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Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

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Stephanie Kefalas

on 12 June 2014

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Transcript of Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief

By: Rick Riordan
Summary
Characters
Percy Jackson
Annabeth Chase
Grover Underwood
Perceus "Percy" Jackson is the
main character of the book, as well as
the narrator. He was born August 18th, 1993. Percy is the son of the God, Poseidon and mortal, Sally Jackson. Poseidon abandoned Percy when he was a baby to protect him, leaving his mom to get remarried to an awful man named Gabe Ugliano, whom Percy called "Smelly Gabe". Throughout his younger years, strange things would always happen to him, resulting in him being expelled from many schools.
Annabeth is a Greek demigod, daughter of the Godess, Athena and mortal, Frederick Chase. She was born on July 12, 1993. Since she's a demigod, her family was always getting attacked by monsters, but her step-mom never believed her and thought she was a freak. As a result, Annabeth ran away from home at the age of 7. She fought her way to Camp Half-Blood, along with Grover, Luke, and Thalia, making her one of the first campers there.
Is this an effective novel for teenagers?
Grover is a satyr and Lord of the
wild. His job being a satyr is to find
half-bloods and bring them safely to
Camp Half-Blood. Grover's history before coming across Luke, Annabeth and Thalia are unknown. When he found them, he tried to bring them all
safely to the camp, but Thalia didn't make it. Later on, Grover was assigned to protect Percy, and became friends with him at one of his boarding schools. When things got bag, Grover also brought Percy to
the camp.
12 year old Percy Jackson was always getting in trouble and always felt like he was different or didn't belong. It wasn't until one of teachers, Mrs. Dodds turned into a monster in front of his eyes, did he realize something was up. After this event, Percy was taken to Camp Half-Blood, which is a camp for kids like him that protects them from monsters. There, he learned that he's a half-blood: half-human, half-god. During his stay at the camp, he met friends Annabeth, a half-blood, and Grover, a satyr. He also learns that his father is Poseidon, God of the sea. He was just getting comfortable at the camp, when he was accused of stealing Zeus' master bolt. Percy is told that he needs to return the lightning bolt by the summer solstice, or there would be war. Even though he is innocent, Percy along with Grover and Annabeth set out on a quest to retrieve the lightning bolt. There immediate thoughts were that Hades had the lightning bolt, so they started their journey to the Underworld. Along the way, they faced many obstacles, for example, batting vicious monsters like Medusa, being tricked by the God of war, Ares, nearly losing their memories in an enchanted Vegas casino, almost being stretched to death, and more. When the finally reach the Underworld, they learn that Hades does not have the lightning bolt, and something else has been stolen from him, the helm of darkness, which he accuses Percy of stealing. To make things worse, while they were talking, the master bolt magically appears in Percy's backpack that was given to him by Ares. Escaping Hades' wrath, Percy, Annabeth and Grover encounter Ares, who admits to stealing both the master bolt and the helm. Percy and Ares battle it out, and Percy wounds Ares, winning the helm of darkness. Percy and his friends return the helm of darkness to Hades and the master bolt to Zeus, where Percy meets his father. They then return to Camp Half- Blood, where Percy has a great time living the life of a hero. One day at the camp, Luke, another camper, lures Percy into the woods. Luke confesses to being the original thief of the master bolt and helm, and that he serves Kronos. Then, he vanishes, leaving a deadly scorpion to sting Percy. He nearly dies, but is rescued by wood nymphs who bring him to safety. After he is healed, Percy decides to spend his seventh-grade year at home, with his mother.
Yes, this is an effective novel for teenagers. Me being a teen, I find it very relatable and effective for teens. The author wrote the book for a teenage audience, and in my opinion he has succeeded in doing so. This can be supported with the proof of the following elements: character, point of view, and literary devices. The following will demonstrate how these elements support my opinion and how they are effective.
Was a character relatable? Realistic?
Percy Jackson, the main character is a character that I found really relatable. First of all, his character is about my age, so he has to face many of the same obstacles. The book begins with Percy at Yancy Academy, a boarding school for troubled kids. Percy explains how he isn’t the most popular kid and how he has a miserable life. I think that many other teenagers can relate to that. It is believed that adolescence is the time when teenagers form their personal identities. It’s the time when teens feel a desire to feel important in their peer groups and enjoy social acceptance. For Percy, he only has one friend, Grover, and is always feeling like he doesn’t belong or that he’s different. Other teenagers can relate to that because many go through the same or similar feelings. I think that almost every teenager has at least once felt like they didn’t belong or had a lack in self-confidence. But, school isn’t the only environment where these emotions could develop.
Percy also has to face problems at home. The summer after sixth grade, Percy returns home from boarding school, and his miserable life continues. There, he has to face his disrespectful, abusive, and cruel stepfather Gabe Ugliano, or as Percy likes to call him, Smelly Gabe. His mother is the nicest, most caring person he knows, and Percy hates that she isn’t treated right. With these problems happening at home, Percy is forced to take initiative and grow up faster, as he faces what the world is actually like. I’m sure that many other teenagers have to go through similar situations every day, so they can find this really relatable. I know that I can relate to this since my parents are divorced. At a younger age, it made me grow up faster and lead me to believe that the world isn’t perfect. The same thing goes for Percy as he learns just how cruel the world can be.
Around the middle of the book, Percy is told that he needs to go on a quest to retrieve the lightning bolt. This puts a big weight on his shoulders, because he only has ten days to do it, and if he fails it will start a grand war between the Gods, putting the whole world in chaos. I’m sure that other teenagers don’t have to go through anything like that, but it’s still relatable in other situations. Many pressures are put on teenagers all the time, and sometimes they can feel like the world will end if they don’t get it done. A lot of times, when many people are counting on me, I know that I need to get whatever it is done, or else I’m not just failing myself, but other people to. These situations don’t have to be life threatening, but they can also be something simple, such as the pressure of getting into a dream school. Percy Jackson has to go through a much more serious situation, but the emotions with the situations are relatable.
All these situations also support that the characters in the book are realistic. Percy Jackson goes through many obstacles, dealing with bullies, a cruel stepfather and immense pressure. As I already said, these are situations that many teenagers go through every day. Also, many of these events prove that the world isn’t always perfect and that even nice people are stuck with cruel lives. For example, with Percy’s mother, Sally. She is extremely kind, but is stuck with a cruel life. When she was younger, all her family died, leaving her to work all through high school to get enough money for a good college. Later on in her life, after Percy’s dad left, she married Gabe Ugliano, who never treated her right. This is realistic because instead of the book giving an idea of a perfect life, like in some books, it demonstrates real-life situations, which many other people can relate to.
How does the author develop the characters?
The author develops the characters of the book throughout many events and situations. Percy Jackson’s character develops greatly throughout the story. He starts out with being a troubled kid that bullies pick on. He felt like he didn’t belong and that he was different. But, by the end of the story he was known as a hero, and he felt like he belonged. His character first started developing when he found out he was a demi-god, and that there were a lot more people like him. It made him realize that he actually does belong and that he wasn’t the only one that was different. This gave him a bit of self-confidence. He gained more self-confidence through all of his battles. The first time, he was training with Luke, who is known as the best swordsman at camp Half-Blood. It was Percy’s first time handling a sword, and he unexpectedly knocked Luke’s sword out of his hands. Other battles, for example with Medusa, Ares, and other monsters made him gain self-confidence and made him feel good about himself. The last event that developed his character was when he saved the world by returning the lightning bolt to Zeus from the thief. After that, he was known as a great hero, and that made him feel really good about himself.
Point of View
Quotes
Quote
Literary Devices
There are many literary devices used throughout the Lightning Thief. Literary devices make the story more interesting, fun to read and well developed. They add depth to the writing, making the book enjoyable. Some examples of literary devices used in the Lightning Thief are imagery, foreshadowing, symbolism, irony, and more.
What are some literary devices used and how effective are they?
What are some literary devices used and how effective are they?
Conclusion
As my argument proves, Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief is clearly effective for teenagers. The characters are easy to relate to, and the text uses certain elements that interest teens. It's clear that the author was writing the book for a teenage audience, and he did a good job of demonstrating it.
Presentation by: Stephanie Kefalas
The book was written in Percy Jackson's point of vue. This made sense since he is the main character of the book, meaning everything occuring are events of his life. Having the book written in his perspective makes it easier to understand the book and Percy himself because you will always know thoughts and feelings. While certain events occur, I know what Percy is going through, as he describes it through his thoughts. This contributes to the effectiveness of the novel because first of all it makes it a lot easier to understand. Since, the book is based on his story, it would be harder to tell it if the book was written in another character's perspective or in third person. With it in Percy's perspective, you know more about his life, his feelings/emotions, about his personality, and you always know what he's thinking. This is effective because it makes the book more interesting by adding much more detail. A lot of the text in the book consists of Percy's inner thoughts, other than dialogue or narration. This includes a lot of information about what's happening, that make people want to read more. Having it in first person makes it an effective novel for teenagers. This is because the reader feels like the character's best friend, since it feels like he's talking to you. In fact, the view point character, Percy will tell the readers things that he wouldn't tell his best friend in the book. Since Percy is around the around the age of most teenagers reading, with having the book in his point of view, it makes teenagers relate to him easier. Since you always know what he's thinking, you can easily make connections and relate to him.
Reference List
"My name is Percy Jackson. I'm twelve years old. Until a few months ago, I was a boarding student at Yancy Academy, a private school for troubled kids in upstate New York. Am I a troubled kid? Yeah. You could say that. I could start at any point in my short miserable life to prove it-" (Riordan 1-2)

This quote proves my argument that Percy Jackson is a relatable character. He's saying that he's a troubled kid and that he has a miserable life. As I already mentioned, teenagers can relate to this because they go through similar situations where the feel as if they don't belong or like their life sucks.

"Her name is Sally Jackson and she's the best person in the world, which just proves my theory that the best people have the rottenest luck." (Riordan 29)


In this quote, Percy is talking about his mother and referring to how she lost all her family then later got married to a man who doesn't treat her right. This proves my point that the characters in the book are realistic. Sally Jackson's character is realistic because in real life, everything has flaws and bad things happen to good people. A lot of good people in real life have horrible lives. So, the author gave Sally a rotten life to make it realistic.

"We were the first heroes to return alive to Half-Blood Hill since Luke, so of course everybody treated us as if we'd won some reality-TV contest." (Riordan 354)


In this quote, Percy is referring to him, Grover, and Annabeth return from his quest to retrieve the lightning bolt. This proves that his character has developed because before he didn't feel as if he belonged and only had one friend, but in this quote, a whole bunch of campers that are half-bloods just like him are looking up to him. He realized that he actually does belong and became much more confident.
“I'd love to tell you I had some deep revelation on my way down, that I came to terms with my own mortality, laughed in the face of death, et cetera. The truth? My only thought was: Aaaaggghhhhh!” (Riordan 212)


This quote is thought by Percy when he is falling 630 feet from the top of the Gateway Arch. This proves my point that having the book in Percy's perspective helps the reader know more about the character's personality. With this quote, I can tell that Percy Jackson has a great sense of humour, since he is thinking that when he thinks he's about to die. If this scene was in third person or another perspective, all that would of been said was that Percy was falling. The reader wouldn't of got that piece of information that demonstrates his personality.
Foreshadowing:

In the book, there are many examples of foreshadowing. One example occurs at Camp Half-Blood between Percy and Luke. Percy is telling Luke that he doesn't belong there, as he doesn't even believe in the Gods and Luke bitterly responds by saying it doesn't get better even after you start believing in them. This is foreshadowing because here Luke is giving a hint of his hatred of the Gods, and then later in the book we find out that he serves Kronos, so he stole the lightning bolt and the helm of darkness to start a war between the Gods. This is effective because it clues you onto the twist, without completely giving it away. After that part of the book is read, it makes the reader curious about Luke and makes them want to read more.

"I don't belong here," I said. "I don't even believe in the Gods."
"Yeah," he said. "That's how we all started. Once you do start believing in them? I doesn't get any easier.
The bitterness in his voice surprised me, because Luke seemed like a pretty easygoing guy. He looked like he could handle just about anything." (Riordan 100)
Situational irony:
In the book, there are also many examples of irony. One example occurs near the end of the book, at his mom's apartment. Percy has Medusa's head in a box and asks his mom if she wants him to get rid of Smelly Gabe for her. This is irony because Medusa tried to turn Percy into a statue early in the book, but Percy cut off her head. Instead of getting rid of it, Percy wants to use it against Gabe. This is effective because it makes Percy's character and the overall story much more interesting. It demonstrates that Percy's character isn't perfect, and is capable of making bad decisions. Even though everybody wants Gabe gone, turning him into a statue is not the way to go. Since this makes the book more interesting, it makes the reader want to continue reading.

"I wanted to slice that package open, plop it on the poker table, and take out what was inside. I could start my very own statue garden, right there in the living room. That's what the Greek heroes would do in the stories, I thought. That's what Gabe deserves." (Riordan 351)
Shmoop Editorial Team. "Percy Jackson in The Lightning Thief." Shmoop.com. Shmoop University, Inc., 11 Nov. 2008. Web. 8 June 2014. <http://www.shmoop.com/percy-jackson-lightning-thief/percy-jackson-character.html>.
The Lightning Thief - Percy Jackson: The Online World of Rick Riordan." The Lightning Thief - Percy Jackson: The Online World of Rick Riordan. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 June 2014. <http://www.rickriordan.com/my-books/percy-jackson/percy-jackson-olympians/lightning-thief.aspx>.
"Percy Jackson." Camp Half-Blood Wiki. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 June 2014. <http://camphalfblood.wikia.com/wiki/Percy_Jackson
Riordan, Rick.
The Lightning Thief.
New York: Hyperion Books, 2005. Print.
Map of Camp Half-Blood
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