I loved The Lightning Thief, as did my 11-year-old boy bookworm, which is why I picked up The Red Pyramid. Unfortunately, the many similarities to the first in this second series make it a subspectacular (though still good) read. The Lightning Thief "TLT" is about a 12-year-old boy who turns out to be the son of a Greek god. The Red Pyramid "TRP" is about a 12-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy whose bodies act as hosts for Egyptian gods. In both, the main character or characters must learn how to harness their powers and successfully complete a quest to prevent something horrible from happening. Both end rather expectedly. Unfortunately, changes in the writing recipe don't always work. The two-children-raised-in-different-countries aspect of the story didn't make sense. Younger sister Sadie was raised in England, and is portrayed as using some British-specific words and mannerisms, while Carter traipsed all over the globe, accompanying his Egyptologist father in his work as an archaeologist. The occasional parenthesied comments provided by the non-narrating sibling were annoying. Chapter titles, though still humorous, weren't as funny as those in TLT, nor was the dialogue, save for some stuff in Chapter 26 about a character named Bloodstained Blade. Lastly, one of the best aspects of TLT is the many clues, hints and happenings that somewhat slowly lead to the eventual revelation of Percy's status as the son of a god, while in TRP, it seems like the siblings' godlingness is revealed almost immediately. I preferred the delay. Last but not least, I love an author who can significantly switch things up from series to series, as Suzanne Collins does in Gregor the Overland versus The Hunger Games. In that way, the book is a bit of a disappointment. Fortunately, this type of story, which provides tons of great information about history, is still a wonderful way for kids to learn. Also good: The Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins, Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, and A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket.