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Books By Rick Riordan - Author
A World Book Day Author 2019
Rick Riordan is an award-winning mystery writer. He lives in Boston with his wife and two sons. Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, Rick's first novel featuring the heroic young demigod, was the overall winner of the Red House Children's Book Award in 2006 and is now a blockbuster film franchise, starring Logan Lerman.
Rick Riordan is also the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Percy Jackson and the Olympians series for children and the multi-award-winning Tres Navarre mystery series for adults.
For fifteen years, Rick taught English and history at public and private middle schools in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Texas, USA. In 2002, Saint Mary’s Hall honored him with the school’s first Master Teacher Award.
His adult fiction has won the top three national awards in the mystery genre – the Edgar, the Anthony and the Shamus. His short fiction has appeared in Mary Higgins Clark Mystery Magazine and Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine.
His Percy Jackson series features a twelve-year-old dyslexic boy who discovers he is the modern-day son of a Greek god. The Lightning Thief was a New York Times Notable Book for 2005 and winner of the Red House Children's Book Award 2006. Film rights were purchased by Twentieth Century Fox and a feature film version was released in 2010. The Sea of Monsters was a Child Magazine Best Book for Children for 2006 and a Publishers Weekly and BookSense national bestseller. The third title, The Titan’s Curse, made the series a #1 New York Times bestseller, and the most recent title, The Battle of the Labyrinth, had a first printing of one million copies.
Rick Riordan now writes full-time. He lives in San Antonio with his wife and two sons.
My son Haley asked me to tell him some bedtime stories about the Greek gods and heroes. I had taught Greek myths for many years at the middle school level, so I was glad to comply. When I ran out of myths, he was disappointed and asked me if I could make up something new with the same characters. I thought about it for a few minutes. Then I remembered a creative writing project I used to do with my sixth graders — I would let them create their own demigod hero, the son or daughter of any god they wanted, and have them describe a Greek-style quest for that hero. Off the top of my head, I made up Percy Jackson and told Haley all about his quest to recover Zeus’ lightning bolt in modern day America. It took about three nights to tell the whole story, and when I was done, Haley told me I should write it out as a book. I had a lot to do already, but I somehow found the time to write the first Percy Jackson book over the next year. I just really enjoyed writing it. The story was such fun, and so different from my adult fiction, that I found myself spending a lot of time on it. Now, I’m sure glad I did!
• The Lightning Thief deals with magic and the Greek gods. Are you worried about censorship?
In Western Civilization, we’ve always had an uneasy mix between Classical mythology and Judeo-Christian values. As a culture, we tend to believe in one God, but we also grow up steeped in these wonderful old stories about the Olympians. As long as we recognize them as stories that are part of our heritage and long-since stopped being any kind of serious religion, I don’t see the harm in learning mythology. In fact, I think you have to know Greek myths to understand where our modern culture came from. It’s part of being an educated member of society. The Lightning Thief explores Greek mythology in a modern setting, but it does so as a humorous work of fantasy. I’m certainly not interested in changing or contradicting anyone’s religious beliefs. Early in the book, the character Chiron makes a distinction between God, capital-G, the creator of the universe, and the Greek gods (lower-case g). Chiron says he doesn’t want to delve into the issue of God, but he has no qualms about discussing the Olympians because they are a “much smaller matter.” The gods of Olympus are archetypes. They are deeply embedded in and inseparable from Western thought. The book pays tribute to the legacy of Olympus as one of the roots of our culture.
• Have you ever been to Greece or Italy, or are you planning to travel there?
Yes, I’ve been to both Italy and Greece, but only after I finished the Percy Jackson series, which is ironic. One doesn’t need to travel there, however, to appreciate the stories from mythology. Those are quite universal.