Distinct settings, great writing, and a strong character give readers lots to enjoy!!

Summary:

Kiranmala (aka Kiran) lives a normal life in New Jersey. Until her 12th birthday. Then it all changes. Her parents go missing and out of thin air come brothers Lal and Neel, two handsome princes who want to help her and an ancient rakkhosh demon who wants to kill her. The only thing Kiran salvages is a birthday card from her parents that says "trust the princes." So she flies with them on their winged horses to a kindgom where she learns about her family origins: she is a princess and her biological father is the infamous Serpent King.

Still, she is intent on finding her missing New Jersy parents, who, it turns out are trapped in another dimension. Tuntuni, a comedic talking bird, gives her a riddle to solve that leads her on an adventure to find them. Kiranand the princes travel from place to place, facing one danger after another to solve the riddles. Will she ever reconnect with the parents she's known all her ilfe?

Teen Student Reviewer (15):
I like this book because it introduces me to Indian culture (food, currency) and Bengali mythological stories incorporated into this fantasy. The very many distinct settings make it a unique and intriguing read, too. Although I personally found Tuntani’s puns way too cheesy, the book is well written. It has a complex plot that ties into a great conclusion and doea a nice job in capturing young love. Princes Lal and Neel have interesting personalities. One is brave and and the other is broody. One is smiley, the other one is perfect;. With all of the tenstion and family drama, the story is entertaining.

My only complaint abot the book is that it feels a little too fast paced. But I would still recommending buying it. The cultural exposure is noteworthy and worth having the book to learn about it. The story is unique and fun, and the mood set by the plot and the themes are different than most middle grade and young adult novels.


Reader Enjoyment Factors:

A strong, independent-minded girl leads the charge in this fantasy adventure that is built on Bengali myths. If you loved Percy Jackson and similar myth-based series, you are in for a treat ... and books you won't be able to put down!

Content Awareness Factors:

There is mild violence in this book, like dirty killing demons, but it isn’t too gruesome with the comedy thrown in. Kiranmala also experiences a mild teen crush.


Type of Book:
This middle-grade fantasy introduces readers to Indian myth through the adventures of its main character.
Educational Themes:

Among the many educational themes in this book are the importance of family and what makes someone part of your family. It is also about friendship and the ways you can hurt the relationships in your life. Perseverance is big for Kiranmala. Although things seem hopeless, she still tries hard to find her parents and figure out about her past. 

The biggest factor educational value is the opportunity to explore Indian and Bengali culture. Do readers recognize myths or folklore from other cultures in this story? Which seem truly unique tot his book.

Reading Level:
5.2
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
10 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
9 and Up
Age of child:
Teen student volunteer, reviewer age: 15
Purchase Recommendation:
Buy. Adventure and fantasy lovers will find the setting fascinating and re-read these books just as they did Percy Jackson and Harry Potter.

Title The Serpent's Secret
About

Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond, Book 1

Author Sayantani DasGupta
Publisher Scholastic Press © 2018
ISBN 9781338185706
Material Hard Cover
Cost $17.99
Genres Family, Fantasy
Reminder: Cover images, amazon.com and indiebound.org links are affiliate links. The Reading Tub can earn income via purchases made via these links. 100% of any income goes directly to our literacy mission.

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