The Lightning Thief - Rick Riordan This book made me channel my inner 12-year-old boy, and yes, I am a girl. I grew up in a neighborhood full of boys my age, playing hide and seek in the woods, beating each other with sticks, and scaring each other with cockroaches. This is the kind of story I would have gobbled up at 12, and the re-connection with that part of myself earns the book extra stars.

Percy (Perseus) Jackson is in sixth grade, in the process of being kicked out of yet another school because he is a "troublemaker"; but the truth is, strange things just keep happening to him. When he goes home for the summer, out of fear for his safety, his mother sends him to a very special Summer Camp for Half-Bloods, where he finds out all of the Greek Gods are real, and living in America. He is sent on a quest to find Zeus's Lightning Bolt because if He does not have it back by the Summer Solstice, the Gods will go to war and more than likely destroy the world.

Percy's got some common sense problems, however. At some point in the quest you think he'd realize that no one is actually put in his path to help him. He keeps going to people who offer him food and expects them to be other than fattening him up to eat him. Not very bright. I hope he learns that in the next book, he's certainly made the mistake enough times in this one. He's really got to stop sticking his head in the sand.

This wasn't the most amazing book, I've read better fantasy YA - but it was simply fun to read. I look forward to starting the next book in t-minus a handful of minutes.