In light of the new Disney+ series set to come out in 2024, I have decided to write about the book series it follows, and the writer behind it all. Rick Riordan released the first book of the Percy Jackson series in 2005, kickstarting the fantasy series. Though the books are intended for middle school readers, Riordan stated, “I didn’t simplify anything to write The Lighting Theif.” because kids dislike being treated as stupid.
The book series follows a young boy named Percy, who figures out how to maneuver a world he’s been thrown into. Percy, among other characters, struggles in regular school due to his ADHD and dyslexia. Riordan purposely made Percy have these conditions to honor the potential kids with these issues posses. Riordan’s son was in the process of getting tested for ADHD and dyslexia while The Lightning Theif was being written. Riordan had experienced working with children like Percy and his son many times since he was a teacher. Riordan had read up on these conditions as well.
The book series introduces many famous greek myths and figures. In the first book, Percy finds out he’s a demi-god and finds his way to a camp for kids like him. Percy had always been known as a troublemaker, but in the first book, he found out he wasn’t alone, and that he was talented. Riordan says that “It’s not a bad thing to be different. Sometimes, it’s the mark of being very, very talented. That’s what Percy discovers about himself in The Lightning Thief.” The book introduces us to his best friend Grover early on, who isn’t a demi-god, but a close friend nonetheless; and a girl named Annabeth, who he met not long after he discovered the camp. This book starts as a single quest to get an important weapon for Zeus, but then a big underlying issue emerges, introducing Kronos as the overall enemy.
In the second book Sea of Monsters, Percy goes on another quest, this time trying to help save the camp that has brought him in. Though he wasn’t the original quest holder, he decided he had to help. The camp is surrounded by a magical force field, guarding the camp against monsters, but the tree giving the power to this force field had been poisoned.
The Titan’s Curse introduced a larger figure in greek mythology, the titan Atlas. Percy and many other allies must rescue Artemis, a greek goddess, from the grip of the titans. Percy is forced to make sacrifices and break promises. Percy, Annabeth, and Grover end up teaming with the Hunters of Artemis to find her and take down whatever evil is lurking
The myth of Daedalus, and his son Icarus is introduced in the next book. After Percy’s first year of high school ends, before it even starts, he and his friends must traverse the Labyrinth. In Battle of the Labyrinth, Percy finds terrible secrets, and perhaps an upper hand, as war draws closer and the camp becomes endangered. This book is the starting point of war, and with the help of a genius architect, they might just win.
The Last Olympian has been the last book in the series for over ten years. After Kronos’ army has grown stronger than ever, the demi-gods have been gearing up for war. The Titan of Time has recruited monsters, and demi-gods alike. With the chances looking grim, Percy finally fulfills a prophecy unfolding on his sixteenth birthday.
Although this series has been finished for over ten years, a new book is going to be added to the mix. Percy Jackson and the Chalice of the Gods was announced Tuesday, October 18. The book can be read alone, but follows Percy’s narrative once again as he finds himself doing quests for the gods, which was the last thing he wanted to do. Percy is trying to get into a college residing in a Roman demi-god camp. To enter the college, he must have three letters of recommendation from the gods, and he finds himself on their dorrstep once again.
With the new announcements of the Disney+ series and Rick Riordan’s new book, fans are bubbling with excitement. However the book is set to release in late 2023, and the show in early 2024, so fans have to wait a while. The books follow Percy’s point of view, and the character takes after the author, with a sarcastic narrative and a sharp tongue. The book series may be aimed at younger audiences, but Riordan wishes for adults to enjoy it too.
Picture of Rick Riordan. Photo Provided.