Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Sekhmet Bed

If you love to dive back in time to ancient Egypt, then this is the book for you!

The Sekhmet Bed: A Novel of Ancient Egypt (The She-King Book 1)

Summary (via Goodreads): Queen Ahmose knows her duty: to give the Pharaoh a son. But she is young, and has just watched her closest friend die in childbirth. If the Pharaoh plants his seed in her she will die the same way, in a pool of blood, surrounded by wailing women. She has her husband’s love, but a king must have an heir…and even the Pharaoh’s patience will run out. Meanwhile, a lesser queen – Ahmose’s own sister – has given him three sweet, bright children, all of them boys. Ahmose knows her grasp on the Pharaoh’s heart is loosening.

Desperate, she begs the gods for courage to become a mother. They give her more than courage: she is granted a vision of a shining prince, her son – a gift for Egypt who will bring glory to the land. He will be more than the son of a king. He will be the son of the god Amun.

But when the child arrives, it’s a girl.

Ahmose knows the vision was not wrong. Her daughter Hatshepsut has a male soul, and Amun intends the girl to rule. But the Pharaoh will not scandalize Egypt by proclaiming a female successor. If she cannot convince the Pharaoh to accept Hatshepsut as his heir, everything Ahmose loves will be destroyed.
Hatshepsut's Temple

Review (4/5 stars): I find it astonishing that the author was not able to find a publisher for this book (It was self published). In her notes at the end of the novel she says that publishers only want to put out books about the "celebrities" of ancient Egypt and that there is no market for anything else. I hope the online success of this book sends a signal that they are absolutely wrong in that assumption.

The only reason we keep reading the same stories about the same historical figures is because that's all that the publishers put out there. If there was a wider variety, I would most definitely read more.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The storytelling is top notch and the character development is totally believable. I also liked that the author decided to attempt to stay true to historically accurate language where possible. True fans of Ancient Egyptian fiction can adapt to this easily and it definitely adds something extra special to the story.

This is the first of a four part series, which I am definitely looking forward to continuing. I'm so happy that I stumbled upon this author and can't wait to read more of her work.

Hatshepsut is one of my favourites from Ancient Egypt.  It's always hard to believe that someone like her actually existed and led the amazing life that she did.  

She was also one of the main characters in Lost King, which I told you about a few months ago.

Do you love books about kings and queens of ancient Egypt?  Would you like to read about others besides Cleopatra, Amunhotep, and Nefertiti?  Come to think of it, Ramses II was one of the greatest kings of the 19th dynasty.  I wonder why there aren't more books about his reign?  I smell an opportunity for any of you aspiring historical fiction writers out there!!

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