The Serpent’s Shadow by Rick Riordan

Sadie and Carter Kane have one last book to save the world from the Egyptian god of chaos, Apophis.  Just like the previous two books, The Serpent’s Shadow (Disney/Hyperion Books 2012) by Rick Riordan is packed with zany humor, eccentric gods, and nonstop action.  If anything can go wrong with their quest to save the world, it does go wrong.  The only way they can save the world is to do the impossible–and do it on a deadline in three day’s time.

Sadie and Carter take turns telling the story.  I enjoy their digs at each other and the opportunity to experience all the action from their different perspectives.  Some of my favorite characters are back.  Sadie is still torn between Anubis, the god of death, and Walt, the cursed & and dying magician.  Ra, the Sun-god, is still off his rocker.  Zia (the real one) is drawn to caring for Ra.  Carter, of course, is still attracted to Zia if he can just get up the nerve to do something about it.  Bast still puts out her claws if anyone threatens her kits.  Bes and Tawaret might even make it out of their eternal nursing home, if all goes according to plan.

I love the new characters Riordan introduces as well.  Sadie and Walt must survive their encounter with Neith, the goddess of the hunt.  I will never quite look at Jelly Babies the same way again.  My favorite, though, would have to be Setne, the ghost magician.  This dude is not only evil, he is the only one who can lead Sadie and Carter to the secret to defeating Apophis.  Setne has a history of escaping justice after death, and he just might do it again.  He might lead Sadie and Carter to where he hid his book of spells, or he might kill them along the way.  Even if he tells only lies, it is always a good story.

This is supposed to be the last book for the Kanes, but Riordan leaves hints that Sadie and Carter won’t necessarily live happily ever after.  New magic and new problems are sure to appear along side the work of rebuilding all that was lost while Apophis grew stronger.  After reading this series, I just wish I knew more about Egyptian mythology.  Somehow I neglected the gods of the pyramids on my mythology kick back in my younger days.

Now I just have to wait until fall for the release of the Mark of Athena, the third book in the Heroes of Olympus series.

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