Krypton Radio would like to wish a very happy birthday to two writers. Happy Birthday to our own Gary DaBaum, DJ and fellow writer!
Happy Birthday to Rick Riordan, the man who helped make Greek mythology popular again, and is now doing the same with Egyptian and Norse mythology.
Richard Russell Riordan, Jr. , was born June 5, 1964, in San Antonio, Texas. He’s written over 30 novels, many of which have won awards. He began his writing career with adult mystery novels. He’s best known for his YA modern fantasy novels featuring the adventures of Percy Jackson, Sadie and Carter Kane, and Magnus Chase. His books, which have been translated into 42 languages, are bestsellers worldwide. Two of them have been made into movies.
Rick Riordan was interested in music and writing from a young age (he was lead singer of a folk/rock band in college), but after graduation he became a teacher. He concentrated on his classroom, but living in San Francisco, he became homesick for Texas. To combat that homesickness, he wrote a detective novel set in San Antonio. Big Red Tequila was the first of the seven Tres Navarre books. It won the Shamus, Anthony, and Edgar Awards.
Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief started as a bedtime story for his son Haley. As a middle school teacher, he had done a creative writing project where students created their own demi-gods. So he created Percy Jackson, son of Poseidon, and told his story over several nights to his son. Because Haley has dyslexia and ADD, so did Percy, but Riordan made these problems into demi-god abilities. Dyslexia because the demi-gods are genetically inclined to read Greek instead of English, ADD because a hero must be aware of his surroundings whilst battling monsters. Haley and his brother Patrick encouraged their father to turn the bedtime story into a book.
Riordan has three settings for modern fantasy. The Percy Jackson books (the Percy Jackson and the Olympians quintet, the Heroes of Olympus quintet, and the Trials of Apollo series) focus on the modern day descendants of the Greek and Roman Gods. The Kane Chronicles trilogy feature the adventures of Carter and Sadie Kane, magicians and descendants of the pharaohs who occasionally host the spirits of Egyptian deities. The Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard trilogy are about children of the Norse gods. All three settings co-mingle; Magnus Chase, son of Frey, is the cousin of Annabeth Chase, daughter of Athena. Percy Jackson has met the Kane twins and Magnus.
Rick Riordan is also the curator of the Rick Riordan Presents imprint from Disney-Hyperion. Rick Riordan Presents will publish books by other authors, with an emphasis on fantasy based on other cultures. It will “focus on diverse, mythology-based fiction by new, emerging, and under-represented authors.” The first book is Roshani Chokshi’s Aru Shah and the End of Time, which is based on Hindu mythology. The next two books will have Mayan and Korean backgrounds.
June 5 is not only Rick Riordan’s birthday, but also his wife Becky’s birthday and their wedding anniversary. So happy anniversary and happy birthday to Rick and Becky Riordan, and happy birthday to DJ Gary DaBaum!