Sunday, March 30, 2008

Reflections in the Nile by J. Suzanne Frank

From it's book cover:
Imagine that you, a contemporary tourist, are standing awestruck in an ancient Egyptian temple. Suddenly a vortex in time and space sends you back thousands of years to a desert kingdom of glittering splendor. Your body has merged with that of a beautiful, scheming priestess, but your sensibilities, your intelligence, your terror remains that of a modern woman who is trying to get back home, trying, in this place of strangeness and wonder, to stay alive...

Rich in sensuality and authenticity, imbued with a mesmerizing "you are there" quality, J. Suzanne Frank's wonderful series makes it's highly acclaimed debut. Set in the decadent Egypt of the woman pharoah Hatshepsut, this stunning novel portrays Dallas artist, Chloe Kingsley on an unforgettable journey. A twist in time has plunged her into a world of deadly politics and dark secrets that culminates the the terror and chaos of the biblical Exodus... and challenges a modern woman to fight for her love, her beliefs, and her true destiny.

"Good storytelling...ancient Egypt comes alive!" Diana Gabaldon

My thoughts: Anyone who knows me, knows why I read this book. It has been compared to Outlander and in the overall genre, yes, it's the same kind of story, even Diana Gabaldon writes a blurb on the front cover of the paperback. I must say, I really enjoyed this time travel story. I agree with the blurb on the book, you feel like you are there, and you learn a bit about ancient Egypt, it's customs and beliefs. The love story is good too between Chloe and Cheftu, a tall handsome Egyptian that has his own secret.

I think anyone who likes Outlander will enjoy this book, the first of a series. I liked the heroine, Chloe, and identified with her and the descriptions were vivid and the story engrossing. Not only is it the story of Chloe trying to cope with time traveling unwillingly to ancient Egypt, but it is the biblical Exodus story as well. Chloe and Cheftu must deal with the many plagues and catastrophes that are laid upon Egypt due to the fact Pharoah will not do as Mosesra (Moses) asks: "Let my people go." As much as I kept picturing Charleton Heston as Moses, it was not hokey or Cecil B. DeMillish, it was good! At the same time, it didn't hit you over the head with biblical overtones either, it only enhances the setting and drama of the story. Okay, maybe the parting of the Red Sea was a bit melodramatic, but it was interesting reading!

Is it as good as Outlander? No, but it's close to capturing the feel of it, but I was not as emotionally involved with these characters as I was with Jamie and Claire in Outlander. Still, it's a good read and their struggle to come to terms with one another and admit their love is a good tale. This book is best described as an evocative, romantic novel with an archaeological twist. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the books in the series which take Chloe to Atlantis, Canaan and finally to Babylon.

I rate it a 4/5
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