The Red Pyramid: Book 1 The Kane Chronicles

I know I said I was kind of off fantasy but when I got the email telling me that Rick Riordan's The Red Pyramid was waiting for me at the library I totally squeed with happiness. I love Rick Riordan. His books are just so much fun. A total bonus, as far was I was concerned, was that The Kane Chronicles deal with Egyptian mythology. I was lucky enough in university to take some Egyptian history and archaeology courses from someone well regarded in the field. We didn't deal so much with mythology exactly but it's hard to study the history without knowing something of the mythology so it all tied together. Basically, I got my geek on.

When I wasn't geeking I was having fun reading The Red Pyramid, something that filled me with relied. I had read a few non-spoilery reviews earlier this summer and people didn't seem to be loving it quite as much as the Percy Jackson books. Some people didn't like that there were two narrators (I loved it) and others found the Egyptian mythology too confusing (that's what Wikipedia is for).

But most of all, I like the characters. I liked Carter, with his properness and his concerns. I like Sadie, which is hardly surprising as I have a fondness for out-spoken girls. I really like how they played off each other. They were believable as siblings despite the fact that they were raised separately.  Since their mother's death they only see each other two days a year due to a messy custody battle between the maternal grandparents and their father. (Mr. Riordan, I really hope that someday we get to hear that spatula story...)

I felt for Carter. It's hard to accept that your grandparents have basically disowned you because you look like your father rather than your mother. (Unless there's more to that....we'll see.) He travels the world with his father but they never really have a home. I also felt for Sadie, being cut off from her immediate family and not allowed to really get to know her father or her brother. Each felt that the other got the best part of the deal. When circumstances force them to work together they realize that they compliment each other -- that you can be family even when you've spent your life apart.

Like with the Olympians series, who is good and who is bad may be always in flux. It's really rather perfect as we are talking about a mythology that is based on the balance of order and chaos. I can already tell that the question of who to trust is going to play a big role in this series (as it does in life). Among the gods I loved Bast ( the line about being a cat and therefore every she sees is hers? I laughed out loud for real.) but the rest of them? I don't trust them. I would advise Carter and Sadie to do the same.

Note: I might want a white crocodile. Or a basketball-playing baboon. (But still not nearly as much as I ever wanted a hippogryff.)