Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Dyslexia, ADHD, I Must Be a Demigod!

Ok, I don't have ADHD, it's actually ADD, but that's not important.  I mean my whole life I thought I was half alien, when it turns out I must be a demigod!  Or maybe the daughter of a demigod.... hmmm I wonder who my dad's deity parent is?  Or maybe not....

If you are totally lost, then you haven't been sucked into the very popular Percy Jackson quintology by Rick Riordan.  I recently blazed through this series (in between Dresden books by Jim Butcher) - did I mention I'm on a reading binge?  Percy's been hailed as the next Harry Potter, and I don't think that's quite right, and his movie definitely didn't get treated with that much respect.  That doesn't mean it's not an amazing story concept, wonderful world, fun characters, and a read that if it were any more like eating candy would leave cavities of pleasure in the brain.

I've found myself reading lots of young adult literature this year, but that's not really a bad thing.  Maybe we don't need to challenge ourselves literarily with everything we read.  There is plenty of time to contemplate all the ways that human society is destined to implode upon itself.  Sometimes it's nice to kick back and watch a hero emerge while battling monsters and middle school.  The other fringe benefit of the Percy Jackson series in particular is the retelling of all those Greek stories you have buried in the back of your mind somewhere.  Sometimes the retelling is humorously similar, sometimes it's aggravatingly familiar yet drastically different.

To give you the summary, the Greek gods are still among us.  All their locations move with the power of the Western World, thus placing them firmly in the United States.  Hades is in LA, Mt Olympus above the Empire State Building (600th floor), etc.  Since the gods are still around, they're still getting into romantic entanglements with mortals resulting in demigod children.  Thanks to a prophesy of the Oracle of Delphi, the big three gods, Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades aren't supposed to engage in the demigod habit, which doesn't work out so well seeing as Percy is a son of Poseidon.  Basically, we follow Percy starting at age 12, as he learns he's a demigod, about his father, and as he learns to be a hero with the help of Camp Halfblood - a training ground for demigods.

As anticipated and inevitable as the conclusion of Percy Jackson and the Olympians is, I am really sad to not be waiting for the library to give me my go with the next book.  I'm going to miss Percy's clueless stumbling through Greek tales, only to be directed by fate and his friends to be a great hero.

I've had a lot of fun with Percy, I hope there are more books in this world.  I hope they are still cool when my daughter gets to that reading level in a couple years.

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