Rick Riordan

If my life is going to mean anything, I have to live it myself. - Rick Riordan

Richard Russell Riordan Jr. was born in San Antonio, Texas United States on 5 June 1964. He is an American author, best known for the Percy Jackson series and has written over 40 books. He attended University of North Texas before transferring to the University of Texas at Austin where he received bachelor’s degrees in History and English. He then received his teacher’s certification from the University of Texas. 

Riordan originally started writing novels for adults, writing a mystery series called Tres Navarre. He then began writing for young adults after his son asked him to tell bedtime stories involving Greek gods. Rick originally wrote The Lightning Thief for his son, Haley Riordan, who has ADHD and dyslexia, in order to encourage him to read. The character Percy Jackson was based on him and his students who have experienced learning difficulties.

Today, his books have been translated into 42 languages and over one hundred million copies of his books are in print in the United States. He now lives in Boston with his wife and two sons.

Fast facts

  • His book Percy Jackson and the Olympians remained on the New York Times bestseller list for 287 weeks (5 and a half years!). No other book has ever been on the list for that long.
  • Rick taught middle school for 15 years in San Francisco and Texas before becoming a full-time author.
  • Like many fans, Rick was unhappy with the film adaptations of his novels released in 2010 and 2013, saying, "Well, to you guys, it’s a couple hours’ entertainment. To me, it’s my life’s work going through a meat grinder when I pleaded with them not to do it."
  • Disney+ announced in May 2020 that it was developing a Percy Jackson series adaptation.
  • He is one of the highest paid authors in the world.
  • A musical adaptation of the bestselling novel hit Broadway in 2019 called The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical.

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