Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

I actually read this book along time ago, but wanted to see the movie before I reviewed the book.

Percy Jackson is a misfit. Dyslexic. ADHD. You think of a label – Percy Jackson had it! He has spent his school life moving from school to school as his problems with authority, inability to sit still and keep his mouth shut and his less than stellar academic record get him kicked out of school after school until he ends up at Yancy Academy, under the tutelage of Mr Brunner, a Latin teacher with a difference. Together with his friend, Grover, Percy trails along behind the class as they visit  the Metropolitan Museum in search of Greek Gods.

Things go seriously down hill from there. Percy’s Mum has hooked up with a dead beat loser who rules her life with an iron fist and doesn’t like Percy. His father is not around – in fact, Percy knows almost nothing about him, except that he loved the beach and left suddenly for some unknown reason.

Percy has no idea, but his problems all stem from the fact that he is a half blood. The son of a God. As such, he is in constant danger from monsters, fureys and other mythological dangers. As Percy comes of age, his ‘talents’ also begin to manifest and Percy can no longer hide in plain sight. With his world crumbling around him, his mother and Grover try to get him to Camp Half-Blood – with a minotaur hot on their heels.

Of course this is just the beginning as Percy has to adjust to life a s a half blood at camp, discover who his father is and face a task way beyond his comprehension and his fledgling powers.

I enjoyed both the book and the movie. Percy doesn’t spend too much time feeling sorry for himself. In fact he has a tendency to react physically without too much forethought – although his mouth often gets him into more trouble than not!

With Grover and one other half blood, Annabeth who is a daughter of Athena, Percy sets out on a quest to recover Zeus’ Lightning Bolt (which the Gods think he has stolen – but he has no idea what is going on – of course).

As usual, they changed quite a bit of the book to make the film more visually effective, but they did keep to the spirit of the book, if not the sequence. In fact I found it very interesting the parts they did change – The hydra in the film is a great alternative to the chihuahua in Atlanta, but I would have thought the Tunnel of Love at the Fun Park would have worked beautifully on film!

Altogether I really enjoyed the book and can see why it is very popular with the boys at school!