Percy Jackson -- YA Series Review


Title: Percy Jackson and the Olympians
Author: Rick Riordan
Genre: YA fantasy

Summary:
After finding out that he is the son of Poseidon, this series follows the adventures of Percy Jackson and his demigod friends.

Thoughts: My first experience with Percy Jackson was the movie. My husband and I decided to head over to the cheap seats and watch something fun. I knew that it was based off of a book, but I never bothered to pick it up. While spending Thanksgiving with my brother, he sent me home with the whole five book series. They sat on my shelf for awhile while I read other books. For some reason, I just kept avoiding them. However, last week, I finally started reading them. I couldn't put the series down!

After finding out that he is the son of Poseidon, Percy is taken to Camp Half-Blood where he meets and befriends several demigods -- the children of a union between a god and a human. However, Percy is different. He finds out that he is a child of the big 3 -- Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades. For various reasons, this is a very big deal. Without giving anything away, the series follows Percy and his friends on many adventures that lead them from places like Hades to the 600th floor of the Empire State's Building.

Riordan did an excellent job with this series. Using the Greek mythology as a basis for the series, I was a little apprehensive about his interpretation of the myths. However, he does an amazing job. I had to keep my BlackBerry next to me in order to look things up while I read. Not only does he have rather obscure figures from Greek mythology (i.e., Kampe and the Hundred-Handed Ones), he was able to imagine the gods' role in modern day culture. For example, Hermes created the internet. The world he creates is colourful, rich, and fun.

The author also spent a lot of time fleshing his characters out. I felt that, even though they may not have been the main characters, everyone in the books were given a lot thought. Furthermore, the characters matured over the course of the series. They start out with Percy being found at 12 and end when he is 16. Riordan was able to show this maturity in a believable way.

The only thing I can liken these books to is the Harry Potter series. However, unlike Harry, I felt that Percy was a likable character. While he was the main character, he did not dominate the books the way Harry did. During the off-season of Camp Half-Blood, each character was shaped by their own experiences and not by Percy. To put it another way, they all had a life outside of Percy. In addition, Percy accepted his fate and position as Poseidon's son.

Not only were these books and quick and entertaining read, I feel that young adults would be introduced to the rich history of Greek mythology in a very accessible and fun way. Putting the myths into modern day society, children would be able to relate at a different level.

Overall, the Percy Jackson series has become one of my favorites. I look forward to picking up The Heroes of Olympus.

Rating: 4/5

Complete 2010 book list

Currently: Ghost Story by Peter Straub

Sinn

1 comment:

  1. I read the first one but haven't read the rest. They are sitting on my kindle screaming at me to read them. lol.

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    "If you’re a freak like me, Wave your flag! If you’re a freak like me, Get off your ass! It’s our time now, To let it all hang out!" I am a recovering English major, closet bibliophile, breve addicted, zombie lover with a rockabilly and heavy metal fetish.