Thursday, October 16, 2014

Percy Jackson's Greek Gods--The Second Terrific Book of the Season

Hey, you truly rocking reader guys, you may remember that I said that I love this time of year because that's when the coolest books come out. As proof of how right I was, I offer as evidence Percy Jackson's Greek Gods by the incomparable Rick Riordan. This is one TERRIFIC book that guys everywhere will enjoy. If you're a Percy Jackson fan, like me, this is the book you MUST read! And if you're not (and it's hard to imagine anyone who's not a Percy Jackson fan), this is still the book you've gotta read. It will make you laugh, thrill and choke and shudder at some of the stuff those old Greek gods did.

Where to start? There's so much good stuff to say. Well, why do we love the Percy Jackson books so much? Because of the action and the adventure. Yet there's one thing more. The one thing that Mr. Riordan does better than anyone else--the humor! And that's what this book has LOTS and LOTS of! This book is LOL with capital L's. I Laughed completely out Loud while reading this thing. So will you! I mean, just look at some of the title chapters--"The Golden Age of Cannibalism"---"Athena Adopts a Handkerchief"---"Apollo Sings and Dances and Shoots People"--"Dionysus Conquers the World with a Refreshing Beverage." How great are those? And then you get into the stories of those old Greek myths with heaps of Percy's trademark humor. For instance, when Demeter, the goddess of agriculture disguises herself as an old woman and takes care of a mortal baby. "She sang him nursery songs from Mount Olympus, like 'The Itsy-Bitsy Satyr' and 'I'm a Little Cyclops.'" Or when Apollo goes to slay Python, the giant snake and says:

"Yo, snake!"

Python opened his eyes. "What do you want?"

"To sing you a song about my awesomeness."

"Oh, please, just kill me now."

"Okay!"  Apollo drew his bow and shot the snake between the eyes.

There are so many more examples. Just wait until you hear Athena and Arachne trash talk either other before the weaving contest. But there's more than just humor. We must remember that these old myths were stories. There are still reasons we tell them thousands of years later. They are still great stories. They still excite and move us. We want to find out what happens next. Take a look at the story of Typhoeus. Or the story of Persephone. And no one tells a story like Mr. Riordan. This book will keep your attention, make you laugh, make you thrill, make you disgusted (some of those gods were disgusting--more about that in a minute) or do all those things at the same time. I haven't enjoyed a Rick Riordan book this much since I first read The Lightning Thief these many years ago and a whole new world of enjoyment opened up for me. This is it, guys! Get to your local library and check one out.

BTW, did I mention the totally great illustrations by the fantastic John Rocco, the guy who's done the Percy Jackson book covers? Well, he has created the absolutely perfect pictures for this book. Drama, awsomeness, creepiness, more awesomeness. That's what you'll see in these illustrations.

OK, I do need to add a NOTE TO THE YOUNGER READER GUYS AND OR THE GROWNUPS. If you are a seven or eight or even a nine-year old or if you're the parent of one, this may not be the book for you. These old Greek myths dealt with some revolting stuff, like the stories dealing with the Titans and their encounters with the gods. And the gods themselves were pretty disgusting at times, willing to transform poor mortals into yucky things or put them in awful tortures for the pickiest reasons. And they spent most of their time chasing around for...well, you know. The brilliant Mr. Riordan presents all those stories entirely appropriately for older kids. I'd call them PG rated. If you are or have a younger reader guy, you might want a book such as D'Aulaire's Book of Greek Mythsa G-rated book and an oldie but goodie and maybe the best intro to Greek mythology for kids ever.

All that said, however, reading this book has been some of the most fun I've had all year and that's why it gets--

The Iron Guy Seal of Approval as One Terrific Book

(Not to mention it's a really big book and great for building up your muscles!)


Lisa Robles said...

I love Percy Jackson!


Ms. Yingling said...

I'm jealous! My copy came in a shipment and was grabbed up right away by an eager reader, so I will have to wait! My girls were read D'Aulaire's from birth, and it is a great idea for the younger reader. Glad to know it was well worth purchasing!

Cheriee Weichel said...

I've had this one on my radar for a while. I know a lot of boys and girls at our school will love me for getting it for the library!

Iron Guy Carl said...

Yes, Ms. Yingling, it was well worth purchasing. It's his best since The Lightning Thief. And to all of you, your kids will enjoy it. So will you!

Tracy Gentile said...

I'm the media coordinator at Lake Wylie Elementary and we just got this book at our book fair; I bought it for my fourth-grade son, who is a big Percy Jackson fan, and am thinking about putting it in the library. Thank you for posting this review. Nice to see Riordan's take on classic mythology.

Iron Guy Carl said...

Thanks, Tracy! Hey, would you ask your son to write a review?