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City of the Plague God

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  276 ratings  ·  214 reviews
Best-selling author Rick Riordan presents CITY OF THE PLAGUE GOD, an adventure based on ancient Mesopotamian mythology written by Sarwat Chadda, author of the Ash Mistry series. Characters from the Epic of Gilgamesh populate this high-stakes contemporary adventure in which all of Manhattan is threatened by the ancient god of plagues.

Thirteen-year-old Sik wants a simple lif
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published January 12th 2021 by Rick Riordan Presents
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Sarwat Chadda Hi! Stand alone right now. If the book does well that there will be others! I have such plans...
Sarwat Chadda Lots of reading, mainly! Plus the British Museum has a major permanent exhibit and gives plenty of talks and tours. I attended the LCANE events over t…moreLots of reading, mainly! Plus the British Museum has a major permanent exhibit and gives plenty of talks and tours. I attended the LCANE events over the year as well and they were amazing! Plus there was a special exhibit on Ashurbanipal, which was quite well timed. That really added a lot more historical detail to the tale.(less)

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Average rating 4.37  · 
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Rick Riordan
Dec 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
You Want Mythology? Let’s Get Old School!

It doesn’t get any more ‘Old School’ than Mesopotamia.

Without a doubt, the stories of Sumer, Babylon and the rest of the Fertile Crescent are my favorite myths that I’ve never written about. Fortunately, I don’t have to. Sarwat Chadda knows the stories better than I do, and he is about to take you on a thrill ride you will never forget!

There is so much to love about Mesopotamian mythology. Just the word ziggurat. Is there any cooler word? When I was a ki
Y'all, I have been excited about this book since I first heard about it in January of 2019.

Today, I received an ARC. It's a great day!

Thank you so much to Disney Publishing and Rick Riordan Presents.

Every book released under this imprint has been incredible. I am sure this one will be no different.


Things that attract me to this book include, but are not limited to:

1. A Muslim boy, born-and-raised in NYC.
2. The epic hero, Gilgamesh.
3. Sprinkles of Mesopotamian lore.
4. Saving Manhattan
The Artisan Geek
Nov 27, 2019 marked it as to-read
We have a cover folks and she's a beauty!!! So excited!!!!!

Gosh! It's hard not to stan this imprint! I mean, Mesopotamian mythology and a muslim boy as main character?! SIGN ME UP!

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This was charming and witty, with complex characters, action-packed adventures and most importantly - CATS. Serious topics such as discrimination and immigration were covered and deftly handled.
The writing and plot were a bit choppy at times but it did not deter me from enjoying it. Overall, I highly recommend!
Natasha Ngan
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Bold, brave, and full of surprises! I couldn't stop turning the pages. Chadda balances an action-packed story with his trademark humour and a deft handling of Sik's immigrant identity that feels relevant and important in today's world. ...more
Dec 16, 2020 marked it as on-hold
Shelves: 2021, arcs
YAYYYYYY ! Thank you NetGalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

(Confession: I am OBSESSED with all world mythologies. Honestly obsessed. I feel that well written books based upon mythology transcend age, and so many other factors; I know that they do, because of the Rick Riordan Presents imprint. I cannot wait to slice open a pocket between universes & step into this one! Yes, yes, I know to close it afterwards or mess with the fabr
Nov 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A plague takes over the city of Manhattan and Sik has to take down the evil God Nergal to save the world. If only someone could do that to save us from Covid because I am starting to lose my mind ya’ll. I digress.

Reading City of Plague God unlocked a memory of me back in 6th or 7th grade learning about the history of Mesopotamia. We didn’t learn too much about the mythology so I found it super interesting to get some background on it. Chadda definitely did his research!

I love the characters an
Nov 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received an eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I honestly cannot even remember how I came across this book, but I know I was instantly sold when I read it would be inspired by ancient Mesopotamian mythology. This sounded so unique that I instantly preordered it. I also have really enjoyed what I have read from the Rick Riordan Presents series, so I knew this would be amazing. I am incredibly grateful for actually getting an eARC.

Sarwat Chadda’s City of the Plague God follows
rachel ☾
the best rick riordan presents since aru shah

Trigger warnings for (view spoiler)
Jan 03, 2021 rated it really liked it
This is my second of the Rick Riordan Presents books, and I'm really enjoying these so far. City of the Plague God was intriguing, creative, and heartbreaking. This is perfect for Percy Jackson fans.

CW - death of a sibling, racism, Islamophobia, bullying
this cover is absolutely gorgeous
Rameela (Star)
Dec 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Initial thoughts: this had all the charm and wit of an RRP book and I loved the references to mythology and history and just the whole unapologetically Iraqi and Muslim rep!
Samm | Sassenach the Book Wizard
Aug 13, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2021
I sure hope Rick is doing something cool with all this money he's shaking out of me with his Imprint! ...more
Dec 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I don't even know where to begin. I absolutely adored this book and winded up speeding through it. As someone who absolutely adores stories based in Greek and Roman myths, it was great to get the opportunity to learn about mythology that I wasn't overly familiar with. You better believe, I'll be looking into Mesopotamian myths as soon as I get the chance.

City of the Plague God follows Sik, a thirteen year old Muslim boy who is dealing with the grief of losing his older brother and the pressures
Kenzie The Dragon Queen
December 22nd 2020

4 stars

I think it is wonderful that Rick Riordan's imprint is supporting amazing POC authors and their interesting stories. This is the type of book that grabs your attention right away and keeps it there by emotionally connecting you with its world and characters.

I thought the mythology was fascinating, and it was written by a fresh and talented yet highly aware voice. The book addresses many topics ranging from loss to Islamaphobia. Important topics are brought up and weaved
Sabina Khan
Oct 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
City of the Plague God was everything I ever wanted as a brown, Muslim kid growing up, reading books where the heroes never, ever looked like me. I loved everything about this story, from the mythology and adventure to the humour and the many heart-warming moments. This is such an important book for readers of all ages as it opens up a world we haven't really seen in children's literature. I particularly enjoyed how the MC's beliefs and those of the ancient Mesopotamian mythology were handled. I ...more
May 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is one of those books that I can't wait to get into the hand of middle grade readers, even though I freely admit, it's not the kind of book I really enjoy. What I DID enjoy was Sikander, the main character. It's so rare to find a book with an Arab (or actually an Arab-American) character that rings true and isn't focused on what's become almost a cliche: the refugee child who escapes war and is adjusting to his new life in America. That description certainly fits Sik and his family, but tha ...more
Feb 17, 2020 marked it as to-read
Mesopotamian mythology? Bro,I'm in ...more
Tiffany Martin
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When Nergal, an ancient God, comes looking for him, Sik’s normal life gets flipped upside down. In order to save all of Manhattan, Sik must retrieve the flower of Immortality before it is too late. He turns to Ishtar, Godess of Love and War, for help and her adopted daughter, Belet, as well as Gilgamesh. Can they save the city in time?

I absolutely loved this middle grade hero’s quest fantasy adventure and was saddened to turn the final page. Sik is exactly the type of underdog hero I adore! He’s
Beth Cato
Nov 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received this book via NetGalley.

Rick Riordan is doing wonderful work through his imprint that publishes middle grade books written by authors who draw from their own heritage to create fun, imaginative worlds. This book by Sarwat Chadda is another fantastic addition to the line.

Plague God is set in the modern era, following Sik, a Manhattan Muslim kid of Iraqi immigrant parents. His family was nearly shattered by the recent death of his older brother, a botanist doing good work in Iraq, but
Kelly Port
Jan 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Thank-you to NetGalley and Disney-Hyperion for an e-Arc of this book in exchange for an honest review.

As an avid reader of anything Greek and Roman Mythology, I found author Sarwat Chadda’s ability to weave an adventurous tale into Mesopotamia mythology, simply fascinating.

City of the Plague God, follows Sik, a grief-stricken thirteen-year-old boy navigating through the loss of his older brother and the strain of tending to his family’s deli.

His world is quickly thrown into further peril when
Nic Cho
Sep 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a ride and what a believable character Sik was. He's just your average middle schooler with a smart mouth but with a power that doesn't exactly make him a hero instantly like in comics. He can't fight with swords and weapons, and runs from a fight when he can, because who wouldn't when you're faced against demons and gods. He's really just a kid up against some crazy odds and living life through some painful times. The setting is believable and matches our world as we're dealing with pretty ...more
Jun 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Excellent addition to the Rick Riordan Presents series focused on the mythology of ancient Iraq and Mesopotamia. The narrative is fun, entertaining, and covers both humorous high points and deep emotional themes like grief with aplomb. The book concludes with a possible set up for a sequel, which I will be thrilled to read as well. I'll be purchasing a copy for myself, my library, and some young people in my life that I dearly love. ...more
Nov 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Sik is a muslim teenager in New York City who spends his days running his family deli. His life quickly takes a turn when ancient Mesopotamian demons and a plague god attack his deli looking for something they believe he’s stolen. When his parents become deathly ill as a result of this attack, Sik teams up with a ninja-like girl in his class and her immortal mother, the goddess of love and war, to save New York City and his parents from the plague god.

I want to start by saying that it’s well pas
Honestly, I loved this book!

Back at the beginning of Rick Riordan Presents, when several ethnic main characters were rolling out, such as Aru Shah, I'd wished for a Muslim hero. But honestly, I didn't hold my breath because I'd wondered, how would it be possible to have a monotheistic character in a polytheistic culture? The answer came in Sarwat Chadda's City of the Plague God.

Sik is his parents' second and American-born child, and, as a result, he feels very different from his older brother,
Kristi Housman Confessions of a YA Reader
City of the Plague God is full of adventure, but it's also about family and loss.

Sik lives in NYC and works at his parent's deli. His brother, Mo, was killed two years earlier and Sik still struggles with the loss. He even talks to Mo. Mo's best friend, Daoud, lives with the family and annoys Sik on a daily basis. One day at work, Sik hears some noises outside and makes the mistake of checking it out. What he finds are demons. Multiple demons that look more like animals than humans. A ninja come
This is my first book by this author, but definitely not his first. I'm very grateful to Rick Riordan for bringing this book to my attention through his Rick Riordan Presents imprint. The story grabbed my attention from the very beginning as we are introduced to Sik and Daoud. Sik is an Arab/Muslim whose parents own an Arab and Mediterranean deli in New York City and you can immediately picture the place and the wonderful smells that fill it and you know this place means a lot to Sik. The action ...more
Nov 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: school-library
What a wonderful romp through NYC with a host of Mesopotamian gods and goddesses, an immigrant Muslim boy named Sik trying to find his own identity after the death of his brother, a wanna-be actor friend who isn't what he appears, and house cats who turn into winged lions and tigers. One expects a Rick Riordan Presents to be full of snark and new, interesting mythology. This book absolutely does not disappoint. This story even handles the struggle Sik has reconciling his religion with the presen ...more
Nov 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was able to read an ARC of this book through NetGalley. Oh man — so many things I loved in this Rick Riordan Presents imprint about Mesopotamian mythology! I learned a ton while reading this book and CANNOT WAIT to pass it along to my 8th grade students. I’ve already pre-ordered it for my classroom and have gushed about it in class. My students were especially intrigued by the timeliness and relatability of battling Negral, the god of plagues! The Rick Riordan Presents imprint is absolute geni ...more
A Broken Zebra
NetGalley ARC

RR does it again by bringing another gem under the umbrella. It's peppered with Arabic and normalizes Islamic faith, it of course has PoC and gives children/readers non-White heroes, it properly exposes Mesopotamian mythology, and it educates (which is redundant to my normalizing remark earlier). You can't generalize - not all Muslims are 'evil', not all jihads are extreme. And not every story needs Obvious Romance/Sexual Tension!11!

I found the writing mature, approachable, and lov
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Sarwat Chadda has lived and traveled throughout the world, from China to Guatemala. He’s been lost in Mongolia, abandoned at a volcano in Nicaragua and hidden up a tree from a rhino in Nepal. Not to mention being detained by Homeland Security in the US and chased around Tibet by the Chinese police. Maybe he just has that sort of face.

Anyway, now he’s trying to settle in one place and stay out of t

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“Daoud scowled. “In case you’ve forgotten, I was in Homeland. Twice.”

“Yeah, and spent it with your face covered by a keffiyeh. What was the part again? Terrorist Henchman?”

“Head Terrorist Henchman.” One big pull and the grille rattled down into place.

I put on the padlock. “So when are you gonna play a hero?”

Daoud laughed. “Guys like us don’t get to be heroes. You know that.”

“Why? ‘Cause you’re an Arab, or ’cause you’re a Muslim?”

“Take your pick, cuz. Take your pick.”
“Someone had once told me that a group of cats was called a clowder or a glaring. These were definitely a glaring.” 0 likes
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