Book 6 in the Amelia Peabody series sees the ever intrepid Amelia, husband Emerson and son Ramses dive into peril deep into the deserts of Sudan. The book follows the family of Victorian era British Egyptologists during a dig in which they attempt to find the whereabouts of two of Emerson’s friends who vanished into the desert 14 years previously, while attempting to find a rumored lost civilization. Of course Amelia et al find the lost civilization (or are they led to it?), which has been keeping itself hidden since the fall of Egypt or before. The book is a great adventure, with fun, distinctive characters and manages to be suspenseful despite being book 6 of 23.
I enjoy how it is written in Amelia’s voice, as a “modern” woman in Victorian times. Her responses to other cultures slyly points out our own prejudices. Her son Ramses serves as a great foible. He’s overly precocious, and would solve it all only his parents would just listen to him. Meanwhile, Emerson pontificates and insists that it is Amelia who talks too much, while Amelia is certain that she knows best in all things. The book used real events as inspiration (not that there was a lost civilization, but the rumor of it was true) and then took them in a delightful direction, while Amelia as narrator drops such bon mots as “It happened a very long time ago, and Holy Writ, though no doubt divinely inspired, is a trifle careless about details. God is not a historian.”
If you enjoy learning a little bit of history embedded in a fun story with a wonderfully odd but strong woman leading the way, you can’t go wrong with this series.