The Serpent’s Shadow (Kane Chronicles Book 3) – Cover Release!

January 15th, 2012 by

What better way to ring in the New Year than to scrutinize the latest and final book cover of Rick Riordan’s Kane Chronicles series, for The Serpent’s Shadow? Check out the beautiful, newly released cover by illustrator John Rocco:

(Click to see the cover larger, so you can study each pixel individually!)

Based on previous posts, you know the drill. I’ll put out my guesses about the final installment, and you should leave YOUR thoughts on the cover in the comments below!

First, an official description of the book from the Kane Chronicles website:

He’s b-a-a-ack! Despite their best efforts, Carter and Sade Kane can’t seem to keep Apophis, the chaos snake, down. Now Apophis is threatening to plunge the world into eternal darkness, and the Kanes are faced with the impossible task of having to destroy him once and for all. Unfortunately, the magicians of the House of Life are on the brink of civil war, the gods are divided, and the young initiates of Brooklyn House stand almost alone against the forces of chaos.

Whoa. That is quite a lot to digest from one paragraph! Let me collect my thoughts…

  • First, I just love the color scheme of the whole series: It goes from dark rust red, to bright purple, to brilliant blue. It reminds me of different types of flames.
  • Apparently Rick Riordan himself claims that this is his favorite cover yet.
  • Carter stands on the left, ready to use the Crook and Flail of Ra, the weapon he used after he lost his khopesh.
  • So then that’s probably Sadie standing on the ledge, but I can’t really make out if she’s doing anything — is she ready to jump in or holding on for dear life?
  • What is this body of water Carter and Sadie are standing in front of? Does it look like to anyone else that the rocks and boulders are creating a path across the water?
  • A spiky serpent shadow (presumably the super duper evil Aphosis, God of Chaos) looms ominously in the distance.
  • Floating above and around the obelisk (is it the Washington Monument in D.C., or a different one?) are white birds, which look comforting to me for some reason. Perhaps some combat avatars? They don’t look like Carter’s falcon form…
  • I can’t make out any of the symbols on the obelisk, so I’m guessing they’re intentionally drawn to be vague.
  • Hey, what’s that shape above the obelisk? Let me take a closer — OMG IT’S A REALLY CREEPY GIANT EYE STARING RIGHT AT ME. Okay, it’s probably staring at Carter and Sadie. But still, really creepy.

So, Kidsmomo readers, what do you think of the newest (and sadly, last*) cover for The Kane Chronicles? I can’t wait to follow Carter and Sadie’s adventures once more on May 1, when The Serpent’s Shadow comes out!

Meanwhile, you can keep busy until then by reading a preview of The Serpent’s Shadow from the official website, maybe a couple (hundred) times…

— Nancy

As you can tell, Nancy is not a fan of creepy giant eyes.

More about Nancy »



*Unless Rick Riordan writes another book/series with Kane Chronicles characters. He IS a writing machine, after all!

Meet John Rocco, Rick Riordan’s Personal Illustrator

March 4th, 2010 by

John Rocco and The Lightning Thief Deluxe Edition

Children's book illustrator John Rocco, with The Lightning Thief Deluxe Edition.

It’s been Percy Jackson madness here on Kidsmomo (literal madness — have you heard our Kidsmomo Karaoke Tribute to PJ?) so I’m gonna write a serious blog post about some serious Percy Jackson stuff.


And now that I’m done gloating (yes, very immature of me), I’ll get to the good stuff — at the event (which was held at a bookstore in Manhattan), Percy Jackson editor Jennifer Besser talked about how the original cover illustrations weren’t really working, and they then found John Rocco, illustrator extraordinaire!

Maybe “personal illustrator” to Rick Riordan is an exaggeration, but John Rocco has designed all five covers of the Percy Jackson series and he’s also working on the new Kane Chronicles series.  I made sure to capture as much as possible on video:

John talking about how he came up with the idea for the cover of The Lightning Thief:

For aspiring artists: his process is really interesting! Check out all the different versions of The Titan’s Curse:

John also took some tough questions from the audience…

And some questions led to some DRAMA!

Some more goodies from John Rocco and Jennifer Besser:

  • The new Camp Half-Blood series by Rick Riordan will be released in October 2010!
  • John enjoyed working on The Last Olympian cover the most, and often went to the Empire State Building for inspiration.
  • John also worked on the new Rick Riordan series The Kane Chronicles, and afterwards I bugged him about the water tower on the cover of The Red Pyramid — and turns out it’s not significant in the story. (I guess I went a little overboard scrutinizing the cover!)

— Nancy