In 2005, the first Percy Jackson book, the Lightning Thief, was published, soon became the most popular book. nowadays, the Percy Jackson series, plus the two series that came after it, is still some of the most loved stories, and the latest book, Blood of Olympus is one of the most wanted book ever. Though, personally, I don’t like Percy Jackson stories that much, I made an effort to understand why it so popular, and discover the reasons for my dislike for Percy Jackson.
Why is Percy Jackson so liked by kids? A lot of people says it is the Greek mythology. But I think it’s because though Greek mythology takes place in the past, Rick Riordan’s stories take place in the present. It includes many things that kids are familiar with and gives the readers an interesting view at the Percy Jackson world. The modern language Rick Riordan uses also makes the stories a lot more likable. It takes the stories closer to the readers than any other stories. Instead of taking the readers to another world, the stories fit comfortably into the readers’ world. The characters themselves also use languages that many kids today uses, with a lot of sarcasm. The entire story is seen through teenagers’ eyes, and makes the readers more fond of the characters. Occasionally, a modern device shows up, like an iPad, something most older stories don’t have, but it an everyday thing for the readers. Moving the entire setting to a well-known country and make the stories more popular. Like putting Olympus on top of the Empire Building in New York, and sticking the Underworld entrance in Los Angeles. He also changed the myths, so they won’t be completely boring and monotone, such as making Daedalus three thousand years old. The gods, their enemies, and the demigods also have very distinct personalities. Sometimes the personalities are somewhat absurd, yet amusing. Like the ballet loving giant that lives in the sewers of Rome.
Why don’t I like Percy Jackson? One of the reason is that, like many stories, the minor characters have to die for the major characters. But in this case, it seems more pronounced. Bob, the Titan, and Damasen the giant both sacrificed themselves to save Percy Jackson and his girlfriend, though neither Bob nor Damasen owe Percy and Annabeth anything. To make matter worse, Bob and Damasen both wanted to be free and “see the sun and stars again,” something that both haven’t done in a long time. They could have easily escaped their fate, but Rick Riordan doomed them. Of course, if Bob, or Damasen haven’t died, Percy would have gotten away too easily, but at least, one of them could have survive, and Percy and Annabeth could have suffered more casualties.
Also, Rick Riordan could have made the characters more life-like, and think more like a normal person, and not winning simply by sheer luck. A few hits on a monster’s head on it’s dead. Sure, if every monster’s battle is long-winded, it will not be extremely boring story to read, but there could be a lot fighting and closer calls and the hero or heroine could be the one finally killing the major monster.
These are just my opinions, and I hope that I have not insulted you if you are a Percy Jackson lover, but only gave you another view to look upon.