This fictionalized life of the notorious queen is told from the point of view of her younger sister, Mutnodjmet. In 1351 B.C., Prince Amunhotep secretly kills his older brother and becomes next in line to Egypt's throne: he's 17, and the 15-year-old Nefertiti soon becomes his chief wife. He already has a wife, but Kiya's blood is not as royal, nor is she as bewitching as Nefertiti. As Mutnodjmet, two years younger than her sister, looks on (and falls in love), Amunhotep and the equally ambitious Nefertiti worship a different main god, displace the priests who control Egypt's wealth and begin building a city that boasts the royal likenesses chiseled in stone. Things get tense when Kiya has sons and the popular Nefertiti has only daughters, and they come to a boil when the army is used to build temples to the pharaoh and his queen instead of protecting Egypt's borders. Though sometimes big events are telegraphed, Moran, who lives in California and is making her U.S. debut, gets the details just right, and there are still plenty of surprises in an epic that brings an ancient world to life.
This was my first Michelle Moran book and also my first HF about Egypt. This is also the authors debut novel (I love reading debuts). I really enjoyed reading this book, I thought the characters were portrayed nicely and I had pictures in my mind of what everyone looked like as well and the scenery. I kept thinking what a society, letting 15 & 17 year old's running the country, but if you are born royal that is your lot in like. I only wish that I knew alittle more about the culture, gods and calendar of Egypt.
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