Percy Jackson and the Olympians

 

This series from Rick Riordan is a new discovery for me. I watched the movie, liked it enough but thought that there’s nothing really special about it. About a year (or more, I think) later, I read the first book. That’s where the addiction started.

I have always liked Greek Mythology; ever since I discovered the Greek myth book my sister was reading for a class. There is just something appealing about the gods of Olympus and the adventures of the heroes. For me, the gods and the heroes of Greek myth is a mix of sheer awesomeness and poetic douchebaggery.

This is why I immediately liked the book. Actually, I was like a junkie; I would finish one book in one sitting (usually sacrificing sleep for it) and get restless because I bought them one at a time. Whenever I finished one I would get frustrated because I was dying to read the next one, which I didn’t have yet.

Anyway, the story started when a young demigod named Percy Jackson, through a series of violent events and the after the shock of finding out his bestfriend Grover is half-goat, came to Camp Half-Blood. Here he found out who his father is, trained for battle, and got involved in a lot  more violent series of events. At Camp Half-Blood (and all over the United States, actually) he met Annabeth, Chiron, Luke, and other people and creatures who will be with him as he moves closer to the fulfillment of a prophecy.

Ah, yes. The prophecy.

The Percy Jackson series is anchored on a prophecy that is central to the story; a prophecy that involves a child of the big three (Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades), a decision, and the powerful Titans.  As the series progresses, new people are met, old ones are found, battles are won, and the gods and goddesses occasionally provide a helping hand. But the reason I liked this series is because while all the good hero stuff happened, a lot of bad villain stuff happened too; some people were lost, sometimes violently and heartbreakingly, friendships end, battles become more vicious, and the gods and goddesses themselves create many many more problems.

I expected a crash course in Greek mythology, I expected not-so-young-adult situations despite the series’ classification of young adult fiction. I got those. But what I got that I did not really expect is the humor. The gods and goddesses were really funny. And by funny I mean that I sometimes cannot stop myself from laughing out loud.

The writing style is in the point of view of Percy Jackson and the whole series is written with great wit and an obvious love for mythology. Each of the gods and goddesses are portrayed in a way that their characteristics, the essence of their being, in the old stories still show even when put in a modern setting (like even if Poseidon wears Hawaiian board shorts what he does and what he says makes him undeniably the god of the oceans). The demigods, themselves, also portray some of the characteristic of their respective divine parents. However, I would have to say that the kids are a little bit smarter than their parents, probably because they aren’t blinded by arrogance.

This series kinda has it all – humor, violence, a bit of drama, maybe a bit of romance too. It’s a good series for kids too, the same way Harry Potter is. It teaches many different qualities, but mostly it teaches what you can achieve if you are smart, courageous, and have a sense of responsibility.

But Percy Jackson’s story does not end in the fulfillment of the prophecy and the end of the series. Because before the series ended, the Oracle gave a new prophecy (them Greeks love their prophecies, don’t they?) which will be resolved (I’m guessing) in the next Camp-Half Blood series, The Heroes of Olympus. I already got the first book so I expect I will be writing about it soon.

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