Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cleopatra's Daughter


Cleopatra's Daughter tells the story of Selene Kleopatra, daughter of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra of Ptolemy, who after the defeat and suicide of her parents, if left to live under the watchful eyes of the ruling family of Ancient Rome.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and am looking forward to reading Moran's other works. It's extremely easy to read, and isn't bogged down with too much historical detail. I found the characters and their stories to be engaging, and I would recommend it to others except for one major caveat.

Moran adds an additional element to the story, she creates a character/plot called the 'Red Eagle' which fights against the establishment for the freedom of slaves. This plot is meant to add an extra feeling of suspense and action to the plot which I feel is completely unneccesary and sort of ruins the atmosphere of the book. Immediately it adds a very 'modern' concept to the ancient world, yes there were those who were against slavery in ancient times but this 'red eagle' hero figure feels very modern. The entire slavery subplot contaminated the storyline for me, as Selene is seen as very anti-slavery, which just has me sort of shaking my head - she was raised with slaves tending to her every need, why would she start to question it now? I know it has to do with the fact that she now is a captive, but she is never a slave or experiences the life of a slave.

Moran is an excellent writer and I did enjoy the story, I just feel that it would have been much better and realistic for her to concentrate on the dangers for Selene being in Rome such as political intrique, the senate etc. This is touched on briefly but isn't explored to its potential. Reading is about suspension of belief but the 'red eagle' plot line pulled me out of this belief. I thoroughly enjoyed Moran's writing style and story (except for that aspect) and I LOVE anything to do with Egypt so this gets a 7 out of ten from me.

I'm looking forward to reading her other works Nefertiti and The Heretic Queen.

If anyone has any recommendations of egyptian historical fiction, please leave a comment :)

2 comments:

Ailsa on December 9, 2010 at 11:04 AM said...

This sounds really interesting, Emily. It's a shame she's added extra, more modern things, but it sounds like it is still a good book, and it's certainly an interesting concept, wondering what life would have been like for that girl.
I'll keep an eye open for any of her books.

ifmary on December 9, 2010 at 12:33 PM said...

I haven't heard anything about this books but it sounds good, great review !

Thanks Ailsa for your comment :). Do you learn french at school ?

I live yours blog i'm following you now !

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