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Mar. 9th, 2018


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Title: The Serpent's Secret (Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond #1)
Author: Sayantani DasGupta
Format: Epub
Rating: 4/5
Status: Finished
Reading Date: March 8, 2018 to March 9, 2018

(But she doesn’t know it yet.)

On the morning of her twelfth birthday, Kiranmala is just a regular sixth grader living in Parsippany, New Jersey… until her parents mysteriously vanish later that day and a rakkhosh demon slams through her kitchen, determined to eat her alive. Turns out there might be some truth to her parents’ fantastical stories—like how Kiranmala is a real Indian princess—and a wealth of secrets about her origin they've kept hidden.

To complicate matters, two crushworthy Indian princes ring her doorbell, insisting they’re here to rescue her. Suddenly, Kiran is swept into another dimension full of magic, winged horses, moving maps, and annoying, talking birds. There she must solve riddles and slay demons all while avoiding the Serpent King of the underworld (who may or may not want to kill her) and the rakkhosh queen (who definitely does) in order to find her parents and basically save New Jersey, her entire world, and everything beyond it…
Book Review: Are you a fan of the Percy Jackson series?

Then this series may just be for you.

Meet Kiran. A normal 12-year-old girl whom has been living a relatively normal life in New Jersey. That is until her birthday on Halloween. Unfortunately on this day, she comes home to find her parents missing and rakkhosh wanting to make her his dinner. She is rescued by two Princes whom take her on a journey to find her missing parents and where she learns that all those Halloweens where her parents dressed her as a Princess were really no joke.

When I first saw this and read the blurb, my first thoughts of how similar this may be to the Percy Jackson series. Instead of a hero, we have a heroine. Instead of Greek and Roman Mythology, we get Indian Mythology. Our heroine is twelve and trying to fit into two different cultures - American and Indian. For her, she is just a normal kid who enjoys the normalcy of her life (with the exception of her parents always dressing her up as an Princess for Halloween). She is immature still and a bit spoiled. Yet when her parents disappear, a monster and two princes appear, she has no choice but to believe what they have to offer her - help in finding her parents. At first when she learns that she is a real princess, she starts to understand all those reasonings her mother would dress her up as a Princess. It was because she really was one and now the magical bubble that had been placed around her to keep her safe has expired, she has to go on this adventure to retrieve the ones who have raised her.

Kiran's change isn't quite noticable. After all, she was living this normal life and suddenly she is on the run from monsters and trying to find her parents. This changes her completely. She goes from being spoiled and immature to a kick-ass heroine. She learns that all those jokes she had been told by her friends have come in handy as she navigates through this new world. On top of all that, she has two crush-worthy princes who are along for the right.

As for the world building, I am impressed. This world is beautiful and filled with tons of mythology. I am in love with this world. I want to dive into this world and live right smack in the middle of it because who wouldn't?

The only downside to this book is that it feels a bit like Percy Jackson. I don't mind this but lately these books seem to becoming a trend in the middle school/children's books. I understand that Harry Potter and Percy Jackson have become huge influences with authors because they believe that such settings will draw in more readers but at the same time, I would like to see some authors break away from this. This book can stand on its own, I believe it will. It isn't like Percy Jackson but it does have its similar elements mixed in. Still, I really have enjoyed Kiran and her story and I am quite looking forward to reading her next adventure in the second book of this series.