Synopsis of "Percy Jackson" Book 1

by Shawn Lealos

Rick Riordan wrote "Percy Jackson and the Olympians," a young adult fantasy series surrounding the lives of children of classical Greek Gods. Percy Jackson's father is Poseidon, god of the sea, and in the first book in the series, "The Lightning Thief," Jackson discovers his lineage and the powers he possesses. Hollywood adapted the book into a movie but changed many plot points from the original story.

Percy in the Real World

In the real world, Percy Jackson has no idea he is special, much less the son of a god. His mother knows Percy is special and marries a man who smells bad in order to protect Percy from the enemies of the gods sensing him. Unfortunately, this man mistreats Percy and his mother. Percy also has trouble in school because doctors believe he suffers from ADHD and dyslexia, although those theories are misdiagnosed and are effects of a demigod living among humans. Finally, when one of his teachers turns into a monster and attacks Percy on a field trip, Percy Jackson learns that his life is far from normal.

Heading to Camp

Percy Jackson discovers his best friend Grover is a satyr, which is like a half-human/half-goat creature sent to watch over Percy. The two head off for Camp Half-Blood, a camp where spells keep the children of the gods safe while the kids learn how to use their powers. It is here that Percy meets the third friend in his circle, a girl named Annabeth, the daughter of Athena. The three friends set off to find the missing master bolt of Zeus, which some believe Hades has stolen.

Meet the God of War (Spoilers)

One of the big changes from the book to the movie: Ares stole Hades' helm in the book, but Ares barely appears in the film and the filmmakers only use him in a cameo. In the books, Ares proves to be one of the antagonists and sends the three kids into Hades' realm where the bad guys trick Percy into appearing to be the lightning thief. Ares returns the helm to Hades through Percy, and Percy returns the bolt to Zeus.

The Final Battle (Spoilers)

The end of the book finally reveals the main enemy of Percy Jackson and the Greek gods. One of his fellow students at Camp Half Blood, Luke, betrays the Greek gods in the name of Kronos and the Titans, the parents of the current gods and the children of the giants. The Titans want their rule back, and Luke believes by starting a war between the gods, he can help free the Titans from their prison. Luckily, Percy defeats Luke, and everyone moves on to the next chapter of their lives.


About the Author

Shawn Lealos has been writing professionally since 1996. His articles have appeared in magazines such as Inside Sports and on websites such as He works as a film critic and is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle. Lealos received a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from the Gaylord School of Journalism at the University of Oklahoma in 2000.

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