JUNE 28TH 2005 - THE FIRST PUBLICATION OF PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THIEF BOOK!!! In June 1997, Rick Riordan signed with Bantam Books to prepare the book for publishing, in 2004 it was sold to Miramax books for enough money to let Riordan quit his job and focus on writing the series. After it was released in June 28th 2005, it sold over 1.2 million copies. Happy 8-year-since-the-first-book-came-out anniversary demigods!! THANK YOU RICK RIORDAN!