon, God of the Sea. He’s sent on a quest to retrieve Zeus’ Master Bolt, which has been stolen (and Percy’s been accused of stealing it), from the Underworld, as Hades is the main suspect because it’s the opinion of everyone that he would love to be the cause of a war between Zeus and Poseidon, in order to expand his kingdom. Percy meets a daughter of Athena – Annabeth – who goes on the quest with him, as well as Grover, your friendly neighborhood satyr. Along the way there are many many plot twists and turns, Gods acting completely ridiculous, and a lot of betrayal. But it all turns into a fabulous book that’s hard to put down that I really really loved to pieces.
Percy Jackson has to be one of my favorite narrators of all time. He’s hysterically funny, very sarcastic, and has such a quick wit and humor about him that he’s really a joy to read. I love his interactions with Annabeth (she calls him “Seaweed Brain”, which is a running trend throughout the books), the fact that he calls Hades “Uncle” (but he isn’t daring enough to do so to Zeus, or at least not yet), and I especially love the conversation with Poseidon at the end (pg. 345):
…”As … as you wish, Father.”
A faint smile played on his lips. “Obedience does not come naturally to you, does it?”
“No … sir.”
“I must take some blame for that, I suppose. The sea does not like to be restrained.”
And also the end of the conversation, when Percy misunderstands what Poseidon means when he says he made a mistake, and was sorry he [Percy] was born (pg. 346):
There was a different light in his eyes, a fiery kind of pride. “You did well, Perseus. Do not misunderstand me. Whatever else you do, know that you are mine. You are a true son of the Sea God.”
In fact, the conversations – all of them, throughout the series – between Percy and Poseidon are my favorite bits, especially in the fourth book, when Poseidon tells Percy that he is his favorite son. <3
I also love that Percy’s mom turns her husband into a statue and sells it to an art gallery. That’s too fantastic for words.
If there’s anyone out there that hasn’t yet read this series, you are seriously missing out. Definitely give them a read.