How does The Lightining Thief by Rick Riordan fit the elements of Fantasy books?

Evaluating Modern Fantasy

Guidelines pg. 155

Seven Elements of Fantasy – Below are the seven basic elements of fantasy and a description of each. After reading your chosen book, use that information to fill in the blanks from each of the seven elements. If your book does not have one of the elements, please list that as well. Each answer needs to be at least 4 sentences.


Magic is the most basic element of fantasy. Magic is that in which charms, spells or rituals are used in order to produce a supernatural event. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Otherworlds are an imaginative creation by the author of a place that is nothing like earth. It is a completely imagined world where anything can happen and is only limited by the author’s imagination. One thing I respect the most about fantasy writers is their ability to create from scratch an entirely imagined world where unreal things happen. The author has two choices when introducing an imaginary world to the reader. He or she can begin the book by locating all characters in this imagined world and never refer to what we know as the real world. The characters can also have the ability to jump between two worlds. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

3.Universal Themes

Universal themes are a must-have in a fantasy story. The most basic of these is good versus evil. There’s always a good guy trying to fight for what is right against the powerful force of a bad guy. A great example of good vs. evil is A Wrinkle in Time. Other themes include love (Pinocchio), friendship (Charlotte’s Web) and perseverance in the face of danger (Lord of the Rings). __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Heroism is something we all love. We love to see heroes save the day and become victorious over evil. Many times the heroes are ordinary people in difficult circumstances. They themselves don’t know of their powers or abilities until they are called upon to perform heroic feats. It is that humble strength that we love to see. Some characters are guided by a larger, more powerful force.


5.Special Character Types

Special character types are abundant in fantasies. Some examples are fairies, giants, ogres, dragons, witches, unicorns and centaurs. We love these characters because they are so different from what we find in our daily lives. However, a good author can shape the character in such a way that the reader has no problem believing that such a being could exist.


6.Talking Animals

The use of talking animals or anthropomorphism in fantasy stories can be used for several purposes. Sometimes the animals can talk to humans, as in James in the Giant Peach or The Chronicles of Narnia. Then sometimes the animals only talk amongst each other and are incapable of talking with humans, as in Charlotte’s Web, Redwall or Rabbit Hill. The need and use for communication is prevalent in both types. Here we can also mention the use of talking toys, as in The Velveteen Rabbit or The Indian in the Cupboard.


7.Fantastic Objects

Fantastic objects help the characters perform their task. Many times these objects become almost a character in themselves. Where would Dorothy be without her slippers, Harry without his wand or Tinkerbelle without her dust? Many times characters need such an object to make themselves complete.


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