The Lightning Thief (#1) by Rick Riordan

Published: 1st March 2006 (print)/ 13 January 2010 (audio) Goodreads badge
Publisher:
Disney Hyperion Books/Penguin Audiobooks
Pages: 375/10 hrs
Narrator: Jesse Bernstein
Format: Audiobook
Genre: Young Adult
★   ★   ★  ★  ★  – 5 Stars

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. 

From the minute I started this book I was hooked. I have wanted to read this for literal years and I’m so glad when I was finally able to it was as great as I’d always heard it to be. Riordan’s voice is fantastic and Percy is a character that shines on the page. Starting as a twelve year old it was a surprise since I’d always thought him older but it worked well because the naïve and inexperienced but enthusiastic mentality works well, Especially as Percy starts to learn about who he is, what he is capable of and the hidden world in which he lives.

I love the Greek myths as a general rule and the explanations and justifications Riordan uses to explain them in our world is fantastic and makes complete sense. I almost wanted to live in such a world. The modernisation of the ancient figures is incredibly clever and the chance to hear more about the well known gods, but some lesser ones as well is great as Riordan doesn’t focus solely on the big well known names.

I cannot understate how clever this book is. The locations of Olympus, the Underworld and how seamlessly the gods have infiltrated our world is amazing. As Percy learns we learn but the writing connects it to the story so there are never clunky exposition and everything is told through a character naturally in dialogue or through experience by Percy himself. What is clever is how Riordan has used real learning issues like ADHD and dyslexia and made it into an advantage for Percy and those like him. There’s a reason, it has a purpose. I loved the reworking of issues into advantages for a secret life.

There is adventure and danger, plenty of chances for Percy and others to be heroes and we see the start of this new world. I practically dove into book two after finishing this one. It held strong from start to finish and I loved every minute of it.

You can purchase The Lightning Thief via the following

QBD | Booktopia | Book Depository

Dymocks | WorderyAngus and Robinson

 Fishpond | Amazon | Amazon Aust | Audible

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