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The Curse of the Pharaohs: 05/16/13

cover art

The Curse of the Pharaohs by Elizabeth Peters was published six years after The Crocodile on the Sandbank and takes place five years after the events described therein.

In those five years, Amelia and Radcliffe have gotten married and had their one child — a precocious (and sometimes strangle worthy) son, Walter Peabody "Ramses" Emerson. In this book, thankfully, he's still in his infancy and toddlerdom, and unable to travel with his folks when they are called back to Egypt to finish the work of the late Lord Baskerville.

After a lengthy introduction, highlighting the Emersons trying to live a domestic life in Kent, the book moves to Luxor and the Valley of the Kings. Along with the tomb with its unusual construction and long sprung booby-traps, the Emersons take on an odd cast of characters — a morbidly obese psychic who claims to be Emerson's lover from a previous lifetime (think a plot borrowed from The Mummy), a reporter who has invented a curse, a photographer with a big secret, a wealthy American, the psychic's meek daughter and an Egyptian mau, who is probably the most sensible character in the lot.

For anyone who as read The Laughter of Dead Kings, the last of the Vicky Bliss novels, will recognize the setting. In that novel, Vicky, unknowingly, retraces Amelia's footsteps. For me, this connection between the two series was the most fun part of the mystery.

As this was also a re-read via Barbara Rosenblat's audio performance, I already knew who had done it and why. It didn't matter. It was a fun re-read.

Four stars

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