The Percy Jackson Legacy

Look, we didn’t want to fall in love with half-bloods. But the captivating plot and relatable characters of the Percy Jackson books have stolen the hearts of many. With the first book being published in 2005, and almost thirty books across four series released after, the beloved characters have had adventures in which to leave a lasting impression. And they did. Rick Riordan created a universe for many to find comfort in and to learn from. For that reason the Percy Jackson books have a legacy that has shaped much of our generation.

With the books based off Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Norse mythology our generation has a large expanse of knowledge. The books follow the children of gods as they go on quests to become heroes, but the books also talk about heroes and monsters from ancient stories. This knowledge helps readers in English and history based classes by giving them much background information. They have also learned the morals of the stories giving them real world advice. The Percy Jackson books tell stories with the messages of determination, family, and bravery. There is as much to learn from these books as there is to learn from the mythology they reference.

As Rick Riordan began to publish more books, he began to diversify his characters. Riordan’s characters explore many different races, sexualities, genders, and characteristics; every reader can point to a character and say, “They are like me”, which is so important in literature. When a reader connects to a character on a personal level, that bond is stronger. They will be more likely to be invested in the book, but they are also more likely to take that character with them when the cover closes. Readers are able to draw on the strengths of the characters and help ease nerves by asking, “What would Alex Fierro do?” or “What would Annabeth Chase do?”. The Percy Jackson books show that no matter who you are, you can step up and be the hero.

These books also talk about fatal flaws, something most books do not cover. The characters deal with anger and grudges, extreme loyalty, hubris, and much more. This is important because it shows that no matter how invincible someone may seem, everyone has their flaws. But just as these character do not let their fatal flaws stop them, we don’t have to, either.

Percy Jackson came off the pages when the first two books were adapted in movies in 2010 and 2013. However, most fans consider these movies to be the worst book to movie adaptation, and the fandom has a collective opinion of “We don’t talk about the movies”. In 2017 a small cast performed the first show of “The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical”. The small run of the show was then released thorough studio recordings, and fans of the books fell in love with the rock musical. The show has begun their national tour earlier this year and is coming near Apex next month. If you want to go, make sure to get the tickets soon before they are gone!

The Percy Jackson books carry so much importance that it is difficult to remember these are middle grade novels. These books cover so many important topics that even adult books fail to talk about. These conversations are why literature is so valuable, to talk about and learn things happening in the world safely. Readers have the opportunities to go on quests alongside these characters without ever leaving their homes. You no longer have to wait for the gods to give you a quest; you just have to make your way to the library or bookstore.

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