Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Hippopotamus Pool by Elizabeth Peters

What could be more intriguing to Amelia Peabody and her irresistible, irascible husband, Emerson ("the Father of Curses"), than meeting a masked stranger who offers to show them an Egyptian queen's lost tomb? The mysterious disappearance of that midnight visitor before he can disclose the secret!

Thus begins Amelia's newest adventure along the Nile. Helped, or hampered, by two teenagers, their son, Ramses, and their beautiful ward, Nefret, the Emersons set sail for Thebes to find the hidden tomb of Queen Tetisheri. With them is a timid (or is she?) governess named Miss Marmaduke. Soon to join the expedition are Amelia's sister- and brother-in-law, Evelyn and Walter, whose marriage is going through a rocky patch.

As usual, archaeology is only one of Amelia's concerns, as the Emersons encounter murderers, kidnappers, grave robbers and ancient Egyptian curses. The tomb, of course, will hold a stunning surprise. And the Hippopotamus Pool? It's an ancient Egyptian story of war and wits that Amelia is translating... and that alerts her to a hippo of a different stripe: a nefarious, overweight art dealer who may become her next archenemy. Or perhaps not - for another nemesis is lurking under the Saharan sun, a master of disguises, a caliph of crime, a veritable vizier of villainy. Will Amelia meet her match?

This is just going to be a really quick mini review, because I am really behind and therefore finished this ages ago. I also have a couple of reviews that I have to write for deadlines and so need to get on with those ones!

It's been too long since I read the last Amelia Peabody mystery - luckily all the elements were there that make up Amelia's world - her passion for her husband Emerson, and for archeology, her irascible son Ramses, along with their adopted daughter Nefret, the cats, dastardly evil etc.

It was interesting to see the changes that were made with some of the secondary characters in this book, particularly with Emerson's brother Walter and his wife Evelyn. I wonder if the changes that were made will allow them to be something more than the family who are left behind in future books.

Ramses is still precocious but in a much more intelligent and less annoying way. He does seem to be mooning around after Nefret. It will be interesting to see where that leads in future.

Another really fun trip through Egypt, with the inevitable mystery to be investigated! I am really looking forward to reading the next one!

Rating: 4/5


  1. Thanks for reminding me how far behind I am on my Amelia Peabody books!! lol

  2. You're making me wish I'd brought the series with me--the most recent one is near the top of my TBR pile, and I'm really feeling the urge to revisit the beginning.

  3. I should hurry up and read the next book in the series really!