Sunday, September 20, 2009

BOOK: Nefertiti by Michelle Moran

Nefertiti by Michelle Moran, 460 pages
Queen of Egypt, Daughter of Eternity

Summer Reading Challenge: novel about Royalty

Nefertiti is one of those historical names that I recognized and had a vague understanding about - Egyptian woman from ancient history, but I really didn't remember anything about the ancient history I may have learned ages ago. (ha, because high school feels like ancient history to me.)

Moran has fashioned a great historical novel. I find the information I glean from historical fiction stays in my head as fact, so I hope these authors have accurately researched their data. In this case, I learned about 1300 BC in Egypt and the reign of Nefertiti and her husband Amunhotep, as the Pharaohs. The royal life is a dangerous one, fraught with deception and ambition and concern for leaving a legacy - both physical and familial. I particularly liked the every day details of living that were described and the opulence of Egypt that was stunning.

The parallels to The Other Boleyn Girl by Phillipa Gregory are abundant, but that's alright by me, because they both tell great stories. Each are narrated by the lesser known sister of a famous, strong woman. Both sets of sisters are ultimately pawns for their father's ambitions and power. Both Anne Boleyn and Nefertiti captivate their king-husband and essentially steal him from a first wife, and then command at least as much power as her husband and struggle to birth boys. Both stories involve a break in traditional religion that upsets the country.

If you like The Other Boleyn Girl, I would recommend Nefertiti. Upon finishing each book, I excitedly look forward to another dip in that historical era, as each author has written several more books that continue the original story. More royal intrigue! The Heretic Queen is the sequel that I'll read next, and eventually I'll be up to date as Michelle Moran has a new book just released that is making the rounds of the blogosphere, Cleopatra's Daughter.

4 comments:

Jenny said...

I used to know all sorts of things about Nefertiti, when I was in fourth grade (or so) and was having an ancient Egypt obsession, but thinking about it now, I can hardly remember anything. Sounds like a fun read!

Kailana said...

I love Michelle's books! Glad you did too!

farmlanebooks said...

I'm so pleased to hear that you enjoyed this one. I've just won two Michelle Moran books, so am hoping that I enjoy them too.

Literary Feline said...

I really enjoyed Nefertiti too. Much more than I liked The Other Boleyn Girl actually. I hope to read more of Moran in the near future.