Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Battle Begins...Book or Movie?

GUWB is getting ready to feature the Percy Percy Jackson series on our blog. To start us off, we've asked Jacob Ivey to share his 9-year-old thoughts about how the book, The Lightning Thief (by Rick Riordan) compares to the movie.

Lara: I understand that you read the book twice before seeing the movie. In your opinion, which one do you feel is better?

Jacob: I would have to say the book, because there are a lot more details. You can even sense how the characters are feeling in different situations which you don't get from the movie. You can't hear what is going on inside their heads. Another point I'd like to make is that you can miss even small bits in a movie and you can't go back. In a book, you can always re-read for a better understanding.

Lara: You definitely shared some great reasons for reading the book. As far as the movie goes, did you have a favorite part?

Jacob: I would have to say, even though Medusa was very entertaining, the Lotus Casino was action-packed.

Lara: I have heard you talking about some of the differences between the movie and the book. Would you mind sharing some of your thoughts about that?

Jacob: Bringing me to this thought it's kind of like your first question. Because there were so many changes, it's another reason to like the book better. I'll list some things that surprised me.

1. In the book, Ares had the Master Bolt and in the movie it was Luke.

2. Ares wasn't even in the movie, but played a major part in the story line of the book.

3. In the book, all of the pearls were given to them. In the movie, they had to find them individually.

4. The Chihuahua Lady (Echidna) was in the book, but not the movie. Actually, the whole scene of the St. Louis Gateway Arch is taken out of the movie. I think that the Hydra scene might have been used in its place.

5. In the book, Annabeth shows Percy around Camp Half-Blood. Grover does it in the movie.

6. In the book, there were cabins for each God/Goddess' child in a U-shape. Percy went to cabin #11 (Hermes) since he was undetermined. In the movie there were tents in the woods.

7. Luke's shoes were given to Percy, but he gave them to Grover and didn't end up wearing them. In the movie, they were kept and worn by Percy.

8. In the book, they send Medusa's head to Olympus. The movie has them bringing it along to help with their quest to freeze Hydra.

9. Not only is Ares missing from the movie, his half-blood daughter, aka Clarisse, is missing as well. Too bad. I think I may have laughed the hardest when she was soaked by Percy's powers in the bathroom. This would have been easy to include in the movie, but just wasn't.

10. In the book, Annabeth was on Percy's team for the first "Capture the Flag." In the movie, they were against each other.

11. Percy has a capped pen named "Riptide;" in the movie he has a clicking pen without a name.

12. Percy uses glass to kill Medusa, but in the movie it's an iPod Touch. Why would he have an iPod Touch if monsters sense electronics? Wouldn't that draw MONSTER (big) attention? Get the play on words?

13. Grover walks with a limp in the book and not with crutches like he does in the movie.

14. Percy's mom, Sally, is left behind in the Underworld. However, in the movie it's Grover who is left.

15. The book had Dionysys being in charge of Camp Half-Blood. The movie had Chiron as the director of the camp and not director of camp activities.

16. Where is the BLUE food? That's what Percy's mom was famous for in the book.

Lara: WOW, Jacob! You have pointed out some interesting differences between the book and the movie. I have a feeling that there may be even more.

Jacob: Of course, there are TONS more. I just don't have enough time to tell you all of them.

Lara: Maybe other people could share more and find ones that even YOU didn't notice. Let's open this discussion up for others to join in.

Jacob: Okay...sounds good!

If you have seen the movie and/or read the book, please take a moment to share your thoughts. Weigh in on which is better. Tell your favorite part. Consider adding more ways that the two are different or just send a "shout out" to agree with some of the points Jacob has made.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Read on...
The Grow Up With Books Team

Submitted by Lara Ivey and Jacob Ivey


  1. Love this interview - what a thoughtful kid Jacob is!

  2. Yes, he is! My favorite thought of his is about the benefits of reading the book..."You can even sense how the characters are feeling in different situations which you don't get from the movie. You can't hear what is going on inside their heads." He totally gets it. For the teacher in me...that's what it's all about. Thanks for adding your thoughts.

  3. I have read this book to three different fifth grade classes. I love the series. I missed the St. Louis Arch scene in the movie. And the whole mood of the movie is ancient Greece while in the book in is contemporary. I really missed Athena, Ares, the scene in Denver with the water park was missing also. If you haven't read the book, the movie was really good but if you have then the movie comes up short. I always say, READ THE BOOK BECAUSE IT IS ALWAYS BETTER!

  4. Sounds like great advice from someone who really knows the series! We felt the same way about the movie coming up short. Good, but short. Thanks for adding your thoughts!

  5. What a great post and great idea--I love this interview. Thanks for sharing. I have yet to see the movie--will probably have to wait for DVD now.


  6. Margo,
    Thanks for the comments. My son LOVED doing the interview as it validated his reading and hard work. I'll let him know you enjoyed it. It's definitely worth getting on DVD. :-)