Written By Rick Riordan
Adapted By Robert Venditti
Art By Attila Futaki
Following in the throes of Harry Potter, the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan soared to popularity. Instead of wizards, Riordan turned to the demigod descendents of Roman and Greek gods in modern day America. The demigods don’t quite fit in with their mortal counterparts, not only due to learning disabilities, but also because they possess powers and have mythical monsters chasing them. They find refuge in Camp Halfblood, a training ground and safe haven for the kids, run by Chiron the Centaur. The hero, Percy Jackson son of Poseidon ,has dealt with his share of monsters and quests, but a prophecy hinted at in the previous books calls him to action again. The titan Cronus has literally been rumbling about coming back from his exile to conquer the world and dethrone Zeus. The Olympian gods have been arguing about going to war. Artemis has been kidnapped and her swing vote could mean the difference between life and death. Percy teams up with his friends Annabeth and Thalia to save Artemis and prevent the prophecy from happening.
The Percy Jackson series is noted as a riveting adventure that combines modern day story telling with the myths of the past. For all its strengths, it possesses as many flaws. The strongest point are the characters and their relationships. Percy has numerous empathic flaws, that by book three he is learning how to overcome with his own inner talents and friendship. Despite many setbacks, including not being chosen for the quest, he finds ways to combat the threatening Chronus and his allies. Book three’s low points are the plot. The Percy Jackson books are packed with small details, much like the original myths, that only make logical sense when explained in full. Robert Venditti had to downsize a 352 page novel into 128 pages, most of which is pictures. It is a set up for one or more things to be lost. Venditti, though, faced the challenge by hitting the main points and weaving a followable comic script. Had he been given more pages, the adaptation could have been better.
The art holds up the narrative with pleasing coloring and backgrounds. The characters are a bit of mish-mash. It’s difficult to distinguish who is who and it’s even hard to figure out if one character is a girl or boy. The gods are an even bigger challenge. How do you depict them while living up the legend? Fitaki succeeds there with humorous designs.
It’s not perfect, but it lives up to the Percy Jackson popularity