Book 230: The Serpent’s Shadow (The Kane Chronicles #3) – Rick Riordan

Riordan, Rick - The Serpent's ShadowMy thoughts still stand from the first two novels. This series is not as great as the other two of Riordan’s series, the publisher really should have invested in a better copy editor and I’m still not convinced about the ‘transcription’ part of the story (it brought the author into the story in a way that Percy Jackson didn’t). Aside from that, this was a great ending to a mediocre trilogy.

The Serpent’s Shadow picks up right where The Throne of Fire ends. Looking back on my reviews of it and The Red Pyramid, I’m not sure what holes in the plot I referred to were but it didn’t feel like there was anything missing from this third book from the second. A lot of the characters that I remembered and enjoyed from the first two books made appearances in this novel and there were even a few introductions of new characters, although fleeting. Riordan seemed to have mastered the Sadie/Carter duality in this novel so that was great and I enjoyed their love interests although the parallel of the two was a bit weird and could be misconstrued as lazy.

Where the weakness comes out with this novel is that I believe Riordan, or his publisher, decided this novel was going to be the last in the series and as such he had to wrap up a lot of the character’s stories and provide plenty of hints at a potential future merger with the Percy Jackson universe. When I say plenty, I mean hints are dropped left and right throughout the last half of the novel. And I won’t lie, I am interested in a crossover!

It is very hard to say which of the Carter siblings I liked more. I liked both for different reasons. I did enjoy the love triangle between Sadie, Walt and Anubis and how it ended was perfect even if it was a bit freaky (especially told from Sadie’s perspective), but I think Carter’s adorkableness and hesitancy with Zia made him edge Sadie out, but barely. Where Riordan shows off his prowess is in the creation of the minor characters. I’ve said this about his other novels and it’s no different in this novel, Riordan writes great minor characters.

The only problem is that in this novel they are given so little time that you don’t get to know them and they don’t get to develop. Aside from the main love interests, Zia for Carter and Walt and Anubis for Sadie and a few of the gods, many of the other characters are briefly introduced and disappear. If Riordan returns to this portion of the mythological universe, I hope he devotes more time to the numerous other magicians following the god’s path.

Recommendation: If you’re REALLY interested in Egyptian mythology and modern interpretation you might enjoy this; if you love action then you’ll definitely enjoy this; if you love Riordan you’ll more than likely enjoy this; anything outside of those three you might want to give it a pass as it is three books.

Opening Line: “Sadie Kane here.”

Closing Line: “Brooklyn House is open for business.” (Whited out.)


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