Sisters of the Snake | Sasha Nanua and Sarena Nanua


Sisters of the Snake by Sasha Nanua and Sarena Nanua

Coming June 15, 2021 from HarperTeen; 512 pages

Content Warnings: Murder, emotional manipulation, death of a loved one, blood and gore, snakes, parental abuse

About the Authors: “Sarena Nanua and Sasha Nanua are twin sisters living in Ontario, Canada. Born on Diwali ten minutes apart from each other, they grew up loving stories about twins and magic, and began writing books together when they were nine years old. They are graduates of the English and Professional Writing programs at the University of Toronto and are also the authors of The Pendant Trilogy. Their next novel, SISTERS OF THE SNAKE, comes out June 15, 2021 from HarperTeen. They are represented by Pete Knapp at Park & Fine Literary and Media.” (Bio taken from the authors’ website)

Find Sasha Nanua and Sarena Nanua on the following platforms: 

“We are sisters. We are branches from one tree, and though we’ve grown in opposing directions, we will always share the same roots.”

Ria and Rani lead completely different lives: Ria lives on the streets and steals to survive, while Princess Rani spends her days locked in the palace and longing to see the world outside. They don’t know of each other’s existence, and they never expected to meet—until a heist Ria pulls in the palace goes very wrong, and their two worlds collide. In that instant, they realize that they are unmistakably identical—and everything changes. Suddenly, both girls see a way to get what they each want, so they decide to swap places. But danger lurks in every corner, and with a war fast approaching, the sisters must use all their wits and talents if they want to save those they love—and their kingdom—in time. 

This book had great potential, but in my opinion, it just fell short. While I loved the representation and the concept of twins from two very different worlds, it was hard for me to really connect to the book because of pacing and character development issues. Some of the most important scenes felt rushed to me, lessening their emotional impact, and quite a few of the characters—especially the two love interests—seemed a bit flat and one-dimensional. Although Ria and Rani are both fun characters and had fantastic growth arcs throughout the story, it was somewhat difficult for me to focus on both of their journeys at the same time. At some points, it felt as if I were reading two completely separate plots simultaneously. However, despite these flaws, there were elements of the book that I enjoyed, namely the descriptions of food (don’t read this book on an empty stomach!) and the character of Shima (I never realized a snake could be so sarcastic!). The magic system is also quite fascinating and well-developed. Overall, Sisters of the Snake is a fun and captivating story that fans of twin shenanigans and magical adventures will enjoy.

Sisters of the Snake releases on June 15, 2021.

(Pine Reads Review would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for sending us an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Any quotes are taken from an advanced copy and may be subject to change upon final publication.)

PRR Assistant Director, Wendy Waltrip