Caramel’s class was reading the first of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians series before schools closed down. So of course the book bunnies decided to read it themselves at home. Today Marshmallow who already finished the whole series is reviewing the first book here: The Lightning Thief.
Marshmallow’s Quick Take: If you like Greek mythology, then this might be the book for you.
Marshmallow’s Summary (with spoilers): Percy Jackson has been expelled from every single school he has been in. At every school Percy has been stalked by strange people. One time, Percy could have sworn that the man following him only had one eye. Percy hopes that the new school that he is attending will be different.
In his new school, Percy’s only friend is a boy named Grover. One day, his math teacher Mrs. Dodds, who is not his favorite teacher because she hates him, tells him to come talk to her privately. He is in big trouble because she transforms into a monster. (Later he finds out that she is a Fury.) She attacks him and tries to kill him. His Latin teacher tosses him a pen that when uncapped turns into a sword named Riptide. He defeats her and she turns into dust. Afterwards, the day continues as if nothing happened and everyone seems to have forgotten about Mrs. Dodds, as if she never existed.
When Percy and Grover are boarding a bus, they see three creepy and elderly women holding a yarn. One of them takes out a pair of shears and cuts the rope. Grover seems very uneasy as he watches the women. Percy thinks that they look like the Fates, which we learn later that they are. They are cutting someone’s life thread, and that spooks Percy (like it would spook anyone else).
Later, Percy’s mom tries to get him to a mysterious camp that she calls “Camp Half-Blood”. On the way, they are attacked by a minotaur. His mother turns into golden light as she is attacked. Percy and Grover eventually make it to Camp Half-Blood without Percy’s mother.
Later, Grover reveals that he is a satyr. Percy’s whole world turns upside down. The counselors explain that every camper at Camp Half-Blood had been stalked by monsters for their whole lives because they are all demigods. He is astonished to learn that this is the only safe place for half-bloods–that’s what they are called: they are half god and half human. Percy is “undecided”, meaning that his god parent is still unknown. But eventually he is claimed by the god of oceans and seas, Poseidon.
This is not good news because a prophecy says that a child of the Big Three (Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades) will either destroy Olympus or save it. But then we learn that someone has stolen Zeus’s lightning bolt and Percy is the prime suspect. It is up to him to clear his name before he is destroyed by Zeus, god of the sky.
Marshmallow’s Review: This is a very good book, and a great way to learn about Greek mythology. It is funny and it is well-written. Rick Riordan has written a very interesting book that can be enjoyed by all ages. (I know for a fact that Sprinkles agrees.) It is a great initial book to begin the Percy Jackson books that will teach readers to learn about Greek mythology.
There are some interesting characters (my favorite is Clarisse, a daughter of Ares, though she is quite mean sometimes–she does get much better in the later books), and some are really scary (the Oracle for example). The plot is interesting too and a mystery that the readers need to solve. There are hints that can help you figure things out before the end, but even if you do, you will want to finish the book.
There are movies of the first two books in the series, but apparently the author did not enjoy them.
Marshmallow’s rating: 95%.