Saturday, May 21, 2011

Of gods and little fishes.

Book: Percy Jackson and the Olympians Book 1: The Lightning Thief

Author: Rick Riordan

Published: 2005 (Miramax Books)

I think I’ve gotten all the title in the right order. I picked this one up at Sid and Nancy’s consignment shop in Five Points, Columbia SC during my last week of school up there.

A dark full bookshelf labeled BOOK EXCHANGE—TAKE A BOOK, LEAVE A BOOK sits among secondhand shoes and racks of other people’s pants and old doors strung with bath curtains for dressing rooms. Being the math wizard that all journalism students are required to become (much to our collective dismay), I figured if I brought five of my own books I didn’t want and left them, I could take five interesting books with me and whatever vintage clothes I could afford that weekend. Percy Jackson Book 1 (like hell am I going to write that whole title out each time) came back with me.

I didn’t start reading it until about a week after I moved back to North Augusta, but once I started it read like a horse at a good gallop: fast and smooth and exciting.

Yeah, yeah, I know it’s aimed at the decade below mine (my fifth-grade teacher mom says her students like the series), but I got too caught up in the story to remember that. Which, Constant Reader, is great praise.
It’s a great adventure, nicely told with sentences that move the action along but aren’t overloaded. Percy’s a snarky 12-year-old with his heart in the right place, and he always acts and talks exactly like that. His mom is Absolute Good and his stepfather is Absolute Evil but they’re not predictable, mostly because the situation isn’t either.

I really liked the Greek mythology system as a backbone, instead of a world completely made up by the author, because it makes it harder to justify a des ex machina. I guess you could call that ironic, huh? But established outside mythology makes it harder for the author to break his own rules. Plus it’s funny to see how Riordan uses the real world and the mythology world to influence each other without taking liberties.

Long review short, I enjoyed this book a lot. It was fun, and fun is good. Fun is excellent.

My happy face.

1 comment:

  1. I had no idea that Sid and Nancy had a book exchange shelf. My next endeavor to Five Points (whenever that may be) might end with some new-old books. :D