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Starred Review. MWA Grand Master Peters delivers another winner that you can't put down and yet don't want to see end, the 17th entry in her bestselling series to feature Egyptologist Amelia Peabody Emerson and her extended family (after 2004's Guardian of the Horizon). Early in 1922, novelist Magda Petherick, the widow of noted collector Pringle Petherick, interrupts the tea that the Emerson clan are enjoying on the veranda of their house by the Nile. Mrs. Petherick wants Emerson, Amelia's eminent archeologist husband, to dispose of a beautiful golden statuette that Pringle acquired shortly before his death because she believes it carries a curse. All are intrigued. News travels fast, and such a magnificent artifact soon attracts all manner of collectors, museum authorities, journalists and evildoers. Emerson's illegitimate half-brother, Sethos, formerly a dealer in illegal antiquities, arrives in disguise, but unfortunately he's followed by the gentleman he's impersonating. Tomb excavations, mountain treks, brutal attacks, an abduction, an exorcism and murder keep the plot hopping. The author's droll sense of humor and picture of a leisurely and less complicated age add to the appeal. Agent, Dominick Abel. (On sale Mar. 29)
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The year is 1922, and Amelia Peabody, Emerson, Ramses, and their familiar company have returned to Egypt for another season of excavation. Before they have a chance to begin, however, they receive an unexpected visitor, flamboyant writer Magda Petherick, who spins an outrageous story about a cursed artifact and implores Emerson to exorcise its demon. Of course, no one falls for Petherick's elaborate yarn, but the beautiful statuette piques Egyptologist Emerson's interest enough to convince him an investigation of its history is in order. In the meantime, Petherick turns up dead, someone attempts to "liberate" the artifact, and two attempts are made on Ramses' life. It's a delicious setup for Peabody to exercise her special talents. The espionage complications of previous books evaporated with the end of World War I, leaving this a more routine adventure. But, as usual, Peters injects plenty of humorous banter, lots of bluster from Emerson, and enough coy swipes at Victorian propriety to keep the story lively. There's even a little surprise at the close. A pleasant addition to the long-running series. Stephanie Zvirin
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.