Throwback Thursday Review: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

The Throwback Thursday review is where I take a book I recently reread and review it with new eyes. It could be a book I’m reading for the second, third, fourth or millionth time. Some books haven’t been read in years so its fun to throwback and see if my opinion has changed!

After crossing off the bucket list item of FINALLY meeting the fantastic Rick Riordan last month, I got the sudden urge to reread some Percy Jackson. It is one of the best series and its been awhile since I’ve read this first book and now, of course, I want to continue reading the rest of the series…

Please keep in mind that Throwback Thursday reviews are based on reread books. They most likely will contain spoilers as the books have already been released for some time. This is your only warning if you want to avoid spoilers for these books. 

GENRE: 

Middle Grade, Fantasy

PAGES:

375 pages

PART OF A SERIES?:

1st novel in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series

RELEASE DATE: 

March 1st 2006

YOU CAN FIND THE BOOK AT YOUR LOCAL BOOKSTORE OR THE FOLLOWING LINKS:

GoodReads

IndieBound

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Book Depository

iBooks

Google Play

Author’s Website

GOODREADS SUMMARY: 

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.

MY REVIEW

I had almost forgotten how much I truly love this book series. Seriously. It takes a reread every once in awhile to just remember how good this original series is and how it just launched one of my favorite series of all time.

What I really love is the way that we get to know the story, the world and characters…all through the eyes of twelve-year-old Percy Jackson, who is a typical preteen boy who just wants to get through school, maybe make some friends and fit in somewhere, hang out with his awesome mom but of course, the world doesn’t work that way and his dad is a god and he’s a half blood and there are monsters after him and maybe a prophecy and why couldn’t he just have a normal life?

It’s written just like that and I appreciate it and love it as an adult and  I can imagine that this kind of story telling works so well with kids. When I met him, there were a lot of us in our 20s and 30s, maybe even older (I think teachers and such) but there were SO many kids and its a reflection of how these books reach to kids. He writes just like a young boy who is dealing with all of this and it feels so geniune and easy to read and frankly, it makes the world easier to understand and the character easier to like. You want Percy to be your best friend, no matter how old you are.

Plus I love Greek gods and goddesses and mythology. It was always one of my favorite things to learn in school. I tried to name a cat once Artemis and my mom was SO not having it but I’ve been a huge fan of Greek mythology for so long. Most books that incorporate Greek stories are always so overly emotional and dramatic and tragic and I usually get tired of them fairly quickly. There is definitely a ton of emotion in all of Rick’s series but he makes the Greek stories easy to understand, he connects it to the real and contemporary world and he makes it so funny. I love that Ares looks like a Hells Angel and I love that Hades is just chilling underground in Los Angeles, hidden by a recording studio. I love everything about that.

What really hit me again after a reread of this book is how good it is, no matter how old you are. I read this for the first time years ago, but I was definitely older than the target audience at the time. I’m even older than that now and I still love the stories, and I think its more than just a nostalgic thing. I think you can read them as a child, a preteen, a teen or an adult and you would still love them. They’re fun and quick paced and hilarious and the characters are so easy to love and root for and the stories are just that good. And I think there a lot of people that love Greek mythology.

I may go back and read the entire series now because that just made me itch for the rest of the story!

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