When taught in a grade 3-5 school, The Lightning Thief was all the rage among the tween set and in the ten years since the first book, the series’ popularity has never waned. Having sold millions of copies worldwide, being on nationwide school reading lists nationwide, and inspired a major motion picture, what is it about Percy that everyone loves?
I know why we love the series (adventure, mythology, and great writing) but are our reasons for loving Percy Jackson and the Olympians the same as everyone else’s?
In honor of The Lightning Thief’s 10th anniversary, I queried friends on Facebook and here are to 10 reasons to love the internationally best-selling Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.
#1— There’s a bit of Percy in everyone
Protagonist Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork. He’s a typical kid that boys, girls, and even adults will identify with plus he has what everyone thinks is an overactive imagination. How else would you explain his pre-algebra teacher turning into a monster and trying to kill him on a field trip?
When Percy’s mom finds out about her son’s encounter with his teacher, she knows it’s time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he go to the one place he’ll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods on Long Island.
#3— Introduction to mythology
As a kid, I poured over D’Aulaires Book of Greek Mythology, memorizing each story of the Greek gods and goddesses but the Percy Jackson series presents mythology in a new way that draws kids into classic tales thanks to Percy’s time at Camp Half Blood. While at camp, Percy learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, God of the Sea, and a mystery unfolds. Together with his friends–one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena–Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld (a.k.a. recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods. A friend mentioned that her son loved the Greek mythology, mythical creatures, and magic!
#4— Kid-Friendly Tales of Empowerment
With a main character that kids identify with, adventure, mystery, and a new way of incorporating classic Greek mythology into a new series Beth Blecherman of TechMamas says that the Percy Jackson books are great kid-friendly fantasy adventure stories about empowerment of kids that feel different (but in the end find that they have special powers).
#5— Parents say they’re creative, engaging, and addictive in the best way
As parents, we want our kids to be reading great books that stir the imagination and chances are if your child picks up the first book, they’ll be hooked! Beth says the Percy Jackson series is “similar to many other stories but the writing is very creative and engaging.” So engaging that Samantha Fein (GarzaGirl) said that her son was “banned from reading Percy Jackson after ditching fourth grade twice to read the books.” Elizabeth Norton (PrayingforPink.com) told me that her 12 son used the books to hide from his sister! Whatever motivates kids to read works for me!
#6— A series that kids and parents can enjoy together
But Percy Jackson isn’t just for kids! They’re a great read for adults that makes them a perfect read-aloud story between kids and parents. A high school friend without kids even admitted that she loved the books!
#7— Motivates even the most reluctant readers
Nancy Horn from The Mama Maven said her son recently read the first book and has promised to read the next four this summer. “This is a kid who finally got interested in reading…He can lose himself in a book and I’m thrilled that this can happen for him.”
#8— Just as great as audio books
Heading on a road trip? Beth Blecherman suggests getting The Percy Jackson books on Audible saying, “they’re also fabulous!”
#9— Extend learning beyond the books
Free 10th Anniversary Percy Pack Activity Kit materials are perfect for new and existing Percy fans. With suggestions for games and food when hosting your own anniversary party and printables like a Percy Jackson Word Search, Labyrinth and Olympian Crossword Puzzle to test your knowledge, kids can extend the Percy fun beyond the pages of the book.
Enter to win your own box set of Percy Jackson and the Olympians valued at $35!
This post was written as part of an uncompensated partnership with Disney-Hyperion where I receive Percy related products for my participation. All opinions are my own. Affiliate links are included in this post.