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He Shall Thunder In The Sky: An Amelia Peabody Novel of Suspense [Mass Market Paperback]

Elizabeth Peters
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (120 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Feb. 12 2010 Amelia Peabody Mysteries

“Passion among the pyramids. Forged antiquities. A country at war. A camel in the garden. A cameo by Lawrence of Arabia. Add in Peters’s trademark intelligent plotting, engaging characters, and stylish writing and we can hardly ask for anything more.”

Cincinnati Enquirer


One of the most beloved characters in mystery/suspense fiction, archeologist and Egyptologist Amelia Peabody bravely faces gravest peril in Cairo on the eve of World War One in New York Times bestselling Grandmaster Elizabeth Peters’s magnificent Egyptian adventure, He Shall Thunder in the Sky. The San Francisco Examiner calls these heart-racing exploits of Amelia and her courageous family, the Emersons, “pure delight.” But perhaps the New York Times Book Review states it best: “Between Amelia Peabody and Indiana Jones, it’s Amelia—in wit and daring—by a landslide.”

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From Amazon

He Shall Thunder in the Sky completes an internal quartet (which also includes Seeing a Large Cat, The Ape Who Guards the Balance, and The Falcon at the Portal) within Elizabeth Peters's legendary series starring Amelia Peabody, the intrepid Edwardian Egyptologist, her husband, Emerson, and her extended family. The quartet comprises not only Amelia's diary of those years but also parts of a mysterious "Manuscript H," an omniscient viewpoint that allows a glimpse into the minds of Amelia's son--the dashing and brilliant Ramses--and her ward, Nefret Forth, as they mature into adults with their own secrets and agendas. The Falcon at the Portal left readers hanging impatiently in the enormous rift that book's events gouged between Ramses and Nefret, both madly in love but unrelentingly proud.

The winter of 1914-15 finds the Peabody-Emerson family back in Cairo--now under British martial law, with the Suez Canal under constant threat of attack from the Ottoman Empire. The city's young Englishmen are rushing to enlist, except for Ramses, who is widely scorned for his pacifism. Yet Amelia and Emerson soon find out that Ramses is (literally) playing a mysterious and potentially explosive part in the conflict between Egyptian nationalists and the British authorities, for reasons both political and familial. Nefret, for her part, is still running a health clinic for the city's fallen women and trying to avoid the attentions of Percy, Amelia's odious nephew. In the meantime, the Emersons' excavations at Giza reveal an unexpected treasure so remarkable that the uneasy Amelia immediately senses the fine hand of Sethos, the Master Criminal (who through many previous books has alternately plagued her and protested his boundless affection for her), at work. The climax and denouement are entirely worth the price of admission--tying up a decade's worth of loose strings and explaining some nagging points so subtle that less observant readers might easily have missed them. It's Peters's great gift that in the grand scheme of things, no clues are wasted. Her plotting is wonderfully complex and intriguing, and it fits seamlessly into the detailed historical background she builds so carefully. It may have taken years for her to complete this four-part dance (she promises more Amelia Peabody mysteries in the future), but she's charmed us right out of our dancing slippers along the way. --Barrie Trinkle --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Excavating in Egypt on the eve of World War I, Amelia Peabody is in trouble with the British ex-pat community for her pacifist beliefs even as her nemesis--Sethos, the Master Criminal--reappears.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Jan. 24 2004
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I think I've fallen in love with Ramses, a main character in this series. This book is so good!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best so far! Juicy!!! Dec 3 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I couldn't put it down. Couldn't wait for the end and never wanted it to end at the same time. Ties up loose ends from previous books in the series. Can't wait for the next one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Don't Start Here(or stop!!) March 19 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is just one in a series of wonderful books by Elizabeth Peters about Amelia Peabody, her husband Emerson and her family.
But don't start reading the series here if you are the type of person who likes to read things in order! Start with _Crocodile on the Sandbank_ which is the first book where she meets Emerson and marries him. If you don't care about reading them in order, then this is an excellent book, so get started! I got the first one out of my public library and fell in love with the series and now own many of them. Elizabeth Peters also writes about other topics/characters and I highly recommend all of her books. The Peabody series is her most involved and if you are at all interested in mysteries and Egyptology, these are the books for you!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best in the series! Feb. 28 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is one of my supreme favorites! It was great, and I totally recomend it for any fan of the series. Still, if you're not up to speed, don't bother until you read some of the others in the series. Otherwise, it's a great read. Enjoy!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! Oct. 21 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
There are three or four series that I especially love and this is one of them, perhaps the #1. Elizabeth Peters has created, over the years, characters that are so 3-dimensional that they become almost real in the reader's mind. In this particular episode, WW I has begun and its affects are being felt in Egypt as with most other parts of the world. I found this book particularly impelling because of the way in which Ms. Peters treats subject of the war - showing the affects without actually taking the reader into the battlefields. The premise of the book is that Ramses is a coward, refusing to fight; that misconception is soon righted for Amelia, Emerson, etc. although they never believe that he is a coward, anyway. The book moves along at the usual Peters-pace and the ending is fantastic. Have already purchased the next book in the series and look forward to many more exploits with these characters who have almost become friends to me.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The best Amelia mystery yet July 15 2002
By "lia47"
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This novel is by far my favorite of the Peabody novels - but you CANNOT read it first if you are new to the series. Read at least the three previous installments first! Please! This engrossing mystery serves as the culmination of a four-book saga within the larger Amelia series. In addition to the usual archaeology and criminal mayhem, we have some espionage thrown in as the world enters the Great War. Amelia and family are, of course, in the thick of things. By the end of the book comes the resolution of a certain plot that has been stewing for several books now - and the family experiences some surprising revelations as well.
Peters has outdone herself with this novel. Descriptions of Egypt are as colorful, and her characters as lovable, as ever. But in this book Ramses, Peters' best character, truly comes into his own. For the first time the action really focuses on him rather than Amelia, and we see inside his head more than ever before. This book is a must-read for fans of mysteries, historical fiction, or romances. So pretty much everybody!
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2.0 out of 5 stars The hagiography of Ramses . . . July 5 2002
By kallan
Format:Mass Market Paperback
What are this book's good points? Well, it's fat (if you like that kind of thing), densely written, atmospheric in its setting, and full of intrigue. There is more time with your favourite characters, if you're a fan of the series, and some amusing moments. There are also many loose ends tied up, and some astonishing revelations about the villains of the piece.
What are this book's bad points? Sometimes it is unclear whether it is supposed to be a romp or deadly serious, fun or high art. Archaeological digging and mystery is kept to a minimum, and Amelia and Emerson do not get much of a role. The focus is squarely upon the boring Ramses and Nefret, their son and ward, respectively.
Exactly why Peters has chosen to go with this departure from what made the others in the series I have read (with the exception of Falcon at the Portal) so much fun, I really couldn't say. But since I care just as much about a good plot as I do about the characters, I would not class this change as a success. In Thunder in the Sky, the bulk of the plot is concerned with Ramses' double-dealing as he attempts to unmask a traitor within the British administration in the early stages of World War One. Woven within this is the unresolved romantic tension between him and Nefret. They love each other, but the usual litany of misunderstandings, assumptions, and misplaced pride still keep them apart. As with Amelia's manoeuvrings with the Master Criminal, it's really only of interest if 1) you have read the other books in this vein and 2) want the focus upon family drama and tying up loose ends. Myself, I prefer the usual archaeological adventure with a mysterious twist.
Thunder in the Sky is competently written, by Peters' standards, though I do think she overreaches herself occasionally in tone.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Volume in a Great series June 3 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I began reading the Amelia Peabody series in the middle with Hippopotamus Pool. I figured I would not be as attached to the characters if I had read them from the beginning. But I was wrong. Each book brings a certain maternal feeling as Ramses has grown up in each book. He Shall Thunder in the Sky is the book where Ramses is no longer just part of the plot, he is an integral part of the story. Not that he wasn't before, but an omniscent view of his escapades added to his mother's "journals" make for a more involved and evolved story. Elizabeth Peters has done a wonderful job bringing the Emerson family to life, and I can see the series going on for years.
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