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CompleteMartialArts.com - War of the Crowns: A Novel of Ancient Egypt (Magnificent Queen of Freedom Trilogy)

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Binding: Paperback
Format: Bargain Price
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 320
Publication Date: 2004-05-18

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Editorial Reviews:

Christian Jacq, author of the international sensations Ramses and The Stone of Light, continues his epic Queen of Freedom trilogy as the fiercely determined Queen Ahhotep struggles to save her people -- and reclaim her own legacy.

The barbaric Hyksos have taken possession of the whole of Egypt, imposing their harsh rule with unimaginable cruelty. Only Queen Ahhotep has yet to succumb. Not far from Thebes, the only city that retains its independence, she has established a secret military base to train her loyal fighters. Even when her husband is killed, Ahhotep refuses to yield, turning instead to her eldest son, Kames, who must take his father's place as pharaoh. Leading an increasingly powerful army, Ahhotep steals victory after victory -- despite the treachery that threatens Egypt from within. Slowly, the Egyptians are recovering their honor, growing stronger by the day -- and the brutal invaders no longer seem invincible. Unless Queen Ahhotep and her followers are being lured into an elaborately designed trap that may seal their doom....

Combining historical fact with a vivid imagination, Christian Jacq tells the enthralling true story of the Ancient Egyptian warrior-queen Ahhotep -- without whose valiant courage the Valley of the Kings and the glorious treasures of the pharaohs, including Ramses the Great, would never have existed.

Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating: Average rating of 3/5Average rating of 3/5Average rating of 3/5Average rating of 3/5Average rating of 3/5
Summary: Most enjoyable yarn about ancient Egypt
Comment: War of the Crowns is entertaining, well written historical fiction set in ancient Egypt. It is the second volume in a series. While I enjoyed the novel, it did not make me want to rush to read the other volumes. As a story, it is well told, with action, humor, and likable characters. The "buddy comedy/ adventure" of the Afghan and Moustache is particularly appealing. I also like how the writer incorporates magic and mysticism. Sorcery and the gods were major elements of ancient Egyptian culture, and the characters treat them as if they are as real as bread and birds. Often in historicals and fantasies, magic is presented tongue-in-cheek; characters use it as a symbol because the commoners believe in it, not because there is any truth behind it. In this novel, magic is not mere myth but fact--perhaps not realistic, but historical because that's what the people believed. The writer does not waste his time explaining the real reasons behind the magic, since such commentary would detract from the story's progression. In my opinion the novel lacks complexity, which stops me from rating it 4 stars. The heroes are immaculately good and the villains are irrevocably bad, which limits characterization. The heroes occasionally feel doubt, but those moments pass quickly. I like how the writer uses the villains as focal characters, but they are never more than villains. More insight into their minds and agendas should have been offered.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: The Queen of Freedom Continues the Fight
Comment: In this the second book in the Queen of Freedom trilogy the fight for liberation continues for the Egyptians against the first invaders of their land the Hyksos lead by their aging Emperor Apophis. In the 17th century B.C. the Hyksos used horse drawn chariots and other advanced weaponry to conqueror and begin a one hundred year occupation of Egypt forcing its people into slavery and oblivion. From the beginning twenty year old Queen Ahhotep along with her husband the Pharaoh Seqen devised a strategy to retake Egypt. Now, Queen Ahhotep is thirty nine, her husband Seqen murdered and her eldest son Kamose is Pharaoh.

Headquartered in Thebes the Thebans along with a loyal cast of supporters such as Afghan, Moustache, Qaris, Moon, Emheb, Heray, Neshi and Ahmes begin the second wave of attack following the lead of Seqen. With a sizable well trained army and a swift sailing fleet they head for the impregnable Per-Hathor to the south. They continue following the Nile south to conquer Elephantine and Buhen in Nubia facing the military might of King Nedjeh of Kerma. Victories in hand the Thebans head north toward the Hykos capital Avaris in the Delta. Along the way they retake Kebet, Qis, Abydos, Dendera, Nefrusy, Khmun, Sako, Faiyum, and Memphis getting all the way to the gates of Avaris. There is only one problem for the Thebans there is a master spy among them.

The Pharaoh Kamose after taking the port of Avaris is forced to retreat. Returning to Thebes it is found that Kamose has been poisoned and dies at the hand of the unidentified spy.

For the Hyksos Emperor Apophis there is Khamudi the self serving perverted High Treasurer only interested in furthering his wealth, Jannas the brilliant military Commander who seeks Khamudi's ruin and presides over the massacres of innocent Egyptians, Windswept, Apophis' sister, who is one of his many secret collaborators, and Aberia who strangles victims with her bare hands and commands the new prison camp in Sharuhen.

Jacq's writing is so vivid and imaginative. I feel like I am right there in the mist of it all. I feel the power of the magic in the ancient rites performed to provide guidance to the Egyptians. Jacq takes historical fact and makes me live it.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5Average rating of 4/5
Summary: The fight continues....
Comment: Jacq's second in the Queen of Freedom trilogy has the oppressed Eygyptians continuing their freedom fight from their base at Thebes. Pharoah Seqen, Ahhtoep's husband, is dead, but he is succeeded by his extremely capable first son, Ahmes, a young man in his twenties who leads the resurgent Thebans with alacrity.
In this volume they take Elephantine, Buhen and stream south into Nubia to defeat Prince Nedjeh, felling Per-Hathor, Khmun and Nefrusy along the way. During the proceedings Pharaoh Kamose falls in love with Anat, the widow of Tita and marries her, Moustache falls in love with the Nubian, She-Cat (who eventually comes to head the medical corps).
Meanwhile, under the command of the evil Apophis, emperor of the occupying Hyksos, Jannas crushes both the Anatolian rebellion and the Minoan-supplied pirates, then presides over great atrocities at at Sakoa nd Per-Shaq whilst Khamudi takes up a sideline in opium dealing to further his position and wealth. The indescribably evil Aberia continues to strangle her way through hundreds, opening a prison camp at Sharuhen, condemning thousands to death. Amongst all the barbarity and genocide Windswept, Apophis' sister, falls in love with Minos, the finest Minoan painter of his generation, given as a tribute gift to Apophis to decorate his palaces. It is this act of love that forces a chink in the Hyksos armour, sowing the seeds that must eventually bloom into Apophis' downfall.
The second volume ends with the Thebans regaining all of Lower Egypt and Kamose taking the port of Avaris until finally murdered by the ever-present Hyskos spy whose identity remains a mystery thus paving the way for the final volume and the rise of Pharoah Ahmose, younger brother of Kamose.
Jacq's trilogy is proving an entertaining read and is building up a major sense of injustice at the enormous atrocities carried out by the Hyksos. The body count is so high through the novel that it suffers from a lack of emotiveness at times but it ensures the reader remains fimly on the Eygptian side during this turbulent period of history as they seek, against all the odds, to reclaim their homeland.

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