I just got back from the Rick Riordan signing and it was so much fun! I’m going to just highlight my favorite parts of the event because Channel 17 in Provo is actually broadcasting it online next week if you want to watch it yourself. Rick Riordan is the New York Times Bestselling Author of the Percy Jackson Series, The Heroes of Olympus Series, and The Kane Chronicles. The Percy Jackson series is a modern version of Greek mythology, The Heroes of Olympus series is a modern version of Roman mythology, and the Kane Chronicles is a modern version of Egyptian mythology. They are all amazing and well written middle grade fiction.
Rick started off talking about how when Percy Jackson was still being published, he came out to Provo and he was used to like 50 people coming to his signings but 100s of people came when he got here in Provo. “Ever since then – Provo is awesome!” he said. When his publishers asked if he wanted to go back to Provo he said “Absolutely!” Provo is one of the lucky stops on his eight city tour. And Provo was the only library on the tour. Utah loves to support authors!
Funniest story ever – As a young teenager he tried to get a story published in a magazine. He got a rejection letter after a few months. His mom was so proud that he got rejected that she framed it. When he was in college his mother’s house burned down to nothing – except for his rejection letter. His mother reframed his rejection letter and it’s still hanging in her house.
No wait! This is the funniest story ever – Before Rick wrote middle grade fiction, he wrote some adult murder mysteries. He was a school teacher and one of his students asked him one day if they could read his book and write a report on it. Rick said, “No! That’s not appropriate! There’s violence and bad language…” Every kid in the classroom got a gleeful smile on their face. “Really??” So all the kids in his class went out and bought the book and highlighted all the bad words. Then they asked him why he didn’t write books for kids. Rick thought that was a pretty good point.
He didn’t write the Percy Jackson series until he started telling his son mythology stories at bedtime. When he ran out of greek myths to tell, his son asked him to make some up. So Rick made up a character that had ADHD and dyslexia, like his son did, and said that having those was a characteristic of being a demi-god.
Rick took some questions from some cute kids who had dressed up with cool Egyptian and Greek outfits. My favorite question was from an adorable 10 year old boy in an orange Camp Half-Blood t-shirt.
Kid: “Why do Zeus and Ra have a truce?” Meaning, they are the top Gods of each of the mythologies so why aren’t they fighting. Rick said it’s really hard to surprise him with a question and no one had ever asked him that. I thought the kid was pretty smart. Rick said that they co-exist and don’t interact much. They might not even know about each other.
He didn’t do a signing line, so my book wasn’t personalized (and I didn’t get a picture with him), but I got a cool signed copy of The Kane Chronicles Survival Guide. He got to the school at 5:30 and signed 1000 books which I thought was very awesome of him. I had the hardest time picking a book to giveaway to you guys but I figured all his books are so good that I can’t go wrong! I ended up getting The Lost Hero which is the first book in the Heroes of Olympus series. I read it last year and loved it.
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