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The Curse of the Pharaohs: My Adventures with Mummies Library Binding – May 1, 2004


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-8–Some children will already be familiar with the work of this Egyptian archaeologist from TV documentaries about his excavations along the Nile. Hawass is passionate about this work and effectively relates his enthusiasm for it in this first-person account that has the same immediacy as the televised specials. The history of the mummy's curse becomes the frame of his narrative, but the author is at his best when describing his excavations, their inherent dangers (ancient germs, crumbling rock, snakes), and the excitement of discovery. His stories of grave robbers caught millennium ago, and documented in papyrus texts, are fascinating. He also discusses his recent excavations at Giza and his discovery of multichambered tombs at Bahariya Oasis that contain hundreds of mummies. After providing readers with some history of the many myths and legends surrounding the "curse," which he attributes to novelists and "silly" Hollywood movies, he adds a few of his own stories and experiences with the "magic" of the tombs. The full-color photos are superb; they include clear close-up shots of mummies, statues, artifacts, sites, and a number of the scientist at work. There are also a few helpful cutaway diagrams. Appendixes provide tips for kids thinking about a future in archaeology, information on mummification, and useful glossaries. While the exciting title and cover will draw young readers in, it's Hawass's passion, storytellling skills, and the terrific illustrations that will keep them reading.—Daryl Grabarek, School Library Journal
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 4-6. "Why do [people] want to believe that the ancient Egyptians wish to reach out over thousands of years and do us harm?" asks Hawass, the head of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities. The answer, he argues, goes back to the opening of King Tut's tomb, when the deaths of several people associated with the discovery fueled notions of a "pharaoh's curse," propagated by journalists and Hollywood. Hawass tries to refute manifestations of the so-called curse by citing "natural explanations" or just plain coincidence. Unfortunately, the sheer quantity of eerie concurrences (as when Hawass suffered a heart attack just before announcing a major discovery) may unintentionally leave some readers more convinced than ever of the ancients' ill intentions. When not devoted to furthering his debunking agenda, Hawass' writing is passionate, informative, and kid friendly (he notes that "mummies smell awful"). Even so, what will probably most attract aspiring archeologists are the National Geographic-quality photographs, which lend tantalizing immediacy to real-life tales from the crypt. Ample end matter concludes. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Library Binding: 160 pages
  • Publisher: National Geographic Children's Books (May 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0792269632
  • ISBN-13: 978-0792269632
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 0.6 x 11.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,557,432 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jean A. Jones on December 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I originally borrowed this book from the local library to read to my 9 year old daughter but it proved to be so interesting I bought a copy to reread to her from time to time. This is a great introduction to modern Egyptology by Egypt's renowned archaeologist. I would recommend getting this book for anyone you know who is seriously interested in studying ancient Egypt.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Virginia N. Jones on August 12, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Well written and easy to read. Would be a good book to get children interested in the pharoahs. Wonderful pictures.

Ginny J
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sarah M. Atkinson on November 13, 2006
Format: Library Binding
This is an excellent book on Egyptology. It has a more personal narration then most books on Egypt--partly due to the authors use of first person narrative and partly due to his passion and enthusiasm on the subject. The effect is the reader takes more then just a factual view of data surrounding stories of Curses in Egypt but rather a personalized look at Archaeology. This is an excellent book for any school aged child weather he is interested or not in Archeology.

This book starts out with and introduction about Zahi Hawass and some of the sites he has worked on including the tombs of the pyramid builders. He then goes into talking about Tutankhamun and how the rumors of a curse began. He then describes some of the information known about ancient grave robbers as well as his own experiences with the curse.

The Appendix in this book is amazing. It has 5 parts:

*Tips for becoming and Archaeologist - This is a good guide for children who dream of following in Dr. Hawass's footsteps.

*Tracing Egypt's glorious past--One of the best brief Chronologys of the periods and kingdoms of Ancent Egypt.

*How mummies were made--this was one of the few spots that was a bit dry.

*Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt--While this section is not compleate (there were I think thousands of different Gods and Goddesses) it does provide a brief description on 17 of the major ones.

*Glossary--Basic glossary of terms used in the book.
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By Dorothea on April 25, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I choose this rating because I received the product in a timely manner and in excellent condition.

Honestly I have always been intrigued by Archeology, History, etc... I have been watching all the documentaries by Dr. Zahii Hawass for years. When I received this book and opened it to the first page I had tingly feelings all through me and I read it all at once. Dr. Zahii Hawass is too cool! Just to think thousands of years ago and we are able to see and understand through others dedication and difficult work. I just wish people would leave ancient artifacts and buildings alone and leave them to the professionals. I wish I was able to read Cartophogrophy, Hieroglyphics.

How do we know where we are going if we do not know where we have been?

Awesome!
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