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Lord of the Silent (Amelia Peabody, Book 13) Mass Market Paperback – April 2, 2002


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Amazon.com Review

Amelia Peabody Emerson is the Mary Poppins of Egypt. Forthright, intrepid, and industrious, she brooks no nonsense from anyone and is armed with an apparently magical parasol. As the legions of fans of Elizabeth Peters's Edwardian archeological mystery series know, Amelia is also possessed of a swift temper, an incorrigible curiosity, and an uncanny proclivity for attracting trouble. But in 1915, with the world gripped by the madness of war, trouble is endemic. In an effort to prevent their son Ramses from being coerced into working for British intelligence (in the sort of endeavor that nearly got him killed a year earlier when he infiltrated a band of Egyptian nationalists and prevented a Turkish-backed uprising), Amelia and husband Emerson and the rest of their dizzyingly large entourage flee England for the reassuringly stoic splendor of their beloved Egyptian ruins.

So much for a quiet dig among the mastabas. With their usual luck, the family promptly finds itself inundated by would-be assassins and nosy journalists. Amelia quickly deduces that Ramses's undercover work is at the root of both threat and curiosity; more puzzling is the appearance of the odd corpse or two and a rash of stunningly efficient tomb robberies. When Ramses and his wife, Nefret, travel to Luxor to check on the security of some of their old excavations, they find an all-too-familiar irritant behind the robberies. It would be telling to reveal his identity, but fans of the series will soon figure it out, with the aid of a little suspension of disbelief. With Ramses and Nefret on one hand, and Amelia and Emerson on the other, engaged in "protecting" the other side from conflict and trouble, the novel unfolds in a merry chase of misdirection and miscommunication.

There is a comforting consistency to Peters's series. By now, all of the characters' quirks are etched in stone like so many well-worn hieroglyphs. Amelia's narrative has the familiarity of a treasured and oft-read letter from a slightly batty aunt. Even the miraculous return of (no, I really can't say), though perhaps intended as a radical plot twist, adheres to the most genteel of mystery traditions, à la Doyle and Christie. Innovation can be overrated; with Peters's flawless record of producing amusing, easily digested novels showing no signs of faltering, fans should devour this morsel--and wait impatiently for the next tasty installment. --Kelly Flynn --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

In Egypt, 1915, the redoubtable English archaeologist Amelia Peabody Emerson and her eccentric and closely knit group of family and friends are up to their old tricks. The Emersons may believe that they are merely engaging in another season of excavation, but legions of devoted readers know that Amelia's archaeological fervor has never stopped her from charging into another thrilling episode of crime-solving, dragging her husband and children enthusiastically along. Amelia's son, Ramses, and his new wife, Nefret, are trying to settle into their married life and find ways to build a more equal relationship with their overwhelming and irrepressibly adventurous parent. Amelia is worried, however, that an officious British army officer might try to recruit Ramses again as a spy (as in the previous book, 2000's He Shall Thunder in the Sky). To keep him out of the spymaster's clutches, she sends Ramses and Nefret off to Luxor to investigate a series of thefts from archaeological sites. As always in this series of uproarious Egyptological mysteries, plenty of strange doings are afoot in the desert, and readers will find all the delicious trappings of a vintage Peters extravaganza lost tombs, kidnappings, deadly attacks, mummies and sinister villains. (May 1)Forecast: Her large and faithful following will ensure that Peters, a Mystery Writers of America Grand Master, once again reaches the lofty heights of the bestseller lists.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (April 2, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380817144
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380817146
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (121 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,197,154 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

ELIZABETH PETERS, whose New York Times best-selling novels are often set against historical backdrops, earned a Ph.D. in Egyptology at the University of Chicago. She also writes best-selling books under the pseudonym Barbara Michaels. She lives in Frederick, Maryland.

Customer Reviews

I've been waiting 12 months for this book to come out and was it worth it.
Lynn E Kullman
Much of the book consists of characters ruminating about things that happened in prior books.
Silence Dogood
I am making my way, once again, through all of the Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters.
Patience E. Patterson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 6, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Elizabeth Peters has been gathering and developing her characters in masterful ways for some time in the wonderful Amelia Peabody series. In Lord of the Silent, Ms. Peters reaps a rich harvest from that preparation in order to provide the richest fabric ever of plot and suspense in the series.
Lord of the Silent is very much part two of a series that Ms. Peters is writing about World War I. I strongly urge you to read He Shall Thunder from the Sky (this book's immediate predecessor) before reading Lord of the Silent. The plots and characters of the two books are so intertwined that you will not appreciate and enjoy Lord of the Silent nearly as much without having read He Shall Thunder from the Sky.
The book opens with vivid scenes from war-time England. Zeppelin raids on London create fear that foreshadows the massive Battle of Britain in World War II. This sets a somber mood of uncontrollable threat for the whole book that is admirably suspenseful. You will wonder when the next bomb might burst. In many ways, the plot's complications are like the effects of a random bombardment . . . bringing danger, fear, discomfort, and damage.
The whole family is in England in 1915. Because of the war, English people cannot cross the continent for travel to Egypt. Ocean-going vessels are the only choice. But submarine warfare is a danger, and neutral liners (like the Lusitania) have been sunk. Should they take the risk and go to Egypt? Who should go? The book opens with these pressing questions. What would you have done?
Part of the family does make it to Egypt, and find a land transformed by the distant war. The hospitals are full of injured soldiers from the disastrous Gallipoli campaign.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By booksforabuck VINE VOICE on June 22, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Amelia Peabody, her husband Emerson, son Ramses, his wife Nefret, and the usual host of odd friends and enemies (both British and Egyptian) are back in this World War I dated mystery.
Someone has restarted the tome robbings that Sethos had dominated. This is clearly intolerable, but is it connected with the strange set of attacks that disrupts the Peabody-Emerson clan's lives. Amelia arranges to send Ramses away to keep him safe, but he seems to end up in even more danger--and so does Amelia. At least arch-enemy Sethos is dead--or is he???
If you like this series (as I do), then celebrate. This is an excellent addition--possibly better than HE SHALL THUNDER IN THE SKY. If you haven't discovered it, then give it a try. The combination of Egyptian archeology, murder, and World War I spying makes for an exciting read.
The strength of this novel comes only partly from the plot and action. Author Elizabeth Peters obviously loves her characters--and the reader is likely to love them as well. Opinionated, quirky, and laced with post-Victorian manners and clever dialogue, Amelia, Emerson, Ramses, and the rest make you want to keep turning the pages.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on May 1, 2001
Format: Hardcover
In 1915, archeologist Amelia Peabody returns to Cairo for the season accompanied by her spouse Emerson, their son Ramses, and his wife Nefret. Amelia quickly realizes that the charm of the city has been muted by the arrival of European agents from both camps and blatant tomb robbers. Still Luxor is so out of the way, Amelia expects a serene dignified dig.

However, her dreams of quiet success turn nightmarish when Amelia finds a corpse that requires law enforcement to date the homicide. As the war heats up in Northern Africa, the murder count rises too. Amelia, worrying about the killer striking again, begins her brand of sleuthing to uncover the identity of the culprit before her family is harmed.

The latest Amelia Peabody historical mystery contains all the elements that make this series such a delight. The who-done-is cleverly devised and the glimpses at Egyptology through a historiographer's eyes are intelligently used to foster the feel of the times (along with World War I) without slowing down the plot. Still, the tale belongs to the intrepid Amelia who may suffer perils like a Pauline, but rescues herself and others rather than wait for the handsome hero to arrive. Somewhat a witty satire, LORD OF SILENT is a fabulous novel that will add to the reputation of excellence sub-genre fans and critics have bestowed on author Elizabeth Peters.

Harriet Klausner
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By tregatt on May 12, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I think that Elizabeth Peters has outdone herself with this latest Amelia Peabody mystery -- "Lord Of The Silent" definitely makes for compelling reading, and I for one could not put this novel down! The story flowed smoothly and effortlessly from subplot to subplot, and the air of suspense and tension was steadily sustained. All the characters, old favourites and a couple of new ones, were all well depicted and fleshed out; and best of all, Elizabeth Peters had set up a couple of red herring suspects, so that the mystery addict in me was happily occupied trying to figure out who the real culprit was!
"The Lord of The Silent" takes place during WWI, but not even the chaos of a war can keep the Emersons away from their dig in Egypt. Complications however arise when Ramses is attacked within days of their arrival. His spying activities for the British government (faithfully recounted in "He Shall Thunder In the Sky") has earned him enemies from a rather rabid and fanatical rebel faction, and it looks as if the remaining members of this faction are now after him. Concerned for his safety, Amelia and Emerson send Ramses and his wife, Nefret, to Luxor: apparently all the chaos that the war has generated has caused gangs of thieves to be even more bold than usual in their pilfering of archaeological finds. Emerson's plan is to have Ramses keep an eye on his interests in Luxor and investigate whatever theft may arise, and so keep him out of harm's way, while Amelia and Emerson look into the matter of who exactly is after Ramses and how to stop these murderous
attacks. However this proves not to be as easy as they had hoped when first
they themselves are assaulted, and then they uncover a fresh 'corpse' in the
burial tomb that they are escavating.
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