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Ancient Egypt: Tales of Gods and Pharaohs Hardcover – September 13, 2011

19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Several stories from ancient Egypt are exuberantly retold in this picture book for older readers...Williams infuses her retellings with a great deal of humor, and nearly every page includes an array of subtle jokes that are delightfully extended in her entertaining, often cheeky illustrations, which blend two distinct but compatible styles, those of comic books and Egyptian tomb paintings.
—Booklist

About the Author

Marcia Williams has written and illustrated many books in her highly successful and entertaining comic strip style. Among her many retellings are CHAUCER'S CANTERBURY TALES, CHARLES DICKENS AND FRIENDS, MORE TALES FROM SHAKESPEARE. Marcia Williams lives in London.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 4
  • Lexile Measure: 730L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (September 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 076365308X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763653088
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #731,850 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Marcia Williams is famous for her retellings of classic stories. From Shakespeare and Dickens to the Canterbury Tales and Greek Myths, her humorous comic-strip illustration is hugely popular all over the globe. She lives in London.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Nicola Mansfield on October 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Reason for Reading: I love mythology, Egyptian Mythology, and this series of books by Marcia Williams.

Typical of Marcia Williams' books this is set up in a comic strip format with the narrative told underneath the strips and funny, comical asides coming from the characters depicted in the cartoons. The most popular tales are told here in a fairly linear order so that one story leads onto the next with the exception of jumping many years to Cleopatra at the end. The book begins with the mythology of Ra, Isis, Thoth, etc and goes on to tell the tales of famous pharaohs Hatsheput, Thutmose, Tut, Cleopatra, etc. So the book isn't entirely mythology, though myths do surround some of the Pharaohs. Williams' artwork is beautiful as usual and the book includes two spreads where the pages unfold outwards to create large panoramic scenes. One thing that is missing, from her other books, is the usual detailed framed artwork around each page; here she has simply framed each piece with what look like papyrus plants. An added plus though, is along the bottom of each page is a continuous ticker where a cat tells a running commentary on interesting facts about Egyptian life: the role of cats (of course), agriculture, mummies, inventions, etc. A gorgeous book when all said and done; the tales are a good selection for an introduction to Egyptian mythology and pharaohs.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By M. Heiss on October 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover
We have gotten so much information and enjoyment from Marcia Williams' signature style; this book is no exception.

This overview of the mythology of Ancient Egypt also includes the reigns of some of the more important Pharoahs -- your children will have a more complete understanding of ancient Egyptian culture after reading this book.

"Ancient Egypt:Tales of Gods and Pharoahs" is so entertaining, you may even forget it's educational.

Beautiful illustrations, including a 4-page foldout and a 2-page foldout. Marcia Williams has an oddball sense of humor that we find very appealing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Otiliasmum on November 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Both me and my 7 years old daughter enjoyed this book tremendously. The illustrations are beautiful and organized such way that one can follow three sides of the same story in one reading: the main narrative, the dialogues between protagonists of the main story and, at the bottom of each page humorous comments of the sacred cat......... My kid has fun and learns without realizing it and that is great!
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Format: Paperback
My middle school aged sons and I are studying Egypt, including Egyptian religion and mythology, and so checked this book out from the library. Yes it is very colorful, but some of the sidebar animations detract from the main story AND I question her target audience. I mean, it's animated like it is for young children but do young children really need to be reading these stories? These are NOT family-friendly fairy tales! To prove my point, here is an excerpt from the story titled "Horus the Avenger":

Seth was Pharaoh of Egypt, but the crown really belonged to his nephew, Horus. Seth decided to kill him, as he'd killed Osiris, Horus' father. Horus was still a child and guarded by his mother, Isis, on a floating island. One night, as the island bumped against the banks of the Nile, Seth crossed onto it. He took the shape of a scorpion and crawled into Horus' room where he stung him.

All night Horus screamed as Isis tried to heal him, but by morning he appeared dead. The wise god Thoth comforted Isis and reassured her that she would see her son again. Horus had passed into the Duat, but only so that his father, Osiris, could prepare him to fight Seth and avenge their deaths. Horus remained with Osiris until he became a man and was ready to meet Seth in battle.

Amen Ra took Horus to the land of the living in his sacred boat. Seth was ready and waiting. He charged at Horus and aimed a bolt of fire into his eyes. Horus was blinded and unable to fight back. He roared with pain and anger. It was many weeks before Horus regained his sight and could go after Seth again.

Every time Horus thought he had his enemy cornered, the wily Seth escaped. So Horus gathered a great army and chased Seth up the river Nile.
Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Michelle Wilson-Schwartz on March 8, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My son is 5 but has a high reading level
and is very interested in ancient Egypt
He says: I can learn and am able to look up the names of ancient egyptian
gods and goddesses. I like the look of the book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amethystwaters on August 5, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This wa sused for a librray program on ancient Egypt for middle school aged children. The stories were interesting, the graphics colorful and the humorous comments were a hit with the 9-12 year crowd.
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Format: Hardcover
There's no denying that there's something mysteriously exciting about hieroglyphics, pharaohs, pyramids and buried treasures. Perhaps that's why I never met a child who was not fascinated by Ancient Egypt. Ancient Egypt: Tales of Gods and Pharaohs is a very unique and creative book. Author/illustrator Marcia Williams retells nine Ancient Egyptian tales using the format of a comic book. But don't be mistaken - unlike a regular comic book, this is a very sturdy, well-crafted hardcover book with vibrant illustrations using the quintessential Egyptian colors and high quality paper. Dialogue goes on inside the comic frames, while stories are told in bits beneath each frame. The dialogue is often funny, and oh so entertaining. The best part is that young readers will learn a lot about Egyptian culture and discoveries, without having to study a boring textbook. Your child will love the dialogue and the illustrations. There's a lot to look at here and a lot to learn too.
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