When you’re dealing with an entire pantheon and their offspring, as Rick Riordan does in his Percy Jackson series, as a reader, you have to make peace with the fact that there are going to be a lot of main characters in the story.
And being that a lot of them are mythological entities that you’re already familiar with, you probably want to know if our favorites will appear prominently in the series before setting aside some time to start reading the books.
That’s where we come in! In today’s post, we’ll be introducing you to the ten primary characters of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series.
Needless to say, Percy Jackson plays a pretty large role in his own series (Find out How Old Is Percy Jackson?). Percy’s story begins when he discovers that he is the demigod son of the Ancient Greek god of the sea (and other things), Poseidon!
Not just the protagonist of the series, but the narrator as well, we see the world through his sea-green eyes as he learns about and the extent of his divine powers, such as controlling water and the ability to communicate with horses.
The knowledge of his godly lineage comes as something of a surprise to young Perseus, as his struggles with ADHD and dyslexia often left him feeling powerless and isolated when living as a human.
As you might expect, though, his new life isn’t all white fluffy clouds and rainbows, as it comes part and parcel with lots of responsibility and challenges, but what they are exactly is for you to find out!
Annabeth Chase is the demigod daughter of Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom and glory on the battlefield. She meets Percy at Camp Half-Blood, a facility that serves as a training camp for demigods.
She’s blessed with superhuman strength and agility, and it’s even hinted that she has the power to heal at a remarkable speed.
Incredibly wise and logical, she’s a fantastic person to have around when the going gets tough (as it so often does for Percy), but their relationship is by no means only practical in nature.
There’s a will-they-won’t-they undercurrent in the stories, and you’re going to have to read them to see how it pans out.
Grover is Percy’s best friend and is a satyr, meaning he has the head and torso of a human, but the lower body of a goat. He also has little horns sprouting from his skull.
He inherits stewardship of all nature from Pan, is labeled the bravest satyr of all, and is tasked with guiding demigods to Camp Half-Blood for training.
In fact, it’s Grover who’s responsible for uniting the four most powerful demigods of the century at the camp.
Tyson is one of Percy’s half-siblings on his father’s side, but unlike Percy, he’s not a demigod. Tyson (taking after his unknown mother, we presume) is a Cyclops.
The half-siblings live together in Poseidon’s cabin at Camp Half-Blood, and although the pair don’t get on at first, they become fast friends along the way.
Nico Di Angelo
Nico is one of the most powerful characters in the entire series.
As the demigod son of Hades, ruler of the underworld, he has the power to summon skeletal warriors, travel through shadows, and even cleave open fissures in the Earth that threaten to swallow people up.
He and his sister Bianca di Angelo are the only demigods in the story to have been born before Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades swore an oath never to sire any demigod children in case they lead to the downfall of Olympus.
As the son of the true outcast god, Both Nico and Bianca deal with a lot of prejudice and unfair treatment in the story.
They feel unwelcome at Camp Half-Blood and compare their presence there to that of their father amongst the Olympians.
In fact, Nico is established early on as one of the main antagonists, but as the plot thickens, loyalties may change.
Thalia is the demigod daughter of Zeus, and thus, has awesome weather-based powers, such as manifesting lightning, manipulating electricity, and exerting a degree of control over the sky.
As the offspring of the king of the gods, she also has some dynamite leadership qualities, skills she doesn’t use much of after she becomes a tree… but that’s another story.
Stylistically, Thalia is a bit of a punk rocker, with spiky black hair and lots of dark makeup, and of course, she has lightning-blue eyes.
In many ways, she’s very similar to Percy – who is technically her cousin – so much so that Annabeth remarks that they’re so alike that they could be best friends or worst enemies.
Luke is the demigod child of Hermes, the messenger of the gods, and god of dreams, sleep, trade, wealth, fertility, and travel, among other things.
Similarly to Nico, he’s a very troubled individual who harbors a great bitterness towards the gods for what he describes as the abandonment of their children.
His childhood was particularly turbulent, as his mother was driven crazy on the path to becoming an Oracle, leaving him to raise himself.
All this resentment and hatred doesn’t define him, as he has a number of redeeming qualities, but it does make him susceptible to certain corrupting powers.
You know how the first book in the Percy Jackson series is entitled “The Lightning Thief”? Well, guess which god known for forging and throwing lightning the stolen lightning belongs to?
Yep, the king of the gods and lord of Olympus, Zeus — He plays a pivotal role in the Percy Jackson narrative from the get-go.
As Percy’s father, Poseidon features heavily in the first 5 books in the series. Like the other gods in the story, he has his foibles, but ultimately, he has a good heart and is considered a benevolent god.
With coal-black hair and sea-green eyes, he looks just like Percy, or, rather, Percy looks exactly like him.
Their relationship is complicated to begin with, as he seems to be using Percy rather than being a father figure to him, or as much of a father figure as a god is permitted to be, anyway — There are a bunch of strange rules.
But considering his father, the titan Cronos, swallowed him the moment he was born, It’s fair to say he’s doing a much better job of caring for his child.
In the first book, he is accused by Zeus of having stolen his Master Bolt, which is part of the reason it falls on Percy to track it down and prove his father’s innocence.
As the last member of “The Big Three” along with Zeus and Poseidon, Hades plays a major role in the narrative of the Percy Jackson books for adults.
He is the first-born son of titans Cronos and Rhea, making him the elder brother of the other two major gods.
While it’s not uncommon for there to be tension between siblings, the distrust and conflict between Hades and Zeus is on another level, with both attempting to vanquish one another’s demigod children on multiple occasions.
These are the ten main characters in the Percy Jackson series, but there are many, many more to get acquainted with as you read, including a great many Greek gods, and eventually, their Roman counterparts as well!
Don’t let this daunt you, though, as these books really are an absolute treat for all ages, with each character bringing something exciting and historical to the table.
And if you’re not too familiar with the Greek pantheon, these texts serve as the perfect introduction.