If you’ve watched the Percy Jackson movies or read a Tres Navarre adventure, you have encountered the literary genius of Rick Riordan, one of the most engaging writers of the 21st century.
In his bibliography are the uber-popular Percy Jackson novels, a few 39 Clues books, and three standalone novels. However, Percy Jackson’s books usually overshadow the rest of his work.
In this article, you will discover all of Rick Riordan’s books in order. You will also find out about his life and journey to literary stardom. But first, let’s look at his best books.
Our best Rick Riordan Books at a glance:
- Daughter of the Deep
- The Lightning Thief
- The Hidden Oracle
- The Sword of Summer
- The Red Pyramid
- The Lost Hero
- Big Red Tequila
Rick Riordan: The Master of Modern Young-Adult Mythology
Riordan is best known for his Percy Jackson series, which has spawned movies and a TV show deal. But the Texas-born author has also penned several books in other series and genres and now has an imprint that brings fresh writing talent to a loyal audience.
Riodrdan was always interested in history and the English language. He got a formal education in English and history and ultimately became a full-time, certified teacher.
Despite his interest in literature and history, Riordan wouldn’t approach the idea of writing his own stories until his son Haley was of reading age. It was the responsibility of reading bedtime stories to Haley that forced Riordan to create Percy Jackson. When Haley was diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia, Percy Jackson became hyperactive and dyslexic as well.
Riordan’s first book was not in the Percy Jackson series, though. It was Big Red Tequila, which had the same setting as the one Riordan grew up in. The book was retroactively made part of a series. The Tres Navarre series had a successful run but didn’t come close to the level of Percy Jackson.
To keep the Rick Riordan best-books roundup from becoming a Percy Jackson roundup, we have created a separate post for the Percy Jackson books. Riordan’s bibliography is far more expansive than the Percy Jackson run and includes books from multiple genres. Still, Percy Jackson and the Olympians’ books cannot be omitted from a complete list of Riordan’s works.
Rick Riordan Books In Order of Publication
Percy Jackson & the Olympians Books In Order
- The Lightning Thief (2005)
- The Sea of Monsters (2006)
- The Titan’s Curse (2007)
- The Battle of the Labyrinth (2008)
- The Last Olympian (2009)
- The Chalice of the Gods (2023)
The Heroes of Olympus Books in Order
- The Lost Hero (2010)
- The Son of Neptune (2011)
- The Mark of Athena (2012)
- The House of Hades (2013)
- The Blood of Olympus (2014)
The Kane Chronicles Books in Order
Demigods and Magicians Books in Order
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard Books in Order
The Trials of Apollo Books in Order
- The Hidden Oracle (2016)
- The Dark Prophecy (2017)
- The Burning Maze (2018)
- The Tyrant’s Tomb (2019)
- The Tower of Nero (2020)
- Big Red Tequila (1997)
- The Widower’s Two-Step (1998)
- The Last King of Texas (2001)
- The Devil Went Down to Austin (2002)
- Southtown (2004)
- Mission Road (2005)
- Rebel Island (2008)
The 39 Clues Books in Order
- The Maze of Bones (2008)
- Introduction to The 39 Clues: The Black Book of Buried Secrets (2010)
- Vespers Rising (Collaborative, 2011)
The Best Rick Riordan Books To Read
In this book, Riordan offers a fresh take on the adventure/coming-of-age story without co-opting previous mythos. This makes Daughter of the Deep one of Riordan’s best works. The story follows Ana, an orphan whose parents passed away during a scientific expedition.
Having grown up without parents, she feels out of place and unwanted at school. Freshman year comes with a chance for a new social start. And while things are going well, a weekend trial at sea looms ahead of her. She is set up by Riordan to discover her true origins, much like Percy Jackson.
But this time around, all the pre-existing mythology is absent. This book is a great read for people who have grown up reading Percy Jackson. It is a grown-up take on what could have been had Riordan confined himself to realistic fiction.
The Lightning Thief is the most popular book in Riordan’s bibliography. It launches the iconic Percy Jackson series following an accident that leads to Jackson’s discovery that he is a demigod and the son of the Greek God Poseidon. The Lightning theft that is pinned on Jackson’s camp drives the plot forward. If Jackson doesn’t find the lightning thief or the bolt of Zeus, there could be a civil war between the gods.
The Hidden Oracle is Riordan’s take on the story of the fallen god. This book launches the Trial of Apollo series, with the Greek God being cast into the earthly realm as a teenage boy without powers. This is his punishment for angering his father, Zeus. He has to regain favor with his father before his enemies take the opportunity to destroy him permanently.
The Sword of Summer follows Magnus Chase on a brand new journey adapting a different pantheon of gods. This time around, the protagonist is an Asgardian demigod. With a new mythology and main character, Riordan brings a refreshing narrative with just enough of what’s familiar to make Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard an instant hit with any Percy Jackson fan.
The Kane Chronicles is Rick Riordan’s series based on Egyptian gods and fictional events in the modern world. The Red Pyramid launches this series with Dr. Kane, the titular lead, who brings together two estranged brothers for a scientific experiment at the British Museum. When things don’t go as planned, the Egyptian god Set is unleashed.
The Lost Hero is a story that takes place within the Percy Jackson universe but features a different series lead. This time around, it’s a kid who wakes up with amnesia and learns that the girl whose hands he is holding is his girlfriend. She, on the other hand, has to deal with a boyfriend who suddenly doesn’t remember her and the disappearance of her father, regarding which she has seriously vivid nightmares.
While Riordan carved his niche in mythology-inspired fiction, he has a very strong detective fiction series in his bibliography. Big Red Tequila is special not just for being a non-mythological narrative by Rick Riordan but also for being the very first book Riordan wrote.
Rick Riordan FAQs
Is Rick Riordan Retired?
Rick Riordan is not retired. He is writing books as well as executive producing the television series adaptation of his Percy Jackson series. He continues to do readings and give interviews and is very much in the day-to-day grind of a popular novelist.
Is Rick Riordan Going To Write A New Series?
Riordan might write a new series in the future, though he is dedicated to the Percy Jackson universe for now, bringing a new story into the canon almost a decade after the last book and actively executive-producing a series adaptation.
It does not seem like Riordan is devoting much time to developing a new series. And he has very little reason to when a series he is personally attached to is doing so well. It is worth remembering that Percy Jackson is a stand-in for Riordan’s son, and coming by such inspiration for a new series lead is difficult for an author.
Is The Percy Jackson Series Over?
The Percy Jackson series is not over. Its latest entry is due for publication in 2023 after the author decided to return to the world of Olympians. Before Percy Jackson and the Chalice of the Gods (2023), the last Percy Jackson book was released in 2009.
A 14-year break between the second-to-last and the latest book did fuel speculation that the series was over. For all intents and purposes, it was. However, Riordan has left enough room to revisit the world if he changes his mind. And it took him 14 years to change his mind.
Is Percy Jackson In Demigods And Magicians?
Percy Jackson is in Demigods and Magicians as a primary character. The book contains short stories, unlike the main Percy Jackson novels and its events are canon. However, you do not need to read the Demigods and Magicians entry to make sense of the Percy Jackson story.
There have been no new books in the Tres Navarre series in 15 years. Given that Rebel Island (2008) concluded on a note bearing hints of finality, it is pretty safe to say that the Tres Navarre series is over.
Riordan has returned to Percy Jackson after 14 years, though. So the passage of time cannot be taken as immutable evidence of a Rick Riordan series’ conclusion.
Are All Rick Riordan Books Connected?
Rick Riordan’s books are mostly connected to the Olympian universe. Percy Jackson and all the related fantasy stories written by Riordan take place in the same fictional universe. But the Tres Navarre series is not part of it. His adult books are not connected to his young adult and kids’ books.
Wrapping It Up
Percy Jackson, a character Rick Riordan created to tell bedtime stories to his son, became his claim to fame.
Writing novels, short stories, and spin-offs in the fictional world that started at Haley Riordan’s bedside kept the author busy for two decades. He has written books outside of the Percy Jackson universe, and many of them are among his best works, as listed in the works above.
Still, Percy Jackson remains Riordan’s most popular, marketable, and adaptable character.