March 31, 2016

Author Spotlight: Rick Riordan


Welcome to Author Spotlight, where I talk about my favorite authors. I'll cover the author, their books, and what I enjoy about their work. Today I chose Rick Riordan, one of my top authors.

Biography

Rick Riordan was born as Richard Russell Riordan, Jr. and is 51 years old. Both of his parents taught and he followed in their footsteps, teaching English and history. While in college he was a camp councilor, which he says gave him the idea for Camp Half-Blood. Rick started writing in middle school. He has a wife and two sons.

His oldest son has dyslexia and ADHD. That is what inspired him to write a story whose hero had those characteristics. It started out as a bedtime story. Eventually he wrote it down and it became wildly popular.

Books

Rick Riordan is most famous for his Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. But if you didn't know, here's a list of all his books.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians- A five book series that introduces us to Percy, the son of Poseidon. He discovers the Greek gods are alive and so are all the monsters that come out of the Greek myths. He and his friends must save the world from the Titans.

The Heroes of Olympus- Our journey with Percy continues, but now it has a whole new cast of characters- part Greek, part Roman. In five new books, the two former enemies must unite to defeat Gaea.

Percy Jackson's Greek Gods- Percy tells us all about the twelve major Greek gods. But he tells it using modern language and that make it funny.

Percy Jackson's Greek Heroes- The same as the Greek gods, but about- you guessed it- Greek heroes. You are so smart. I like it because it includes some girls.

Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard- Magnus is the cousin of Annabeth from the Percy Jacksons. Only he is the child of a Norse god and he's dead most of the book. You've got to read it to understand. I don't know how many books this will have but it will probably be between three and five.

The Kane Chronicles- This series is about the Egyptian gods and follows Carter and Sadie Kane. Their parents are gods and they're magicians. This series has three books. Rick has recently written some short stories where the Kanes meet Percy and Annabeth.

Tres Navarre- Rick's series of mysteries for adults. I have never read them (though I'm thinking about it) and don't know anything about them.

The 39 Clues: The Maze of Bones- One of the many 39 clues books. The first one in fact. Amy and Dan are part of a contest to collect the 39 clues for a serum that will turn out to have deadly side affects.

The Trials of Apollo- His newest series about Apollo. He is cast out of Olympus by Zeus and turns into a human. I assume he must find a way to return to Olympus, perhaps by doing something. It sounds a bit like the plot of the first Thor movie.

What I Enjoy About His Work

The thing I most enjoy about his books, particularly the Percy Jackson's and Magnus Chase's, is the humor. No matter how dark things get, they're willing to crack a joke or make a witty comment. He gives humorous takes on many things that we don't see. You've got to read them to see it. (Oh, the dam jokes. Or Moose Pass Gas.)

I also love how he shows kids mythology without being dry and boring. He brings fresh life to the stories by bringing them to a modern setting. You don't realize how many of the adventures are real myths until you read the stories. Then you go, wow, I didn't realize that was a myth. I especially felt this way with the Magnus Chase books, since I'm less familiar with the Norse myths.

Do you like Rick Riordan? What do you like most about his work?

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