With any beginning comes an ending, and 2014 bring with it the end of one of my favourite series, Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson.
And as I usually do before the release date of the finale of a beloved series, I plan to re-read the entire series (short stories included). However, this time I’m going to review each instalment. Since there are 11 books to get through, I’m going to start now.
I suppose I should start with an intro.
The Percy Jackson series is one of the core book series I read in high school, along with J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter, Suzanne Collin’s The Hunger Games, Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan and Alison Croggon’s Books of Pellinor. Among them, Percy Jackson and the Olympians is the only series that has yet to end.
In addition, PJO was the series that I should have read as a kid. I’ve loved Greek/Roman mythology since watching Disney’s Hercules (which is horrendously inaccurate…or horrendously “retold”). Prior to reading Percy Jackson, I read books for kids about classical mythology, as well as fictional ones like Terry Deary’s The Fire Thief, which centers around Prometheus, who escapes his punishment on the rock and is chased by a Fury through time. Eventually I broke down and read Margaret Hamilton’s Mythology and learned the “official” myths, gods, goddesses and major epics.
Enter Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians.
I bought the boxed set, after watching the movie (comments on that in the future), and reading Sea of Monsters, which I had gotten at a discount bookstore. (Odd way to start a new series, but why not?) I loved the series, and greatly anticipate the ending.
Part of me wanting to review the series before the finale is published is to get a real sense of the story that I may have missed.
But as with most fandoms, coughtwilightcough, the question really is the content worth the hype? The community of readers surrounding this series is vast in numbers, and while I don’t think PJO is remotely close to Twilight in terms of…well, most things (characters, plot, writing), I’d like to figure out if I spent a good chunk of my time reading something worth while.
Each book will be split into chunks that will be analyzed separately: plot, characters, writing, extras, and overall verdict. (Usually in that order, sometimes grouped into a post.) (Oh, and the format may be a little different for the short stories.)
Well, I’ve got eleven books to read a review…first up: The Lightning Thief.
“When I ran out of myths, he was disappointed and asked me if I could make up something new with the same characters. […] Off the top of my head, I made up Percy Jackson and told Haley all about his quest to recover Zeus’ lightning bolt in modern day America. It took about three nights to tell the whole story, and when I was done, Haley told me I should write it out as a book.” -Rick Riordan