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The Kane Chronicles is a book series written by Rick Riordan, about two siblings, Carter and Sadie Kane, who find out that they're descendants of Ancient Egyptian magicians and also two lines of pharaohs. The siblings were raised apart most of their life after their mother died, Carter traveling the world with their father, famous Egyptologist Julius Kane, and Sadie living with their grandparents in England. They're brought together on Christmas Eve when their dad tries to "set things right." However, things go horribly wrong and the two are sent on a mission to save their father and stop Set, the Egyptian god of Chaos, from ruling the world. The series consists of The Red Pyramid, The Throne of Fire, and The Serpent's Shadow, released on May 1st, 2012.

A graphic novel of The Red Pyramid has been announced for May, 2012. See here.

Tropes used in The Kane Chronicles include:
  • Action Girl: Sadie, Zia, Neith, and Bast. To an extent, Tawaret.
  • All Myths Are True: In this case, Egyptian and a hint of Percy Jackson's Greek.
  • Back From the Dead: Carter and Sadie think their dad was trying to bring their mother back. That wasn't completely true.

 Bast, as a gift from the gods, at the end.

    • Walt appears to do this, but he actually just hosted Anubis at the last minute.
  • Badass Army: Set's army of demons.
    • Sarah Jacobi's "hit squad" of magicians.
  • Badass Boast: "I am a magician of the house of life. We are trained to fight gods."
  • Badass Bookworm: Carter, Julius, and Amos.
  • Badass Longcoat: Walt/Anubis gets one at the end of The Serpent's Shadow.
  • Beethoven Was an Alien Spy: Elvis was a magician.
  • Big Applesauce: Amos' mansion is in Brooklyn. "Manhattan has other problems."
  • Big Bad: Set and later Apophis.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Desjardins seems to be this at least once per book. Also counts as Brought Down to Badass, as he manages to execrate Apophis in the second book.
  • Body and Host: When a magician is being possessed by a god they are known as "hosts" or "godlings". Can have shades of body snatching, as the god is sometimes able to forcibly take control of their host's body.
  • Book Dumb: Sadie, much to Carter's dismay.
  • But Not Too Black: While both Carter and Sadie are biracial, Sadie is described as having lighter skin and hair. Most people don't realize they are family when they first meet them.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Sadie was born and raised in America until age 6, where she was moved to England to live with her grandparents.
  • Brother-Sister Team: Carter and Sadie. Having been separated for around six years prior to the beginning of the story, it takes them a little while to get into the hang of things, but they do.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Walt never manages to explain just what he and Anubis have been discussing but that's mostly Sadie's fault.

  Anubis: Couldn't get a word in edgewise?"

  • Card-Carrying Villain: In The Serpent's Shadow, Apophis leaves the Egyptian hieroglyph for chaos wherever he destroys a Nome.
  • The Cavalry: In the third book, the elderly and mostly senile gods from the House of Rest, along with Tawaret and the newly restored Bes charge a horde of demons to rescue the main heroes.
  • The Chessmaster: Apophis. How much? He doesn't even appear until the end of the book and he very nearly tricks Set-a god of Chaos-into blowing up the world for him.
    • Iskandar is the good version.
  • Cool Sword: Carter's khopesh.
  • Crossover Cosmology: Although the book only focuses on the Egyptian gods, Thoth mentions that he gets mistaken for the Greek god Hermes and having meet him and Amos mentions that Manhattan has its own gods, a reference to the Greek gods from Percy Jackson and The Olympians.
    • Monsters also bite it the same way. Turn into sand upon their death but now we know why it takes a bit to come back.
    • The Kane Chronicles also have something similar to PJO's Mist, causing monsters and supernatural items to be invisible or to appear as ordinary animals or objects.
    • Moses also makes an appearance in the history hallway.
    • At the beginning of The Throne Of Fire, Carter mentions that he's seen winged horses across the river in Manhattan.
    • In The Serpent's Shadow problems from other gods are predicted to come.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sadie and Horus.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Zia, arguably Sadie
  • Deus Ex Machina: Bast returning at the end, but justified in that it was actually done by gods.
  • Divine Assistance: Horis, Isis, Bast, Bes, and on occasion, other gods.
  • Divine Parentage: Carter and Sadie, obviously. The Blood of the Pharoahs.
    • Kind of. The gods prefer to take host from certain bloodlines with powerful magic that usually contain at least one pharaoh at some point in time or another. But it's unclear if the gods preferred them because they were pharaohs or if they ended up becoming pharaohs specifically because they could host the gods.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Julius is described as being bald, with a goatee. His last name is Kane. He ends up ascending to a higher plane of existence. Hmmm...
  • Dreaming of Times Gone By
  • Eldritch Abomination: Apophis, and to a lesser extent, the Set Animal.
    • Physically, Apophis is a mile-long red snake whose presence melts people's senses, whatever that means. He can also possess people and at one point says he is everywhere.
  • Eldritch Location: The Duat.
  • Eye Scream / Facial Horror: What happened to Menshikov when he tried and failed to awaken Ra.
  • Expy: The series is very similar to Percy Jackson and The Olympians, another series by the same author. One who has read both can easily tell that the characters are alike (apart from the same universe and the same writing style).
    • You have a smart, but shy Carter as Annabeth. A Book Dumb (but not stupid) and sarcastic Sadie as Percy (except she is more outgoing). Anubis also is the god of the afterlife as Nico is the son of the god of death and both lived... for a very long time.
  • French Jerk: Desjardins. Although not so much when he execrates Apophis, thus sacrficing his life to to so.
  • Fighting a Shadow: Shabtis can be used to create "stand ins" for real magicians. The Zia after the museum incident is also one. The real one is hidden. In "Throne of Fire" she's saved from The Place of Red Sands.
    • You can also use shadows for more effective execration.
  • Fighting From the Inside: Amos, trying to warn Carter and Sadie that he was really Set's host.
  • Head-in-The-Sand Management: Desjardins spends most of the book following the Cornelius Fudge school of crisis management; eventually he graduates to merely Divided We Fall.
  • Heroic Albino: Philip of Macedonia.
  • Heroic BSOD: When Amos is freed from his possession from Set in the first book, he is so traumatized, he can't utter a single sentence. Makes you wonder just how Set managed to posses the poor dude. Thankfully, he recovers.
  • Heroic Lineage
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Bast, Ruby Kane, Julius Kane, Desjardins.
  • Historical Villain Upgrade: The real Setne was a highly respected religious/political figure in Ancient Egypt, with several myths written about him in which he is the hero.
  • Idiot Hero: Sadie isn't nearly as dumb as other examples, but she's almost as reckless.
  • I Know Your True Name: This is how the heroes manage to enslave Set. Also how Sadie manages to cure Carter of poisoning.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: Set: "'The complete Set!' That's funny!"
    • In the middle of an evil monologue, no less.
    • In The Throne of Fire:

 "It's your best bet," [Bes] said.

"Bes bet?" Khonsu chuckled. "Nice!"

    • When they met in person, Sadie said Anubis was "drop dead gorgeous."
    • Hapi pills in The Serpent's Shadow.
  • Insult Backfire:

 Carter: (About Sekhemet) She's almost as annoying as you.

Horus: Impossible. No one bests Horus.

  • In Which a Trope Is Described: Similar to Percy Jackson, the titles are like this.
    • 'Men Ask For Directions (and Other Signs of the Apocalypse)' is probably the best of these.
  • I Gave My Word: Bast, promising she'd protect Sadie. Led to her Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Kid Hero: Carter, Sadie, Zia, and all the kids at Brooklyn House.
  • Language of Magic: It's Ancient Egyptian in this case.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Bes's trademark superpower is the ability to distort his face hideously to scare his enemies. It works. Gah.
  • Male Gaze: Carter finds it difficult to look the overendowed hippopatamus goddess Tawaret in the face.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Apophis
  • Marked to Die: Julius knew he would be possessed by Osiris, and eventually end up "dead" as the host for the Lord of the Dead. Walt's family is also cursed to die young and using magic speeds up the process.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Bast, a cat goddess.
  • Monkeys on a Typewriter: Actually ibises.
  • Name of Cain
  • Narrative Profanity Filter: "The following is a transcript of a digital recording... Background noises such as scuffling, hitting, and cursing by the two speakers have not been transcribed."
    • In Throne of Fire, characters "spewing lots of very creative curses" almost becomes a running gag.
  • Nice Job Breaking It Carter: In the end, Apophis being destroyed also causes the gods to retreat, because of some sort of Yin-Yang system.
  • Nightmare Face: A heroic example in Bes[1], and two villainous examples in Menshikov and Face of Horror.
  • Noodle Incident: Carter and Sadie's actions while recording are often briefly described as such.
    • Also, the "Spatula Incident," a past fight between Carter and Sadie's father and their maternal grandparents.
    • And the time that their Julius punched his father-in-law in the face.
  • No Such Thing as Wizard Jesus: Averted in another important religious figure- it is made very clear that Moses was actually a magician. On top of that, a comment from Bes in The Throne of Fire suggests that one of his miracles, the parting of the Red Sea, was something any magician from Ancient Egypt could've done.
    • Although gods are manifestly real, All Myths Are True, and Moses was apparently a badass enough wizard that he's the only outsider ever to best the House of Life, so it certainly be said to work anyway.
      • Additionally, it is implied that "other magic" is just how the Egyptians describe the power of foreign gods.
  • Official Couple: Julius and Ruby, Carter and Zia, Sadie and Walt/Anubis, and Bes and Tawaret.
  • Oh My Gods: Averted as Sadie frequently says "Oh my God," and "God," throughout the book, but played straight with Bast and others more familiar with Ancient Egypt.
  • Power Trio: Carter and Sadie along with Bast, Zia, Amos...
  • Pre-Ass-Kicking One-Liner: Sadly, most of it is a spoiler, but...

 Carter: I am Carter Kane, Blood of the Pharaohs, Eye of Horus. And now, Set--brother, uncle, traitor--, I'm going to crush you like a gnat.

  • Psychic Dreams for Everyone: Both Carter and Sadie have ba trips, often seeing things they wished they hadn't.
  • Red Herring: Set tricks Carter and Sadie into thinking that Desjardins is his host. It's really Amos.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni/Sibling Yin-Yang: It can actually go either way. Normally, Sadie, being more brash in contrast to reserved and bookish Carter, clearly seems to be the red. However, Carter shows more of the impulsiveness seen in the "red" when in combat partially due to being the host of the warrior god Horus.
  • Sadly Mythtaken: In all fairness, most of the liberties taken with the myths were probably to make the whole thing less...incestuous, but there is one mistake: Ammit the Devourer should be female.
    • This is actually lampshaded in The Serpent's Shadow.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: When Julius attempted to summon Osiris, he released him along with his four siblings, one of which was Set.
  • Sequel Hook: "Should further recordings fall into my hands, I will relay the information."
  • Shared Universe: The references under Crossover Cosmology imply that the book is set in the same universe as the Percy Jackson and The Olympians series.
    • Word of God states that they are in the same universe, and that the events of The Red Pyramid happen almost directly after the events of The Last Olympian.
      • Though Rick Riordan needs to pay more attention to his timelines and explosions. The Williamsburg Bridge is destroyed in The Last Olympian, but Our Heroes drive over it in The Red Pyramid. Possibly The Red Pyramid and Throne of Fire take place the winter and spring before the battle of Manhattan and The Serpent's Shadow the fall after.
    • In that case, does Sadie having carried a letter between Nut and Geb count as Nice Job Breaking It, Hero given the Gaia's Vengeance of the new Olympians series?
      • No, because the Gaia's Vengeance is with a goddess, not a god. The Greek/Roman gods and the Egyptian gods seem to be totally different people.
      • The Heroes of Olympus shows that gods can have different aspects in other cultures, and that Mist keeps them apart as far as mortals are concerned. The Egyptian gods are probably extremely powerful monsters from the perspectives of the Greeks, but Nut, Geb, and their forced separation are almost exactly like the separation of Gaia and Ouranos. Apothis is rising, managed to manipulate even Set, and is trying to eat the world: why should he only be affecting one set of gods?
        • The Nut/Geb and Gaia/Ouranos separation isn't all that the same. Gaia gave her son (Kronos) a weapon so he could kill Ouranos. I don't see that happening with Nut and Geb. Gaia's Vengeance is because she hates the fact that the gods killed her children the titans. Other than that I agree, Apothis is probably the whole reason behind everything.
    • Drew and Lacy, daughters of Aphrodite, go to the same school as Sadie and the other magicians of Brooklyn House. Sadie comments that Lacy mentioned their 'summer camp' that they attended. She also mentions investigating reports of magic activity on Long Island.
  • Shipper on Deck: Sadie, to Carter and Zia.
  • Shout-Out: To Percy Jackson, of course. "Manhattan has other problems. Other gods. It's best we stay separate."
    • There's also the incident where they meet Thoth, who complains about how he used to get confused with Hermes.
    • Carter also sees a winged horse that he thought was an illusion because of the magic security system. This Troper doesn't think so.
    • During a fight with some water demons in the Nile, Carter wishes to himself that he had the powers of a sea god.
    • Also to Doctor Who as one of Sadie's shabti was a thermos with googly eyes that yelled Exterminate! She was raised in England. Plus she mentions Jelly Babys later on.
    • And the other other work that involves cows with lasers is Gunnerkrigg Court.
    • Not sure if this is a proper shout-out, but Anubis wears Arcade Fire and The Dead Weather t-shirts.
    • Sadie listens to the music of Adele.
  • So Proud of You: Julius and Ruby at the end.
  • Summon to Hand
  • Magician School: The training of young magicians in the First Nome.
  • Khopesh And Sorcerer: Carter and Sadie are starting to look like this.
  • Talk About the Weather
  • Talking in Your Dreams
  • Team Mom: Bast.
  • Together in Death: Julius(Osiris) and Ruby Kane.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Quite often, Sadie thinks this of her brother, rather hypocritically.
  • Tsundere: Sadie is just Type A all the way, especially around Anubis.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Bast, in the end. Also....

 Sadie: You got your head cut off?

Isis: I got better.

 Sadie: You're a beast!

Set: Really? Me?

Notes

  1. BOO!!
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