Sunday, April 14, 2013

The Red Pyramid.

The Red Pyramid
by: Rick Riordan
The Red Pyramid (Kane Chronicles, #1)
Sadie and Carter Kane discover that the gods of Egypt are waking, and the worst of them —Set— has his sights on the Kanes. To stop him, the siblings embark on a dangerous journey across the globe - a quest that brings them ever closer to the truth about their family and their links to a secret order that has existed since the time of the pharaohs.

This book is just so typical Rick Riordan (and if you didn't know, that is a VERY good thing). And I'm going to try my very best not to compare this book to the Percy Jackson books. I really loved this book and learning so much about Egypt mythology. I knew a fairly good amount about Greek mythology when starting out the Percy Jackson series (having read The Odyssey for school and just general knowledge) but Egyptian mythology is a lot less common to come across in everyday life. So I didn't know hardly anything about it. That made it a really different experience from the PJO series.
Awesome Main Characters: CHECK
Carter: I kind of love Carter. He starts out this sort of scared kid without much strength or guts or anything and he transforms into this not so scared kid who is realistically heroic. I liked that he didn't completely transform in this book, he was still himself by the end, just himself with some improvements. And he was even really funny in places! Overall a really great character. I really enjoyed watching Carter and Sadie go from practically strangers to a real brother and sister within the course of the book. It was done incredibly well and became this really realistic sort of relationship.
Sadie: I absolutely adored Sadie! She sort of reminded me of a more sarcastic, less analytical Annabeth, that is to say that she's really tough and just all around awesome (Okay, I'm done comparing now...I promise). She was hilarious and pretty dang brave for a twelve year old. Her and Carter lost everything but each other at some point in their journey and they found a way to keep going.
Fantastic Setting and Plot: CHECK
As stated above, the mythology was done with the typical Riordan brilliance. It was funny and interesting and exciting. You (at least, I) never get tired of the way Riordan can weave together a story and all its parts. This book had a whole lot of moving around and traveling, from London to Manhattan then to Egypt, Paris, Texas, Arizona, and then to D.C. they were nearly constantly moving from place to place. Something that struck me though was that it never got confusing. You knew why they were going to that place and what they were hoping to accomplish there. Also, Rick does a great job of describing those places in pretty good detail.
Interesting Side Characters: CHECK
Isis and Horus: The whole gods-hosts thing was pretty crazy and it added a bit more confusion to the story. I thought the gods' conversations with Sadie and Carter were all hilarious.
Bast: At the beginning I thought she was going to be this minor character who didn't have much of a role, but much to my surprise she was one of the biggest players. I can't wait to see how her role gets expanded and changed in the next two books.
Set: As much as a villain as he is, I couldn't help feel bad for the guy. I mean, he was basically doomed to come up with these evil, take-the-throne plots for all of time only to be stopped each and every time by same people. Also he was kind of a dummy...
Zia: Hers was the plot twist that I was least expecting! I couldn't believe that the Zia we knew throughout the whole thing was not even the real Zia. I definitely am all for her and Carter eventually getting closer because, gosh, the guy is just so earnest about it all and it's adorable.
Great Writing: CHECK
One thing that I noticed in this book (and I'm assuming this series) was the amount of foreshadowing that Rick used, and used effectively. Occasionally you noticed it enough to point and say, "That's foreshadowing, but I have absolutely no idea what it is foreshadowing." I'm also struck by how well Rick writes the action and fight scenes. You can always tell who is punching who and where and why (which is harder to find than you'd think).
"Fairness doesn't mean everyone gets the same...Fairness means everyone gets what they need."
"...but only humans have creativity, the power to change history rather than simply repeat it."
"Why hasn't your family married you off to someone far away?"
"Chaos cannot be kept down forever. It grows. It seeps into the cracks of civilization, breaks down the edges. It cannot be kept in balance. That is simply its nature."

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