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Crocodile on the Sandbank [Mass Market Paperback]

Elizabeth Peters
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (96 customer reviews)

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Paperback CDN $12.58  
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Mass Market Paperback, Jan. 1 1988 --  
Audio, CD CDN $26.95  

Book Description

Jan. 1 1988
Thirty-one-year-old Victorian gentlewoman Amelia Peabody has not only inherited her father's fortune, but she is also blessed with his strong will as well. Now she's headed for Cairo, accompanied by a girl with a tarnished past, to indulge her passion for Egyptology. Little did she know that murder and a homicidal mummy lay in wait for her.

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From Amazon

Elizabeth Peters's unforgettable heroine Amelia Peabody makes her first appearance in this clever mystery. Amelia receives a rather large inheritance and decides to use it for travel. On her way through Rome to Egypt, she meets Evelyn Barton-Forbes, a young woman abandoned by her lover and left with no means of support. Amelia promptly takes Evelyn under her wing, insisting that the young lady accompany her to Egypt, where Amelia plans to indulge her passion for Egyptology. When Evelyn becomes the target of an aborted kidnapping and the focus of a series of suspicious accidents and mysterious visitations, Amelia becomes convinced of a plot to harm her young friend. Like any self-respecting sleuth, Amelia sets out to discover who is behind it all.


"* 'I can't wait for the next Peabody story... I really do think [Elizabeth Peters'] books are great entertainment.' Angela Ripon * 'A writer so popular that the public library has to keep her books under lock and key.' Washington Post Book World * 'Think Miss Marple with early feminist gloss crossed with Indiana Jones... accomplished entertainment.' Guardian" --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm a fan but the pace stagnated. March 30 2014
By Carolyn TOP 1000 REVIEWER
I love Elizabeth Peters' `Dr. Vicky Bliss'. A modest rating for her counterpart is likely because launching volumes must explain their premise. I didn't expect this popular run to be historical but the opening pages of "Crocodile On The Sandbank" gave me a hearty grin. I can call myself an Amelia & Evelyn fan. However when the ladies reach Cairo, it is the expressive and jaunty style that kept me afloat.

The pace stagnated, a dismayingly large portion of this novel. Three stars stem from the noticeably long period, in which nothing occurred to match the great Egyptian adventure that was laid out for readers. It was an Egyptian campout. Foreign scenery, dynamic personalities, a hint of romance for Evelyn propelled it just barely. If I weren't a firm finisher of the books I have opened, I might not have reached the late chapters in which the plots refuelled their gas. The uneventful chunk wasn't unpleasant; merely pale against the exciting possibilities that delayed too long in coming. Thankfully the preservation of murals, exploration of caves, and chance to unearth artifacts are of keen interest to me.

There is plenty to admire about this creative premise, cacophonous assembly of personalities, and a truly unique gift with narrative. I have high hopes the remainder of the series has ample room to score four and five stars, in reflection of tauter events and more consistently sharp interest. However there are two more causes for the mild outcome of this volume. I cannot abide fiction that fails to deliver the mystical element the synopsis used as a lure. Fiction is meant to be fabricated! More than that, at the identity of the villain we groan. Their reasoning is even worse! I can only say it would be less ridiculous to rob a bank.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Relaxed Pace Filled With Vivid Descriptions Sept. 2 2013
By Debra Purdy Kong TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Equipped with financial resources and a strong spirit, Amelia Peabody seeks adventure by taking an extended tour of Egypt. During a stop in Rome, Amelia comes across a young English woman lying on the street. Disheveled and malnourished, Evelyn Barton-Forbes has been abandoned by her Italian lover and, having disgraced her family, cannot return to England. Since Amelia’s traveling companion also canceled plans, she invites Evelyn to join her. In Egypt, they meet the Emerson brothers, whose archeological expedition becomes entwined with their own adventure in ways Amelia could not have foreseen. The appearance of a walking mummy at an excavation site terrifies the locals, but Amelia is not so easily alarmed until it comes after Evelyn.

Crocodile on the Sandbank, is the first in Elizabeth Peters’ series, and I can see why these books have been so popular. A strong, no-nonsense character rebelling against the rules and restrictions of Victorian England presents plenty of internal conflict for Amelia, but she’s smart and resourceful enough to build a life for herself away from disapproving eyes.

It’s refreshing to read a novel that isn’t centered around a murder, but rather the threat of danger. Peters’ descriptions of Egypt and her action scenes are so vivid and detailed that it kept me turning the pages. She also managed to create a relaxed pace while steadily mounting the tension. Although the book was published in 1975, Peters captures the tone of Victorian England well, and even directly addresses the reader as authors often did during that period. My only quibble is that the guilty parties were obvious from the get-go. Still, I’ll definitely read more just for the lovely writing.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Once I read this one, I was hooked. A great series with fun mysteries, amazing settings and fantastic characters. I have given this book to many friends as gifts and all have loved it!
If you are new to this series, here are some things you might like to know...
Elizabeth Peters also writes under the name Barbara Michaels (not sure which is her real name). Personally, I have not been impressed by some of her other books outside of the Peabody mysteries. The Amelia Peabody books are adventure/mystery stories that take place in Egypt, in the late 1800's.
Here are the books featuring Amelia Peabody in order from first to last:
1) Crocodile on the Sandbank (1975)
2) The Curse of the Pharaohs (1981)
3) The Mummy Case (1985)
4) Lion in the Valley (1986)
5) The Deeds of the Disturber (1988)
6) The Last Camel Died at Noon (1991)
7) The Snake, the Crocodile and the Dog (1992)
8) The Hippopotamus Pool (1996)
9) Seeing a Large Cat (1997)
10) The Ape Who Guards the Balance (1998)
11) The Falcon at the Portal (1999)
12) He Shall Thunder In The Sky (May 2000)
13) Lord of the Silent (May 2001)
14) The Golden One (April 2002)
15) Children of the Storm (April 2003)
Happy reading!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Light and enjoyable! Aug. 17 2010
By Pierre Gauthier TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Written recently by a trained Egyptologist, this light mystery novel is set in Egypt in the 1880's.

This is by no means great literature: the dénouement is quite predictable, the characters are somewhat one-dimensional and social anachronisms pop up now and then.

Overall, however, this book is extremely enjoyable. This is due in part to the author's frequent wit and tongue-in-cheek humour. It also results from the archaeological setting which allows her to throw in a slew of informational tidbits without ever being overtly pedagogical.

I truly look forward to reading the second book in the Amelia Peabody series!
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars heroine not believable
I had hoped for a good story (I like the title) but was disappointed because the heroine's character traits didn't hold together - unless she was support to have a multiple... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightfully witty, intelligent writing, great stories and hilarious...
Amelia Peabody and Radcliffe Emerson are two of THE most delightful, intelligent and funny characters I have come across in a very long time! Read more
Published on March 24 2010
5.0 out of 5 stars A Jewel of a Read
I absolutely adore this book! What a pleasure to be treated by an author who considers the reader an intelligent being; no lengthy explanations of concepts but the assumption that... Read more
Published on Jan. 2 2008 by Marion Marchetto
4.0 out of 5 stars A Little bit of Victorian Egypt.
This book is our introduction to the world of Amelia Peabody and and her adventures in Egypt during the Victorian age. Ms. Read more
Published on July 7 2004 by S. Schwartz
5.0 out of 5 stars Put yourself in another world with Amelia Peabody
This is the first installment of The Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters. This is actually my second Amelia Peabody book, I first read The Lord of the Silent. Read more
Published on June 11 2004 by "lily71474"
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful !
Thoroughly enjoyable story. Well written. Well read. Treat won't regret it.
Published on June 3 2004 by Book Worm
5.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and Enjoyable
Introducing Amelia Peabody, rich heiress, a strong and intelligent woman ahead of her time, outspoken and eager for adventure, 30-something spinster determined never to marry, she... Read more
Published on May 27 2004 by Gail Moore
4.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful read
This is the debut novel of amateur sleuth and Egyptologist Amelia Peabody, and it's really wonderful. Read more
Published on March 14 2004 by Jeronimo
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!
Another great book in the Amelia Peabody series
Published on Jan. 24 2004 by K. Turner
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm Shocked that I Liked It!
I have to admit, I've fallen in love with Amelia Peabody Emerson! This first book in the series had me laughing out loud at the outlandish behavior of our intrepid archaeologist. Read more
Published on Dec 7 2003 by Avid Reader
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