“Being a half-blood is dangerous. It’s scary. Most of the time, it gets you killed in painful, nasty ways. You might be one of us. And once you know that, it’s only a matter of time before they sense it too, and they’ll come for you. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.” – Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book One: The Lightning Thief, page 1
- Riordan, Rick. Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book One: The Lightning Thief.
New York: Hyperion, 2005.
- Riordan, Rick. Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book Two: The Sea of Monsters.
New York: Hyperion, 2006.
- Riordan, Rick. Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book Three: The Titan’s Curse.
New York: Hyperion, 2007.
- Riordan, Rick. Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book Four: The Battle of the Labyrinth.
New York: Hyperion, 2008.
- Riordan, Rick. Percy Jackson & the Olympians, Book Five: The Last Olympian.
New York: Hyperion, 2009.
Percy Jackson tries to be a good kid. Sure, he has trouble in school: Percy has dyslexia and ADHD, both of which make it hard for him to concentrate in class and crazy things seem to happen to Percy, often resulting in detention, suspension, or even expulsion from school. And sure, he has trouble at home, too: Percy has never met his father and he doesn’t get along particularly well with his stepfather, often sparking fights between his mother and her new husband. But Percy tries to be a good kid; he really does.
So, when Percy joins a school field trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he vows to behave. Of course, despite his best intentions, Percy is attacked by his pre-algebra teacher and in vaporizing her with a pen-turned-sword, Percy ultimately discovers the reason he seems to attract trouble: Percy is a demigod. With the help of his best friend – who is actually a satyr – Percy travels to Camp Half-Blood, home to other demigods like him. At Camp, Percy learns Greek mythology, archery, sword-fighting, and other skills that he will need to survive. Percy is comfortable at Camp; it is the only place he has ever felt truly at home. However, when Percy discovers that the Titan lord Kronos is attempting to rise from the pit of Tartarus and it becomes clear that another demigod from Camp is helping Kronos do this, Percy leaves the safety of Camp, embarking on a quest to not only prevent a war among the gods, but to save the entire world in the process.
This five-book series offers everything an epic saga should have: heroes, monsters, magic, friendship, betrayal, love, war, and death. The characters within the series are relatable, the language is consistent and is written in the vernacular used by the targeted age group, and despite working within an imaginative setting that combines the belief system of ancient Greece and the day-to-day life of New York, the series effectively blends fantasy with reality to create a believable sequence of events. The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series is a coming-of-age tale, made that much greater by the distinctly Grecian – and yet still modern – themes found throughout.