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Cleopatra's Daughter: A Novel Paperback – July 13, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
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.
—Margaret George, New York Times bestselling author of The Memoirs of Cleopatra
“Michelle Moran has already made Ancient Egypt her own fictional domain. With this compelling novel of the legendary Cleopatra’s daughter, she now stakes a claim to Ancient Rome, too.”
—Sharon K. Penman, New York Times bestselling author of Devil’s Brood
“Cleopatra’s Daughter is historical fiction at its finest. With her exquisite attention to detail and her beautifully crafted characters, Michelle Moran does not just visit the past–she resurrects it.”
—Deanna Raybourn, bestselling author of the Lady Julia Grey series
“No one captures the immediacy and rich detail of the ancient world quite like Michelle Moran.”
—bestselling author Robin Maxwell
“From the tragic fall of Cleopatra’s Alexandria to the treacherous hills of imperial Rome, Michelle Moran spins a captivating tale of the daughter of Egypt’s most famous queen, a princess whose courageous determination to survive is as exciting and dramatic as the time in which she lived.”
—C. W. Gortner, author of The Last Queen
From the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
The orphaned children are hauled off to Rome and into the home of Octavia, where Selene's life becomes entwined with some of the great figures of Ancient Rome, including Octavian, his wife Livia, his daughter Julia, and the future emperor Tiberius. The children dwell in uncertainty, never knowing if they will be allowed to live, or what their future hopes might be - - and I don't want to give away too much of what happens. But, remember, all those around Octavian had reason to be cautious, if not actually fearful.
An enthralling aspect of the book is how the author has carefully portrayed not only Ancient Rome itself, but also what is known of the personalities of these famous Romans. We meet a willful young Julia and a sinister young Tiberius, and we know exactly who they are and what they will be like when they grow up.
Almost all of the action takes place in Rome, so the book may be of more interest to those wanting to read about Rome than those wanting to read about Egypt.
A brief timeline and list of characters at the beginning of the book and a glossary at the end help those who may need a refresher in who's who and what's what.
There is a fictional subplot about the search for the leader of an underground anti-slavery movement that I sometimes found to be distracting.Read more ›
I've recently finished Colleen McCullough's Roman series and I was hungry for more. When I heard of a book that fills in the years between the battle of Actium and Robert Graves' "I Claudius", I eagerly snapped it up.
Unfortunately, this author has no business trying to enter the company of Graves and McCullough.
Many other reviewers here have already pointed out a number of inaccuracies in this book, as well as the superficiality of its characters. But that's simply bad writing. If that was the only problem, I wouldn't have bothered writing this review. But there's another problem with this book that I must speak up about.
The author draws Selene as if she's a teenager from Boston, who's never known anything but liberal politics. A modern American kid, who dozed off during history class the day they talked about Rome --100% clue-free about the ancient world.
Selene is shocked-I-tell-you-shocked! at how Rome treats its lower classes. Oh please.
Selene is the daughter of a Pharaoh, who essentially owned all of Egypt. So did all Egyptian slaves have health insurance and pension plans? She lived in the household of a head of state who went to war against Rome and her father was a Roman. How could she be so laughably ignorant about it when she arrives?
The historical Selene would have known *precisely* how severe the punishments would be for slaves attempting to assasinate a ruler, in Rome or out of it. Instead we get a time-travelling American teenager who thinks it's completely unfair to take away her iPod, let alone execute slaves. Oh the shock, the horror!
Enough. I can't read another page of this drivel. Done now.
What really bugged me was the derivative plotline. She clearly read the Scarlet Pimpernel and transmuted him into the "Red Eagle" (a masked, patrician do-gooder who drives Octavian nuts) Could the Red Eagle be Marcellus? Or the Greek tutor? They seek him here, they seek him there, they seek that demmed Pimpernel everywhere!!!
Apart from Selene, the remaining characters are plaster cut-outs, lacking any dimension. Octavian is power-hungry. Livia is just a bitch. Octavia an earth-mother and Tiberius a supercilious jerk.
I've read I, Claudius, which is based on the writings of Suetonius, and there is a whole lot more to the family of Augustus than this story attempts. As juvenile fiction, it's below par. As ordinary fiction, you can find better. As historical fiction, go read Mary RenaultThe Bull from the Sea if you want well-researched, interesting, character driven stories about the ancient world!!
I had no idea it was a YA novel. Not advertised as such, and the first few pages of war, death, parental suicide etc. seem a bit much for a young adult to read, even under the guise of 'historical fiction'. However, the YA slant quickly became clear when the book degenerated to Valley Girl teenage angst, makeup sessions, and shopping parties in ancient Rome.
Likewise I was misled by the back cover comments about 'meticulous research' for this book. Wrongo! My background in Classics is basic, but even I found numerous glaring historical and social errors throughout. Girls and boys in ancient Rome didn't 'go to school' together. Upper class girls rarely had any formal schooling beyond the basics, as the attitude was that they should stick to learning how to run a household and anything else was beyond them. Brothers and sisters were not allowed to share sleeping quarters as teens, and indeed they lead pretty separate lives long before age 10, as did Roman men and women. Both sexes dining together was right out for adults, though exceptions might be made for Caesar's family and younger children. These are just the minor gripes.
The major ones are that the book reads like a pack of present-day mall-rat teenagers were somehow transplanted into ancient Rome. Also I disliked the "Red Eagle' subplot, not just because it is complete fiction, but because it is clumsy, hackneyed, and totally unnecessary. Also there were major political and historical gaffes too numerous to go into here. This is a great pity, because this author has a lot of writing talent. Too bad she doesn't write what she knows.
Call this a Roman / Egyptian novel if you must, but label it for what it is, young adult romance fiction.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The book is a long read. At first I thought it was too much history, but, after pushing past that, the characters draw you in. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Mary Ann Karnuth
this is one of those books you hold onto, and slow down as the pages get thinner-- you don't want to finish.Published 25 days ago by Longmontlady
I'll admit that I'm a huge Michelle Moran fan - I've loved every book of hers I've read, which is nearly all of them. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Emma
Book 3 of 3. Michelle Moran has a wonderful gift of writing historical books with a great story-line. Read morePublished 2 months ago by deb
This book made me read the authors other books. I was never disappointed.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer