And yet another Young Adult Fantasy novel. I don’t know where I have got this sudden obsession from, but whenever I go to Eloor Library, I am drawn more towards the left- most corner where the children’s books are.
So, when I came across The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan in the Returned Books pile I pounced. I just found the cover so appealing that I borrowed it without even checking the back of the book to find out what it was about.
Turns out, that was a good thing. When I went home and read the blurb, I was like ehh…not my thing. But once I started reading, the book had me just hooked.
This is an amazing read!
Percy Jackson, the hero of the book, has dyslexia and ADHD (Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). He has been kicked out of 6 schools within 6 years because of his hyperactivity, which gets him into lots of trouble with school authorities.
He faces some weird incidents in his life, which he is unable to explain away. Then, one day, when he is on a vacation with his mother, he comes to know the hard way that his father is a Greek God.
No, I don’t mean “Greek God” as in handsome, I mean an actual immortal Greek God. Now, contrary to what we have been thinking the Greek Gods are not myths, they exist and are currently living in Olympus located in the 600th floor (non-existent in reality) of the Empire State Building in New York.
Once he finds out this truth, his life is one big adventurous roller-coaster ride. He is asked by the Gods to hunt for Zeus lightning bolt, which has been supposedly stolen by Hades (the Lord of the Underworld). For this, he needs to make a journey to the Underworld to get back the lightning bolt. Along the way to stop him are Medusa, Ares, and Procrustes, but he is able to get away from them all and finish his task!
What I Loved About the Book
- Perseus (Percy) Jackson is not some super-duper extraordinary kid. He is a boy who struggles with his disorders and people around him. But he is courageous and clever, stubborn and loyal. He tries to be the best that he can be. Some portions of the book deal very movingly with his emotions and his relationships with people around him (especially his mother).
When Percy realizes that his father is a God, it explains his dyslexia – by birth he is more attuned to the Greek lettering rather than English, which is why he struggles with his studies. His ADHD is because as the son of a warrior God, he needs to be able to focus on different things happening in the battleground. I thought this was a very nice explanation that makes him feel better about himself.
- For those who are familiar with Greek mythology, this is an interesting read, as all the Gods are updated for the modern world. So, you have Ares the God of War behaving like an immortal bully on a motorcycle. I also loved Cerberus (the 3 headed dog who guards the entrance of Hades). He turns out to be just another dog who wants someone to toss a ball over to him !
- The chapter titles are extremely funny ( for example, “I vaporize my Pre-Algebra teacher”), and the cover of the book very attractive and reflects the spirit of the novel.
What I did not Love
Practically, nothing, which is why I rate it so high!
Now, off to queue up for the rest of the books in this series.