- This article is about the book. For other uses, see The Lightning Thief (disambiguation).
|The Lightning Thief|
June 28, 2005
Percy Jackson is a twelve year old boy diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia, who has been expelled from every school he has ever attended. While he is in sixth grade on a field trip, his pre-algebra teacher, Mrs. Dodds, turns into a Fury, a mythical creature/demon known to mankind from Greek mythology, and tries to kill him. His other teacher, Mr. Brunner, charges in, and throws Percy a pen that changes into a sword when uncapped it. Percy kills the Fury in self-defense. For the rest of the year, everyone thinks Mrs. Dodds, replaced with Ms. Kerr, never existed, as they have been manipulated by the Mist. On his way home, three very old ladies, who turn out to be the Fates, cut a line of string, and his friend Grover tells him this is worse than it really seems. He explains to Percy the fact that the Fates are the ones who decide the lifespan of a being. The string in their hand is the lifeline of a person and when cut, it signifies the death. Percy is very frightened by this and assumes that the string of yarn that had just been cut off was his.
Going to Camp
On a vacation trip to Montauk with his mother, Grover Underwood, Percy's best friend at school, urgently tells Percy's mother that Percy must flee to a specific camp, Camp Half-Blood. Sally drives the two kids to camp using Gabe Ugliano's car. Inside the car, Percy discovers that his mother and Grover are familiar with one another; he also notices that Grover is a goat from waist down. As they travel closer to the camp, they are attacked by a Minotaur. While trapped inside the car, Sally then tells Percy to escape and run for the tree, but Percy disagrees and tells her that he isn't leaving her behind. Leaving her no choice, Sally helps Percy with Grover as they run for the pine tree. However, Percy's mom could no longer go further and continues to fight off the Minotaur, but it immediately grabs her. She dissolves into a golden shower of light. Seeing that, Percy grows angry and charges into the Minotaur to avoid further damaged. It did not go the way he planned, but he was able to grab its horn. Percy stabs kills it with the horn, and it dissolves into sand. He walks through camp with Grover before he collapses on the porch in front of a man and a girl. Percy wakes up a few days later. Percy finds out everything he learned about Greek mythology class from Mr. Brunner is true. He's is introduced to Mr. D, who is really Dionysus, and Mr. Brunner reveals himself to be the centaur Chiron. Chiron hands him over to a girl with blond hair and grey eyes named Annabeth, who took care of him while he was unconscious. They were interrupted by Clarisse, a girl from the Ares cabin, as she tries to shove his head in a toilet as part of the initiation ceremony, but the plan backfires as the water arcs over his head and onto her and her friends, pushing them out the bathroom.
|“|| Chiron: It is determined.|
Percy: My Father?
Percy prepares his new life as a demigod. During a Capture the Flag game, Ares campers attack him, all wanting revenge for what he had done to Clarisse. Clarisse stabs him with an electric spear but he steps in the creek and gains the upperhand. He breaks Clarisse's spear and defeats the other rivals. Just as he defeats all of the campers, Luke crosses the line and wins the game. Amidst he celebration, Annabeth notices Percy's wound as he stays in the water, which seems to be healing. She asks Percy to step out of the water and soon Percy feels weakened. Annabeth jumps to the conclusion of who his father may be. A hellhound, attacks Percy in surprise, wounding the demigod. The hellhound is killed and Annabeth shows Chiron that he heals in water. Percy is claimed as a son of Poseidon, through a hologram of green light, in the form of a trident. Poseidon had broken the oath he had taken with Hades and Zeus after World War II: not to have any more children, a prophecy given by the Oracle of Delphi, stating that a child of one of the Big Three gods (Poseidon, Zeus, and Hades) would make a decision on his/her sixteenth birthday that would either save or destroy Olympus.
Getting Ready for a Quest
|“|| You shall go west, and face the god who has turned.|
You shall find what was stolen, and see it safely returned.
–The Prophecy, given for the quest.
Percy is granted a quest to find Zeus' master bolt which Chiron believes Hades has stolen. However, Zeus discovers Poseidon's broken oath and believes Percy stole the bolt. Percy has ten days before summer solstice to find the symbol of power of the king of gods, and he is given magic shoes as a gift from Luke before leaving. However, Chiron tells him that it is a bad idea to use the shoes since Zeus might blast him out of the sky, so he gives them to Grover. Chiron hands over a pen to Percy, informing him that it is a gift from his father. When uncapped, a sword, called Riptide or Anaklusmos, appears. Percy, accompanied by Annabeth and Grover, travels to western Long Island leading them closer to the Underworld in Los Angeles.
Starting the Quest
After Percy, Annabeth, and Grover are driven into town, they take a bus into New Jersey. When they get on the bus, three old ladies get on with them. Percy recognizes one of them as Mrs. Dodds. The Furies, as they are called, attack and they fight before they escape to Aunty Em's Garden Gnome Emporium. After they are served food, Aunty Em want's to take a picture of them to use as models for her statues. However, she tries to turn them to stone instead of using them as models because she is Medusa. Percy cuts off her head, and they leave. They find a lost dog, return it, and get $200. They buy train tickets with that money. They get off at the Gateway Arch. When Percy is alone on the top, Echidna reveals herself, along with Chimera. Then Percy jumps into the Mississippi River, to get away and is on the news — in a bad way.
Going Further West
After Percy lands in the Mississippi River he discovers some of his powers which include breathing and staying dry underwater. A Nereid then appears and tells him to go to the ocean before he goes into the Underworld. Percy finds his friends, and they get back on the train and are taken to Denver. They get off, and go into a diner. Ares comes in, and tells them to get his shield at Waterland, and in turn, he would give them a ride west, and information about Percy's mom. They go to Waterland, and find out the ride was set up with a trap by Hephaestus. They get out, and go back to the diner, and Ares shows them a Kindness International truck. He also reveals that Percy's mother is not dead; instead, she has been taken as a hostage by Hades.
Once they reach Las Vegas, a bellhop from the Lotus Hotel and Casino invites them to come in. Immediately, without even having to pay for anything, Percy, Annabeth, and Grover are given a room. After they enjoy the perks of staying in such a luxurious suite, they decide to go down to the arcade. After a while of playing, Percy finds a boy, Darrin, who thinks the year is 1977. Percy asks a few more people what the year is, to which they answer 1985 and 1993. Percy finds Annabeth and Grover and they immediately leave the hotel. They are relieved to find out from a newspaper that it is still the same year. However, 5 days have already passed, leaving only one day to retrieve the lightning bolt.
Reaching the Underworld
They eventually make it to the ocean. Percy walks in, and gets a ride from a hammerhead shark to the Nereid. She gives him three pearls saying to use them when they were in great need. While searching for the entrance to the Underworld, they encounter Procrustes. He traps Annabeth and Grover using his signature technique — causing them to lie down on a bed while being stretched by ropes until they are exactly the same height of the bed — until Percy tricks him into lying down on one such bed. Procrustes is killed, and the trio proceed to DOA Recording Studios, the cover place for the gates to the Underworld. Then enter. There, Percy bribes Charon into letting them in. Once inside, they discover that the entrance to the Underworld proper is being guarded by Cerberus. Annabeth then plays with the giant dog by using a little red ball, giving Percy and Grover enough time to pass. They walk through the Fields of Asphodel and pass by the path to the pit of Tartarus. As they approach the entrance to Tartarus, Luke’s shoes try to pull Grover into it, but he manages to slip free. They manage to get to Hades' palace. Percy confronts Hades who believes that Percy stole the Master Bolt as well as his Helm of Darkness. Percy realizes that Ares has tricked him when he discovers the Master Bolt is in his backpack. He and his friends then use the pearls to flee from the Underworld without his mother as he was forced to leave her, thus fulfilling the line in the prophecy that states, "You shall fail to save what matters most in the end".
The pearls return Percy, Grover, and Annabeth back to the ocean. They reach the shore, meet Ares, and confront him. Percy then challenges him to a fight. He uses Riptide to battle Ares. Percy eventually stabs him in the heel and Ares starts to bleed ichor. He is about to kill Percy, when an evil force in the form of a dark aura convinces him to do otherwise. He then leaves, giving Percy the Helm of Darkness. Percy tosses it to the Furies, and they take it back to Hades.
Percy reaches New York City to give the lightning bolt to Zeus. He proceeds to the Empire State Building and reaches the top, where Olympus is currently located. Zeus accepts the bolt and Percy has a short talk with his father before returning to camp, where he learns that his mother is alive. He bumps into Luke, who reveals that he stole the bolt and helm for Kronos. Luke calls out a poisonous scorpion which stings and nearly kills Percy. Percy is unconscious after the attempt to kill him. Luke manages to escape and leaves Camp Half-Blood. Chiron cures Percy and they, along with Annabeth, discuss Luke's betrayal. The camp beads are awarded, and the bead for this year — Percy's first year — is a black bead painted with a green trident in the middle. Annabeth leaves Camp Half-Blood for the first time, to live with her dad, step-mother, and two half siblings. Percy then leaves to attend another school his mother found.
You shall go west, and face the god who has turned,
You shall find what was stolen, and see it safely returned,
You shall be betrayed by one who calls you a friend,
And you shall fail to save what matters most, in the end.
Unraveling of the Prophecy
- The group, Percy, Grover, and Annabeth, travel west to go and meet Hades, although the god who has turned is Ares.
- Percy later finds Zeus's lightning bolt in a backpack given to him by Ares. He returns it to Zeus, as well as Hades' Helm of Darkness, which was also in the possession of Ares.
- Luke, a son of Hermes whom Percy considered a friend, stole both Zeus's Lightning Bolt and Hades' Helm of Darkness, and later tries to kill Percy, ultimately betraying him.
- In the end, Percy fails to save his mother from the Underworld, though she is given back when Percy returns Hades' Helm of Darkness.
- I Accidentally Vaporize My Pre-Algebra Teacher
- Three Old Ladies Knit the Socks of Death
- Grover Unexpectedly Loses his Pants
- My Mother Teaches Me Bullfighting
- I Play Pinochle with a Horse
- I Become Supreme Lord of the Bathroom
- My Dinner Goes Up in Smoke
- We Capture a Flag
- I Am Offered a Quest
- I Ruin a Perfectly Good Bus
- We Visit the Garden Gnome Emporium
- We Get Advice from a Poodle
- I Plunge to My Death
- I Become a Known Fugitive
- A God Buys Us Cheeseburgers
- We Take a Zebra to Vegas
- We Shop for Water Beds
- Annabeth Does Obedience School
- We Find Out the Truth, Sort Of
- I Battle My Jerk Relative
- I Settle My Tab
- The Prophecy Comes True
- (Preview of The Sea of Monsters)
I Kiss Something Ugly
- Percy Jackson – The main character and a son of Poseidon.
- Annabeth Chase – A friend of Percy's and a daughter of Athena.
- Grover Underwood – A Satyr and a friend of Percy's, is also Percy's protector.
- Clarisse La Rue – A daughter of Ares and the leader of her cabin. She holds a grudge against Percy for how he embarrassed her and her father.
- Luke Castellan – A son of Hermes and a traitor when he turns on Percy at the end.
- Nancy Bobofit – One of the bullies at Yancy Academy and greatly disliked by Percy.
- Gabe Ugliano – Sally's husband that she married to cover up Percy's half-blood scent with his stench.
- Sally Jackson – Percy's mother. Percy said that she can see through the Mist better than him. She married Gabe Ugliano, who's character is certainly disliked by Percy.
Argus – the security guard for Camp Half-Blood. He has blue eyes all over his body, and usually when heroes need to go on quests, he would drive them in the white van to a certain place, then head back to camp.
- Dionysus – God of wine and ritual madness. Goes by "Mr. D". He is the Director of Camp Half-Blood and despises Percy.
- Poseidon – God of the Seas, Father of Horses, and Percy's Father. One of The Big Three.
- Ares – God of War, and Clarisse's father.
- Hades – God and Ruler of the Underworld. One of The Big Three.
- Zeus – God of the Sky, King and Ruler of the Gods and Heavens. He is the father of Thalia Grace, who was turned into the pine tree that enforces the magical barrier of camp when she had fallen in battle on top of Half Blood Hill. One of The Big Three.
- Kronos – Appears as a voice in Percy's many nightmares throughout the book. Kronos tries to pull Grover, Annabeth, and Percy into the pit by the cursed shoes that Luke had given them so he could get the Master Bolt.
The Lightning Thief has been released in a Deluxe Edition version. The edition contains eight full-color plates by John Rocco, and comes with an elegant slipcase with a ribbon bookmark, rough edges, and a cloth cover.
- In this book, Percy refers to other gods, or other gods refer to him by family names. Hades was repeatedly called uncle, Poseidon refers to Zeus as Percy's uncle, and Ares calls Percy his cousin. This however is not continued in the rest of the books, as Poseidon is the only god Percy refers to with a family name (calling him his father or dad).
- I Kiss Something Ugly is one of the deleted chapters in The Lightning Thief. It was later presented on Rick Riordan's Facebook.
- Mark Twain Award 2008 (Missouri Association of School Librarians)
- Bluebonnet Award Nominee (Texas Library Association)
- Askews Torchlight Award (UK)
- Best of the Best Book List (Chicago Public Library)
- Top Shelf Fiction List (Voice of Youth Advocates)
- Notable Book (American Library Association)
- Best Book for Young Adults (Young Adult Library Services Association)
- Red House Children's Book Award Winner (UK)
- Choice Award; Notable Children's Book (Cooperative Children's Book Center)
- National Council for Teachers of English, Publishers Weekly National Children's Bestseller
- Warwickshire Book Award Winner (UK)
- Beehive Award Winner 2006 (Children's Literature Association of Utah)
- Maine Student Book of The Stupids
- ↑ pg. 2 "See, bad things happen to me on field trips
- ↑ pg. 12 "Die, honey!"
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/PercyJackson?sk=app_252856264773521