The story of Sadie and Carter Kane picks up with The Throne of Fire, three months after the events of The Red Pyramid.
After getting new recruits into their Brooklyn home and starting their training process, Sadie and Carter are met with the realization that their world-saving job is not over yet. Apophis, the Egyptian lord of Chaos, is preparing to break out of his prison come the Spring Equinox, which is five days after the start of the book. And the only way to possibly prevent Apophis from escaping is to wake up the Sun God: Ra. But in order to wake up Ra, they must find the three parts of the Scroll of Ra, which are scattered in three different locations that they must determine.
At the same time, not all the gods want to see Ra return because that would mean them not getting a shot at the throne anymore. So it is with both internal and external resistance that they must go on their quest, not knowing that it might well be Apophis’ plan for them to bring back an old and fragile and senile Ra so the world can finally sink in Chaos.
The Throne of Fire stays true to the writing style of the book that preceded it: both Carter and Sadie tell parts of the story. At times, when both characters go on separate ways to fulfill the quest, it is needed to keep you informed of the happenings. The intelligent thing about such a style is that it allows the author, Rick Riordian, to create cliffhangers every few chapters with a character and pick up where the other character left off, leaving you in the dark about what might have possibly happened and keeping you hooked to the pages of his book, wanting to know what happens.
And like its predecessor, The Throne of Fire keeps up with using Egyptian mythology to drive the plot, especially with the story of how Ra got exiled in the first place, as well as the importance of that mythology in fulfilling their quest.
However, unlike The Red Pyramid, The Throne of Fire has obvious girl-boy romantic interactions, mostly with Sadie who starts expressing romantic interest in two characters. And Carter has a side plot in the book involving saving his love interest from the first book, a girl named Zia Rashid.
I have one main gripe with The Throne of Fire, which is a serious lack of understanding (and obviously no will to research) of the Arabic language. At some point, it is revealed that the location of Zia Rashid is “Al Ahmar Makhan.” Not only is this is a literal translation of “The Red Place” but it is also the incorrect way to spell “Makhan” and the incorrect way to write the expression. It doesn’t stop here. According to the author, “makhan” means red and “al ahmar” means sand, which for anyone familiar with Arabic knows it’s almost the opposite and “al ahmar” means red, not sand.
However, with that aside, The Throne of Fire remains an enjoyable book, although it’s quite shorter than its predecessor. I can’t wait for the final installment in the Kane Chronicles, scheduled for a May 2012 release.