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Book Description The first book in the Ancient Egyptian series (1993) City of Thebes. The Festival of Osiris. Loyal subjects of the Pharaoh gather to pay homage to their leader, but Taita - a wise and formidably gifted eunuch slave - sees him only as a symbol of a kingdom's fading glory.
From Booklist Smith is a consistently popular writer, and his latest endeavor has considerable publicity push behind it. In other words, expect high demand. He goes fictionally where Norman Mailer, in Ancient Evenings (1983), went before: pharaonic Egypt. But he ventures forth into this world with less demanding results; it's simply easier for the reader to fathom Smith's re-creation than Mailer's, because it's less mystical, less detailed, more concrete. That's not to say, though, that Smith has not done his homework as he tells the story of Taita the eunuch, slave to a noble's daughter. Taita narrates the dramatic events of which he was either witness or participant as his mistress receives the dubious honor of marriage to the pharaoh. The brutality of life in ancient times is everywhere evident in Taita's tale, which involves fatal intrigue at every turn. It's clear Smith knows his subject: his graphic depiction of lust, bloodletting, politics, and, in Taita's case, honor is firmly grounded in rich details that evoke the period.
About the author Wilbur Smith was born in Central Africa in 1933. He was educated at Michaelhouse and Rhodes University. He became a full-time writer in 1964 after the successful publication of WHEN THE LION FEEDS, and has since written nearly thirty novels, all meticulously researched on his numerous expeditions worldwide. His books are now translated into twenty-six languages. Wilbur Smith lives in London and continues to have an abiding concern for the peoples and wildlife of his native continent, an interest strongly reflected in his novels.