Aphosis. Horus. Isis. Anubis. Set. Zia. Muffin. Ra. There are so many people and gods and half-cat-humans in The Kane Chronicles series… how can one keep up?!
Well, lucky for us, Rick Riordan has released The Kane Chronicles Surivival Guide — an all-inclusive guide on the Kanes, their friends, their enemies, and their frenemies. In addition to descriptions of the Kane family, there are also explanations of how each god and goddess came to be. I love reading about Sadie’s crush on Anubis in the series, but it’s nice to have an encyclopedia of information about Anubis all in one place… for instance, here’s a little excerpt:
“Anubis is the son of Nephthys and Osiris. He helped to preserve Osiris’s body after Set had killed him, and helped Osiris live again. This process created the first mummy and led to the practice of embalming, so it’s no surprise that Anubis is also known as the god of embalming and mummificiation.”
Oh, but back to Sadie’s crush on Anubis? Apparently he is kind of cute:
Is it just me, or does he look a wee bit like Percy Jackson?
I felt short, but that's nothing new.
Cute guys aside, my favorite section of the guide is Section Eight: Guide to Magical Places, which is now basically a checklist of “Places Nancy Wants to Visit.” I’ve already seen Cleopatra’s Needle in NYC, so that’s one down, about 30 more to go.
In Section Four: Heiroglyphs, Symbols and Commands, there’s an easy-to-follow guide on reading heirogylphs (for those of us who lack Sadie’s natural gift for reading ancient Egyptian languages). If only I’d had the guide when I visited Cleopatra’s Needle…
I also got a chance to review the interactive digital versions of the guide (there’s one for the NOOK and another for the iPad). There are a bunch more features, like audio interviews with Sadie and Carter, interactive quizzes, and animations. (You haven’t really seen the brooding Anubis unless you’ve seen him actually lit by moonlight with stirring storm clouds behind him).
Full disclosure: I work on NOOK digital books, but I’m not pressuring you to get this one! There are cool interactive elements like what I just described, but if you pick up the physical version, you get to put together the pyramid trading card:
Left: Pieces of the pyramid. Right, top: One side, combined. Right, bottom: The flip side of the combined pieces -- with the Egyptian gods!
Finished Product! A little creepy knowing their godly incarnations are hidden inside...
Also in the physical version: a very cool cover with a lenticular — where the image changes when you hold the book cover a certain way:
My only irk about the Survival Guide is… well… there aren’t that many survival tips. Like, uh, what happens when I actually encounter Aphosis or Desjardins? Obviously I would whip out my Kane Chronicles Survival Guide in this very-realistic-totally-would-happen-tomorrow scenario… and be able to inform my enemy all about the process of mummifying pets in ancient Egypt.
Nancy didn’t realize that Rick Riordan also released The Percy Jackson and the Olympians Ultimate Guide until she was doing research on the Kane Chronicles Survival Guide. Rick Riordan is truly a curse on her bank account (but a blessing on her bookshelf).