Reviews for Serpent's Shadow


Booklist Reviews 2012 June #1
Armageddon looms as teen magicians Carter and Sadie Kane work feverishly to foil the evil machinations of the Chaos snake, Apophis, and, ultimately, to destroy him. These modern-day siblings have a lot going for them in the struggle, from gifted fellow magicians to the Egyptian gods themselves, but between frequent attacks from an assortment of enemies and the realization that their stalwart friend, Walt, is dying, the outcome of the conflict often looks bleak. While the final battle rages, each of the main characters merges with one of the gods in hopes that their magnified powers will enable them to prevail. This epic battle and the quiet concluding chapters glow, alternating heroism and humanity, with any trace of bombast erased by the wry wit of the alternating narrators, Sadie and Carter. As in The Red Pyramid (2010) and The Throne of Fire (2011), the cast of characters here is confusingly large and the backstory sometimes seems tucked into the spaces between the battles. But powered by Riordan's talent for creating vividly written action scenes and his ability to keep a complicated story moving, this volume brings the Kane Chronicles series to a rousing conclusion. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Spring
With Egyptian gods from the previous two books and teen magicians Zia and Walt, the Kanes face the culmination of peril. Serpent of Chaos Apophis is attempting to swallow Sun God Ra, destroying creation; Sadie and Carter try to perform a spell of banishment on him. The siblings' confidence and ability grows, wry asides keep them accessible, and Riordan's climax soundly delivers.

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Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2012 #5
Joined by the Egyptian gods who helped them in previous books (The Red Pyramid, rev. 7/10; The Throne of Fire, rev. 9/11) as well as their fellow teen magicians Zia and Walt, Sadie and Carter Kane face the culmination of peril in this third volume in the Kane Chronicles. Apophis, the Serpent of Chaos, is attempting to achieve his legendary goal of swallowing the Sun God, Ra, and destroying all creation. If Sadie and Carter can collect the knowledge and tools they need from journeys to ancient sites in Egypt and the Duat, the Egyptian underworld, they might be able to perform a spell of banishment on him -- but they could just as easily burn themselves out in a spell of such power. As they solve puzzles and fight demons, the siblings grow in confidence and ability. Their wry asides and comedic takes on their predicament keep them accessible to their adventure-loving audience, many of whom will enjoy the romantic byplay between Carter and Zia and between Sadie and Walt. Although little is new in this iteration of Riordan's universe, the climax soundly delivers, and the denouement hints at possible future overlap with foreign gods. Paging Percy Jackson? anita l. burkam

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Kirkus Reviews 2012 June #1
Riordan's Kane Chronicles trilogy concludes with a smash, as Carter and Sadie Kane once again try to save the world from the forces of Chaos. The giant Chaos snake Apophis and his rebel magician allies are on the rise. Luckily, Carter and Sadie Kane are back, ready to fight Apophis and restore Ma'at, the order of the universe. The ghost of an ancient psychotic magician offers help: Find the shadow of Apophis, capture it and use it for an execration spell that will pop the evil god so far into the Duat--the magical realm that coexists with our world--that he will never return. As in the previous volumes--The Red Pyramid (2010) and The Throne of Fire (2011)--the tale is told in the alternating and still-fresh voices of Sadie and Carter. Beyond the explosive action and fireworks, Riordan deftly develops the theme of the duality of the universe--order versus chaos, living a normal life versus risking the extraordinary, being protected by parents versus growing up and stepping out of their shadows. A rousing adventure with plenty of magic and food for thought. Other gods and future stories are hinted at in the conclusion; in the meantime, Riordan's The Kane Chronicles Survival Guide is available to maintain the spell. (glossary, list of gods and goddesses) (Fantasy. 10-14) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

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VOYA Reviews 2012 October
The third book in the Kane Chronicles series, The Serpent's Shadow opens with a sense of intrigue. An unnamed narrator claims to be transcribing audio recordings left behind by siblings, Carter and Sadie Cane. A mysterious introduction draws readers in right away--the narrator claims, "The tape arrived at my home in a charred box perforated with claw and teeth marks that my local zoologist could not identify." What adventure-loving teen could fail to be drawn in with such a start? As the story progresses, the siblings continue their study of ancient Egyptian writings and spells, both of which frequently come in handy as they fight against the wrath of evil gods and solicit the help of a few friendly ones. The fast pace and time travel will appeal to readers who like adventure reads. Not only does Riordan keep the plot moving along through 400 pages, he does a good job of balancing the story for new readers and fans of the series. There is enough backstory to keep first-time Riordan readers informed, but not so much that this tale gets bogged down. A solid adventure read, The Serpent's Shadow will have additional appeal to teens who are interested in Egyptian mythology.--Anna Foote 3Q 4P M Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.

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