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Themes

Little Words, Big Ideas

Identity

The Lightning Thief is all about identity and about discovering identity. At the beginning of our narrator's tale, Percy Jackson doesn't yet know who his father is or that he has any special powers...

Versions of Reality

The Lightning Thief looks at two co-existing worlds: the mortal world (the world as we know it) and the immortal world (the world of the gods). Our narrator learns that there are different versions...

Isolation

Isolation leads to anger, hatred, and violence in The Lightning Thief. In the beginning, we learn that our narrator, Percy, is a lonely dude. He's often kicked out of schools because he's not "norm...

Love

Amid battles with venomous monsters and angry gods, one thing becomes perfectly clear about Percy Jackson: he loves his mom more than anything. It is this love that keeps Percy strong, that motivat...

Family

Family can be both a destructive and creative force in this novel, but no matter what, it's really important to gods, demi-gods, and mortals alike. The Greek gods are all related to each other, and...

Traditions and Customs

The Lightning Thief is based on the idea that the Ancient Greek gods and goddesses are still alive and still ruling the earth, sea, and sky. Mount Olympus, the home of the gods, follows the heart o...

Language and Communication

The Lightning Thief teaches us that there are more ways of communicating and of using language than one. The story helps us think outside the box and realize that there are no limits or rules when...

Lies and Deceit

Many people in The Lightning Thief, both mortal and immortal, hope to deceive our narrator and others for the sake of causing chaos and violence. Lying doesn't necessarily involve saying something...

Violence

Man, The Lightning Thief is a nail-biter. Our narrator, Percy Jackson, really can't go three feet without encountering someone or something that wants to kill him, pronto. And he's only twelve year...

Memory

Memory is often manipulated in the world of The Lightning Thief, and it is often redefined as well. Memory is not so much what a person recalls of the past, but mostly refers to the collective memo...
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