The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

The Lightning Thief

Alternate Cover Edition can be found here. 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 wh...

Title:The Lightning Thief
Author:
Rating:
Edition Language:English

The Lightning Thief Reviews

  • Brigid *Flying Kick-a-pow!*

    Well I feel like I've rewritten/updated my review of this like a billion times at this point, but I'm here to do it again. I re-read this over the span of the past two days when I had to take two super-long bus trips. This was the third time I've read the whole thing, I'm pretty sure (kind of the fourth time I guess, since I read a lot of it out loud to my younger siblings last year). There are few books that I loved when I was 12 that I still deeply love now, and this is one

    Well I feel like I've rewritten/updated my review of this like a billion times at this point, but I'm here to do it again. I re-read this over the span of the past two days when I had to take two super-long bus trips. This was the third time I've read the whole thing, I'm pretty sure (kind of the fourth time I guess, since I read a lot of it out loud to my younger siblings last year). There are few books that I loved when I was 12 that I still deeply love now, and this is one of those few books. In fact, the more times I read it the more I fall in love with it. I adore the series as a whole and think it develops so wonderfully as it goes along, and sometimes I almost forget how great the first book is. Maybe it's not the strongest of the series, but it's still fantastic. It's exciting, it's hilarious, there are so many lovable characters and great character development/backstories/etc. and as a giant mythology nerd I love how all the Greek myths are tied in and modernized. The rest of the series just gets better and better, and I love the Heroes of Olympus series as well––and it always makes me happy to go back to where it all started, and remember why I first fell in love with this book/series nine years ago. (Gosh that makes me feel old.)

    ------

    Old/crappier review from like two years ago under the spoiler.

  • Destinee Sutton

    When I was about halfway through this book, I started making a list of its similarities to Harry Potter. Here is a sampling from that list:

    1. There are three young heroes: a brainy girl (Annabeth/Hermione), a funny screw-up type (Grover/Ron), and a somewhat troubled but very brave lead (Harry/Percy).

    2. People freak when the Harry/Percy character says the name of a powerful character.

    3. The main bad guy (Kronos/Voldemort) is seeking to return to his former power, but most people are totally in d

    When I was about halfway through this book, I started making a list of its similarities to Harry Potter. Here is a sampling from that list:

    1. There are three young heroes: a brainy girl (Annabeth/Hermione), a funny screw-up type (Grover/Ron), and a somewhat troubled but very brave lead (Harry/Percy).

    2. People freak when the Harry/Percy character says the name of a powerful character.

    3. The main bad guy (Kronos/Voldemort) is seeking to return to his former power, but most people are totally in denial of that happening.

    4. The heroes train at a school that divides its students according to their character. (Chiron, the head trainer of the camp, equals Dumbledore.)

    5. Chiron/Dumbledore knows a prophecy about Percy/Harry but won't tell Percy/Harry what it is exactly.

    6. Percy/Harry has a gross stepfather named Smelly Gabe who protects him during his childhood, so Smelly Gabe obviously equals the Dursleys.

    7. Harry/Percy can talk to a certain animal because of his special gifts (Harry could talk to snakes, Percy can talk to horses).

    8. Riordan's three young heroes face down a three-headed dog at the end of their big quest, which if I'm not mistaken is exactly what happens in HP1 (granted, the three-headed dog is straight out of Greek mythology, so I should cut Riordan some slack on this one).

    I could go on (and on and on) which would be fun for me, but I won't. Instead, I'll shock you by saying that I totally loved this completely derivative book. It's super fun and fast-moving and the fact that it's kind of a HP rip-off actually makes me like it more. God, I loved Harry Potter. The Lighting Thief is like methadone. That might be what I said about the

    but it's more true here. I can't wait to read the second one!

  • Cara

    Really is there something I could say that hasn't been said? Doubtful, but in utterly stupid human style I will write a review anyway attempting to tell people how cool this book is.

    This is plainly an

    idea. I had always wondered what happened to the kids of half gods/goddess and humans. Here's the story to quench your curiosity. Percy Jackson has been dumped around from border school to border school. He has never been quite like anybody else, but as the end of sixth grade approaches h

    Really is there something I could say that hasn't been said? Doubtful, but in utterly stupid human style I will write a review anyway attempting to tell people how cool this book is.

    This is plainly an

    idea. I had always wondered what happened to the kids of half gods/goddess and humans. Here's the story to quench your curiosity. Percy Jackson has been dumped around from border school to border school. He has never been quite like anybody else, but as the end of sixth grade approaches he'll find out how unique he actually is...

    I picked this up thinking that I would enjoy it, but not to the extent of really being

    so fast. Literally from the first pages I knew I was gonna finish this book. It's geared towards middle grade readers and mostly male I think, but really all that goes away when you're reading this. As an older reader I did see most of the twists coming but that is because the author is generous about hints, which I have always liked. What really sold it for me though is the action. I have mentioned this numerous times, but I'll say it again,

    . Give me a good fight sequence and I'm there.

    A few reviews mention how this is ripoff of Harry Potter, and now that I think about it I could see where they are coming from. There are definitely similarities, but to be honest I didn't really catch that, (I guess I'm kind of dim...I shouldn't probably admit to that *shakes head* moving on) because the world the author set was so original that the similar setup can be easily forgiven.

    We all love heroes. Especially ones like Percy. People never expect much from him, and that's what makes this journey of his so personal to the reader. You root for him and are so glad that his muscling his way through it. It has the feel of cheering for the underdog. And I'm guessing this underdog is going to blow everyone out of the water.

    Oh glorious goodness they made a movie!

    is a link to the movie trailer.

  • Ela

    I'm slightly ashamed to say that I watched the movie before I read the book. But I'm even more ashamed that I watched the movie only to experience the hotness that is Logan Lerman.

    But, come on! Someone tell me that

    , is not hot:

    Really. What did I tell you? (I do imagine that you probably won't read the rest of the review anf just stare at this gif instead, but that's no reason not to like my review! :D)

    But, I really have to thank Logan. I really do. Because without his unfreakingbelieveabl

    I'm slightly ashamed to say that I watched the movie before I read the book. But I'm even more ashamed that I watched the movie only to experience the hotness that is Logan Lerman.

    But, come on! Someone tell me that

    , is not hot:

    Really. What did I tell you? (I do imagine that you probably won't read the rest of the review anf just stare at this gif instead, but that's no reason not to like my review! :D)

    But, I really have to thank Logan. I really do. Because without his unfreakingbelieveable hotness, I wouldn't have watched the movie, and I would've never read the awesomeness of The Lightning Thief.

    Yes, I loved the book. I've always taken an interest in Greek Mythology and I thought Rick Riordan's take on it was very unique, and unlike anything I've read before.

    I absolutely loved Camp- Halfblood. Well, it sure seemed better than the budget summer camps I've been to. RR seriously out did himself with writing the camp. I could imagine everything vividly and I like to think that I know the camp from back to front. The cabins would have to be my favourite feature of the camp, though. If only they were like that in the camps I've been to.

    Percy. What can I say? The guy has amazing underwater powers, is kick- ass and is a demigod. He's super loyal to his friends and family, is brave and has the looks (this is the part when you look at the gif of Logan Lerman again ;D). And he can make me laugh. Come on. You have to give a guy who make you laugh some credit. In short, the guy's the full package.

    Another thing I loved were the other characters. Especially Annabeth, who looks like Cinderella in Percy's words (am I right? I don't have the book on me, sorry. Stupid library fines). And I'm expecting something to develop between her and Percy, if you know what I mean....

    So, yeah. I loved the book, it was exciting, fast- paced and humorous. Just one thing though, I'm kind of pissed that they didn't have cabins in the movie. Or Clarisse. Or the Oracle. Though it's hardly RR's fault. I just had to get it out there.

  • Samadrita

    That's it. I have had my fill of too many stupid, brain-cell destroying comments posted on this review in the past few months asking me to write a 'best-selling book' before attempting to take apart Rick Riordan's writing. As if the exclusive privilege of negatively criticizing a book is accorded only to published writers and not ordinary reviewers/readers.

    I

    have the right to record my feelings about a book in

    review. And it's such a shame that I am actually being forc

    That's it. I have had my fill of too many stupid, brain-cell destroying comments posted on this review in the past few months asking me to write a 'best-selling book' before attempting to take apart Rick Riordan's writing. As if the exclusive privilege of negatively criticizing a book is accorded only to published writers and not ordinary reviewers/readers.

    I

    have the right to record my feelings about a book in

    review. And it's such a shame that I am actually being forced to put up this edit to make people aware of this fact. If this review hurts your sentiments as a fan, I am sorry I can't help you there. You must grow up and learn to let dichotomous opinions co-exist in harmony on the same page. That is all.

    Brutal honesty ahead. Read at the expense of having to respect someone else's views.

    ---------

    What a feeble attempt at recreating the Harry Potter magic! Aside from being highly unoriginal and unimaginative, the book grates on your nerves due to the frequency of Percy's lame attempts at sounding witty. Seriously, I'm supposed to laugh at his observations on the

    and

    ?

    Not only did the writer not bother racking his brains to come up with a plot or a proper story, choosing instead to recycle key elements of the Harry Potter series, but he also ignored important aspects of a fantasy novel, one of which is the language. To call the narration just bad will be an understatement. Same can be said about the dialogue and the way the plot progresses - it's one cliched event unfolding after another.

    The only novel thing about this book is the seamless integration of Greek mythology into a fantasy-based set-up. The 1 star is for that.

    And so I'd like to put a premature end to my review because I just realized the futility of writing one of a book I hated.

  • Emily May

    Were you a bit weird in school? Or are you still in school and think you're kinda weird? I mean, everyone is weird, but you know that I mean. Maybe you didn't fit in, maybe people thought you were a bit of a loser. Maybe you had learning difficulties, were a target for bullies, got into trouble a lot, maybe it seemed like your teachers just didn't like you. Maybe you sucked at reading and were even diagnosed with dyslexia. Or ADHD.

    Well, don't worry. Truth is, you're actually most likely a child

    Were you a bit weird in school? Or are you still in school and think you're kinda weird? I mean, everyone is weird, but you know that I mean. Maybe you didn't fit in, maybe people thought you were a bit of a loser. Maybe you had learning difficulties, were a target for bullies, got into trouble a lot, maybe it seemed like your teachers just didn't like you. Maybe you sucked at reading and were even diagnosed with dyslexia. Or ADHD.

    Well, don't worry. Truth is, you're actually most likely a child of the gods with secret powers that enable you to zap those bullies and fulfill your true destiny.

    Lol, this book is amazing. My only regret is that I didn't have it when I was twelve years old because I would have read this until it was falling apart in my hands. Every insecure kid (so basically every kid) should read

    . I would want my hypothetical kids of the future to read this book.

    - discovering that everything people labelled as "weird" or negative about you is actually caused by your secret awesomeness. Pretty perfect message, if you ask me.

    I know, I know - this is plain old childhood wish fulfillment at its finest. But who cares? The best kids books are all about wish fulfillment to some extent and it's not like Percy Jackson doesn't have his fair share of enemies and heartache. It's the same idea that we all loved to buy into. The orphaned and neglected Harry Potter discovering he is a wizard. The nerdy loser-ish Peter Parker developing special abilities and becoming Spiderman. Children in the middle of WWII discovering a secret world through a wardrobe door in which they reign as royalty. Percy Jackson finding out he is the son of a god and has his own super powers.

    On top of the powerful message, this is a fast-paced exciting fantasy story full of friendships, Greek mythology, magic, mystery, bad guys and girls, and constant adventure. I enjoyed it now, despite me being a good ten years older than the target audience. I would have enjoyed it even more ten years ago. You should definitely go read this. Then, when you're done, give it to a kid to read too.

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  • Khanh (the meanie)

    As someone who has worked in Los Angeles, I can tell you that this is completely accurate.

    While Harry Potter was spending his summers at the Dursleys, Percy Jackson attended Camp Half-Blood. This book has done the impossible:

    Yes, that's right, that snot-faced, lily-livered waste of air of the very same name from the

    universe. That n

    As someone who has worked in Los Angeles, I can tell you that this is completely accurate.

    While Harry Potter was spending his summers at the Dursleys, Percy Jackson attended Camp Half-Blood. This book has done the impossible:

    Yes, that's right, that snot-faced, lily-livered waste of air of the very same name from the

    universe. That name is now relegated to the ranks of "acceptable," because of my love for this book.

    Perseus (Percy) Jackson is the kind of kid with whom you can't help sympathizing. He is the type that's born under a dark star, because inevitably, wherever he goes, whatever he does, however good his intentions, he can't help but fuck everything up. Everything that can, does and will go wrong. A simple field trip can turn into a disaster in seconds.

    Jay-Z's got 99 problems, Percy might have more. He nearly flunks all his classes, he's got dyslexia, he's got ADHD, and then there's Nancy Bobofit.

    Nancy Bobofit is not a major character in the book. I have to mention her because her character resounded with me. I had my own Nancy Bobofit back in grade school, only her name is Mimi. Nearly 2 decades later, the memory of her horrible face still makes me shudder. But I digress.

    As if the bullies aren't bad enough, his dad is a no-show, his stepfather is LITERALLY named Ugli, and there are crones foretelling Percy's death as well as a minotaur chasing his ass around. AND NOBODY'S TELLING HIM A SINGLE FUCKING THING. What's with all the secrecy, man?

    As it turned out, Percy is *whispers* special. He is a half-blood, meaning one of his parents is a Greek deity. He gets sent to Camp Half-Blood, with roughly 100 other kids like him.

    It's a freaky place for a kid who's known nothing but relative normalcy his entire life. All of a sudden, he's playing Pinochle with a Greek God (Dionysus---what a drunk), his best friend Grover turns out to be a satyr, and the gorgeous blond girl who rescues him thinks he's a doofus and she keeps calling him

    To be fair, Percy had it coming. He is kind of a seaweed brain.

    Not your best moment, Percy.

    As it turned out, Percy IS special. His dad is one of the Big Three gods. Which kind of sucks, because that's not supposed to happen.

    A lot of people would think it was pretty cool to have such a powerful dad...not really.

    Not only does Percy have to struggle to fit in at Camp Half-Blood, but there's some shit going on in Mount Olympus. The gods are fighting again (when are they not)...

    ...and consequently, like a brother playing a prank on his younger siblings, someone's stuff was stolen. And Zeus thinks that his bro, Poseidon, put Percy up to it.

    Of course, blame the poor kid. Now Percy is shit out of luck YET AGAIN, and he's got no choice but to go on this huge stupid quest into the underworld (Los Angeles, ha!) to clear his name.

    He's not alone, he's accompanied by the

    (she of the seaweed brain name-calling), as well as

    .

    It's going to be a loooooooong trip to the Underworld.

    : THIS. THIS IS HOW YOU DO GREEK MYTHOLOGY. I am a Greek mythology buff. I FUCKING LOVED THIS BOOK. This book is just absolutely fucking perfect in every way when it comes to rewriting and reinterpreting the Greek pantheon. It is so hilariously, awesomely irreverent, but completely fitting. The gods are reimagined, but they stay true to their true nature, and

    . This book is so fantastically snarky to the Greek gods. Everything is incredibly well-explained to a lay audience, like how the Greek gods can't seem to keep it in their pants.

    And apparently, the habit runs true for both male and female goddesses.

    I had my doubts about the execution of the premise of Greek mythology, and all my doubts have been destroyed.

    : Yes, Percy is a special snowflake, but HELL, I LOVED THE LITTLE SHIT. He's got a special destiny. He is a special child. I DON'T CARE. Percy is such a sympathetic character, and although he won't be replacing Harry Potter in my heart any time soon, there is a special spot for him. He can give up pretty fast. He's kind of a wimp, but you know, finding out that you're a hald-blooded demigod is kind of a big deal, and I understand his attitude of "GET ME THE FUCK OUT OF HERE."

    He doesn't really want to do anything big. He's pretty stupid sometimes (Auntie Em, geez), he's not exactly heroic. He only does the heroic shit when there are no other options.

    I loved Annabeth, she is all I could want from a female supporting character. I can't say that I'm fond of Grover...but I can't help feeling that we'll be seeing more of him in the future.

    Overall: a fantastic book.

    I found myself giggling throughout the book, and an hour after reading it, there's still a smile on my face that can't be wiped off.

  • Jesse (JesseTheReader)

    A+ Writing

    A+ Plot

    A+ Characters

    A+ MONSTERS

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I wish I hadn't watched the movie before reading it, because I felt like that ruined a bit of enjoyment of this book for me, but for the most part I had such a fun time reading this book and I'm looking forward to continuing on with the series.

  • Sasha Alsberg

    I need more......

  • kazzyboy

    i feel like this is one of those books you would stock in garages for decades until your children come across them and are suddenly forced to humanize you for the conceivably interesting creature that you were, and thus ameliorating your relationship with them while they are inspired to dream

    ummm can't wait to force my kids to read this tbh


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