The Kane Chronicles: The Serpent’s Shadow by Rick Riordan: A Review

Olivia Yao. Three Moons

The Story
The third and final book in the Kane Chronicles, The Serpent’s Shadow is the most exciting one. Carter and Sadie Kane are at the peak of their powers, have trained a group of kids who can also harness the power of the Egyptian gods, and are ready to defeat Apophis, the god of chaos.

Narrated in turns by brother and sister Carter and Sadie Kane, the story opens with the siblings and their friends trying to retrieve a scroll to help them defeat Apophis. However, they fail and must find another way to stop the god before the world comes to an end forever.

At the same time, Carter and Sadie need to sort out their love lives as well. Carter is in love with Zia Rashid, who seems to have become the apple of the eye of the senile sun god Ra (whom they need to restore to his former glory in order to fully defeat chaos), while Sadie is torn between her friend Walt who has to live with a deadly family curse and Anubis, the boy god of funerals and death. How can the Kanes save the world and find love at the same time?  

The Standouts

The narration
Each chapter is told by either Sadie or Carter. It’s quite awesome how Riordan shifts perspectives between a teenage boy and a teenage girl—one from America and the other from the United Kingdom. He does it so well that it’s believable, entertaining, and not cliché at all. Plus, Sadie is so funny, you’ll look forward to the way she narrates as much as you’ll want to know what happens next in the story.

The idea of the Kanes entrusting the transcript of their recordings to the author is another interesting part of the story. It makes the readers feel as if this could possibly be happening underneath their noses. 

Egyptian mythology

Riordan’s very famous Percy Jackson and the Olympians series tackles Greek mythology that most readers are familiar with. The Kane Chronicles, on the other hand, are about Egyptian mythology, which is interesting because it isn’t as well known as that of the Greeks. At the same time, it can also be less exciting because we aren’t as well versed in it. However, being exposed to something new is always a good thing.  

The Letdowns

The recordings
As each chapter has been “previously recorded,” you know that no matter what the characters say, they have survived whatever disaster they are in because they were able to take a break and record what had happened to them. It takes some of the excitement out of the story. But the story is so full of action that taking a little bit out of it isn’t that big a deal really.

Bookshelf Meter: 4.5 stars

Bookshelf Meter:
1 star – Don’t even bother.
2 stars – Since there’s nothing else to read…
3 stars – Worth borrowing from a friend, but not buying your own
4 stars – Deserves a spot on your nightstand.
5 stars – Grab this book now and forget the one you’re reading!

Available at Fully Booked and National Book Store


Olivia Yao has been writing ever since she can remember. She has written for health, teen, parenting, and children's magazines. Her latest endeavor is being a mom to her three-year-old daughter—her toughest assignment yet.