The Lightning Thief
by Rick Riordan
Family Quotes in The Lightning Thief
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
If you're reading this because you think you might be [a half-blood], my advice is: close this book right now. Believe whatever lie your mom or dad told you about your birth, and try to lead a normal life. (1.2)
From page one of The Lightning Thief, Percy introduces the idea that our parents might be lying to us. He makes it sound so obvious and so natural that our parents would be lying to us. His parents have been lying to him for twelve years of his life. Family throughout this story is closely associated with lying.
I hadn't seen her since Christmas. I wanted so bad to jump in a taxi and head home. She'd hug me and be glad to see me, but she'd be disappointed too. She'd send me right back to Yancy, remind me that I had to try harder, even if this was my sixth school in six years and I was probably going to be kicked out again. I wouldn't be able to stand that sad look she'd give me. (1.79)
Percy's family (his mom) is what keeps him strong and what gives him a reason for trying. Sally Jackson loves him unconditionally, but she also makes sure that his life has structure and discipline and that he learns. In retrospect (having finished reading The Lightning Thief), what is Sally really trying to do in sending Percy away to school?
Her own parents died in a plane crash when she was five, and she was raised by an uncle who didn't care much about her. She wanted to be a novelist, so she spent high school working to save enough money for a college with a good creative-writing program. Then, her uncle got cancer, and she had to quite school her senior year to take care of him. After he died, she was left with no money, no family, and no diploma. (3.6)
Family seems to have caused more obstacles for Sally Jackson than opportunity. Family has prevented her dreams from happening. It is almost a destructive force in her life.