The First Percy Jackson Book Ends With A Twist

The new Disney+ series adapts Rick Riordan’s The Lightning Thief.

Percy Jackson (played by Walker Scobell),  Annabeth Chase (Leah Sava Jeffries), and Grover Underwood...

Disney+’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians series isn’t the first adaptation of author Rick Riordan’s books — but it might be the most faithful.

That’s because Riordan, who previously slammed the film versions starring Logan Lerman as the titular hero, has been involved in the series since its inception. “I feel comfortable telling fans of the books who have been waiting — in some cases, decades — for this kind of faithful adaptation, that this is the one you’ve been waiting for,” the writer told Entertainment Weekly.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians follows the storyline of Riordan’s original five-book series, beginning with 2005’s The Lightning Thief in Season 1. Here’s a quick refresher on the plot and ending of his first Percy Jackson novel.

Percy Is A Demigod

In Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, readers meet 12-year-old Percy Jackson, who’s sent to a boarding school for troubled youths in upstate New York because he has ADHD and dyslexia. During a stormy beach getaway with his mother Sally, Percy’s friend Grover reveals himself as a satyr and informs him that Percy is a Greek demigod.

Disney/David Bukach

Grover has kept a watchful eye on Percy until he was old enough to attend training at Camp Half-Blood. Now that dark supernatural forces are after Percy, they flee to the Long Island summer camp for young demigods to help him learn the skills to become battle-ready and protect the mortal world from monsters such as Medusa and the Minotaur.

While en route to Camp Half-Blood, the Minotaur attacks the trio, and though Percy defeats the monster, his mother disappears in a shower of gold and is presumed dead.

Welcome To Camp Half-Blood

While learning the ins and outs of his secret identity at Camp Half-Blood, Percy discovers that sea god Poseidon is his father, and there’s trouble in Olympus. Zeus’ master bolt has been stolen, and he believes Percy was the culprit, as part of Poseidon’s supposed scheme to overthrow him.

Disney/David Bukach

Zeus gives Poseidon 10 days to return the master weapon, under the threat of an all-out war. Believing that Hades set him up, Percy embarks on a quest to the Underworld (located in Los Angeles) to confront him, return the master bolt to Olympus, and ultimately prevent a war between the gods. He’s joined by his friends Grover and Annabeth.

Battling The Gods

After a perilous cross-country journey, the three arrive in the Underworld and discover that a defeated titan named Kronos — not Hades — was behind the theft, hoping to start a war. With an assist from another then-unknown human hero, Kronos used his powers of manipulation to trick Percy into delivering the master bolt, which was hidden in his magic backpack, to the Underworld.

Meanwhile, Hades is convinced that Percy stole Zeus’ lightning bolt and his magic helm of darkness. He is holding Percy’s mother, who’s not actually dead, hostage in a shower of gold. Hades demands Percy hand over his magic helm to save her.

Disney/David Bukach

Surrounded by armies of the dead, Percy realizes he has only three magic pearls. He ultimately decides to use them to save Grover and Annabeth, promising his mother he’ll return for her. After escaping and winning a battle against the god of war, Ares, Percy arranges for the helm’s return to the Underworld and returns to Mount Olympus (now located in New York City) with Zeus’ lightning bolt to prevent the impending war.

The Book Ending, Explained

Back at Olympus, Percy finally meets Poseidon, who informs him that Hades has returned his mother as a peace offering — and that he has an important choice to make when he returns home to his family’s small Upper East Side apartment.

Once there, Percy finds Medusa’s head, a trophy he’d forgotten he collected and mailed home earlier, and realizes he can use it to petrify his abusive stepfather, Gabe, thus saving his mother from her miserable marriage. However, Sally begs him not to, and he agrees, allowing her to save herself. In the process, he also saves himself from the tragic hero prophecy Poseidon had feared.

Disney/David Bukach

Upon returning to Camp Half-Blood, Percy’s friend Luke betrays him and is revealed to be the human hero Kronos used for the theft. After Luke conjures a scorpion to poison Percy, he warns that Kronos will rise and destroy the age of the gods. Percy survives the poisoning, thanks to his teacher Chiron’s help, and realizes his fight against the rise of the titans has only just begun.

As Riordan’s website states, The Lightning Thief is “ultimately about Percy coming of age, learning to trust his friends and his own abilities, accepting his parents for who they are, and choosing love and loyalty over resentment and despair.”