By Elizabeth Peters
Constable & Robinson - May 2002
ISBN 1841194840 PB
Teenage/Adult - Historical Crime
1890s Egypt

Reviewed by: Rachel A Hyde,
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Here is another reprint in the delightful Amelia Peabody series. Set soon after the adventures in what I regard as this author's finest work The Last Camel Died At Noon (also reviewed in this section) it is the first of the second stage in this series when a more somber tone creeps in, the paces slows down and there is some harking back to more carefree times. The book starts with a burst of nostalgia as Amelia and Emerson are on their second honeymoon. A working honeymoon, of course, as they search for the tomb of Nefertiti but as usual things start to go wildly wrong and they find themselves embroiled an adventure involving the Master Criminal Sethos, millionaire amateur archaeologist Cyrus, various modern (and some not so modern) bodies and a rift between Amelia and Emerson that threatens to widen unless the puzzle can be solved and a deadly secret kept.

As usual, there is plenty of adventure, readers can renew acquaintance with many of the regular characters and meet some colorful new ones as well as learning something about Egyptology and chuckling at the humor, which this time mainly revolves around the battle of the sexes. Sometimes it all gets a big bogged down with family ramifications, flashbacks to past adventures. My advice to anybody wanting to start reading these books would be to start at the beginning. Not my favorite of the series - sometimes it seems to tread water and rely too much on what has gone before - but still very enjoyable and a rare mixture of murder, humor and adventure.

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