Monday, September 14, 2009

Michelle Moran Week - Review of The Heretic Queen

I thought in honour of the fact The Heretic Queen was released in paperback recently and the fact that it is a potential prize in the give-away, I would repost my review of it from last year. It's not one of my better reviews, but you will hopefully get an idea!

In ancient Egypt, a forgotten princess must overcome her family’s past and remake history.

The winds of change are blowing through Thebes. A devastating palace fire has killed the Eighteenth Dynasty’s royal family—all with the exception of Nefertari, the niece of the reviled former queen, Nefertiti. The girl’s deceased family has been branded as heretical, and no one in Egypt will speak their names. A relic of a previous reign, Nefertari is pushed aside, an unimportant princess left to run wild in the palace. But this changes when she is taken under the wing of the Pharaoh’s aunt, then brought to the Temple of Hathor, where she is educated in a manner befitting a future queen.

Soon Nefertari catches the eye of the Crown Prince, and despite her family’s history, they fall in love and wish to marry. Yet all of Egypt opposes this union between the rising star of a new dynasty and the fading star of an old, heretical one. While political adversity sets the country on edge, Nefertari becomes the wife of Ramesses the Great. Destined to be the most powerful Pharaoh in Egypt, he is also the man who must confront the most famous exodus in history.

Sweeping in scope and meticulous in detail, The Heretic Queen is a novel of passion and power, heartbreak and redemption.
I am very excited to be able to post this on the day that the book is being released in my neck of the woods! It was a speed read, let me tell you! I only received it on Friday and didn't get a chance to really get to it until Saturday, so finishing it on Monday was quite the accomplishment. I don't even feel like I spent that much time with it, so I am surprised I am finished! It could've been a chore because I had myself on a deadline, but what happened was I wanted to read it quickly because I was enjoying it so much! So, that must mean I liked it, right? And, I did. The Heretic Queen joins the ranks as one of the best books I have read this year.

I do apologize this is rather late being posted. I was feeling a bit under the weather, so I was sleeping instead of posting. Now, I am awake and I get to gush about Michelle's book. First of all, I am shocked how fast I read this book. Mainly because I never felt like I read it all that much and then I was finished! I actually closed the book after those last few pages in surprise. It was such a readable book. I was pulled into the story from the very first page and didn't want to put it down into I saw how everything turned out for Nefertari, the narrator. Nefertari is the niece of Pharaoh Nefertiti and the daughter of the narrator from the last book, Mutny. Her family has been erased from history, her aunt is called the Heretic Queen, and their names are not to be spoken aloud. They turned their backs on the gods and, as a result, a plague was sent to destroy them.

This book is about a different generation than Nefertiti, but it still ties up any loose ends you were wondering about from the previous book. Then, it takes the story a bit further. Much of what happens in the book you expect, it is based on fact afterall, but at the same time you feel surprised that it happens because Nefertari is more like her mother than her aunt. She is not power-hungry in the same way that Nefertiti was. She is more interested in resurrecting her family as a part of Egypts past. She is still a wonderful narrator, though, and it was interesting to see her rise to power. Ramses is a very well-known Egyptian character, but it was nice to hear his story from the point-of-view of the women. This is just not something that is done all that often and they were just as important as the men.

I really hope that as a result of this week, people who have never read Michelle's book before will take the chance to do so. She is a very wonderful author and we are very lucky to have her on our blog this week! I also want to thank her for sending me my copy of The Heretic Queen. She mentioned on her blog how excited she was that she had a week and how she was running around her house shouting! Well, I was equally as excited to open my book and find that it was signed! A personalized one at that!


  1. I really enjoyed your review- especially since I read Nefertiti and then just jumped into Cleopatra's daughter..I have The Heretic Queen, but just didn't read in order. I can't wait to read this one too. Your review is wonderful:)

  2. This book sure sounds so good. I have always enjoyed stories about Egypt, and I even named a cat after Ramses after reading some book about him, and her

  3. I bought Nefertiti about a month ago, and I'm glad that this sequel was just as good. I look forward to reading it.

  4. Great review. I love books that I can't put down. The only downfall is that I'm sad when I'm done reading it because I was so into the characters. I am excited to read these books and can't wait to get my hands on them!

  5. I just got the audio of The Heretic Queen from the library today. Looking forward to listening to a great story! I loved Nefertiti and am excited to continue the story.