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The Last Camel Died at Noon (Amelia Peabody, #6)
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The Last Camel Died at Noon (Amelia Peabody #6)

4.19  ·  Rating Details  ·  11,224 Ratings  ·  401 Reviews
Bestselling author Peters brings back 19th-century Egyptologist Amelia Peabody and her entourage in a delicious caper that digs up mystery in the shadow of the pyramids.
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published September 1991 by Little, Brown & Company (first published 1991)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kavita Ramesh
Jan 01, 2016 Kavita Ramesh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is one of my favorites installments in this series, mainly because Nefret (LOVE her name!!!) is introduced in this one, and also because it is beautifully imagined.

And the book is named with such a catchy title: "The Last Camel Died at Noon" ... One of my all-time favorite book names! =)

This was another great installment in the Amelia Peabody series! Usually, my favourite part is the snappy reparte between Amelia and Emerson, with whatever mystery or mayhem they're trying to solve being secondary. But in this outing, the actual story was pretty fascinating.

The Emerson family become caught up in the mystery involving a long-ago friend of Emerson's who disappeared with his young, beautiful wife years ago, while trying to find a lost civilization. A note has been delivered to the
I really liked this story. I think it is my favorite one too. It seemed more complex and there was a lot of Egyption archeology information going on throughout. Lots of difficult names to keep track of, was the only complaint I had. There were some great lines between Amelia and her husband!
Jamie Collins
The plot of this one didn't do much for me, but I nonetheless enjoyed another expedition with the Emerson-Peabodys. They continue to amuse me, and there's a particularly touching bit when the family has a closer than usual brush with death. And of course, the Egyptian scenery is always interesting.

I like that this book begins at a crisis point, then flashes back to tell how the family arrived there. It was a nice departure from the usual linear storytelling in this series.

I hope to one day see R
Jan 11, 2009 Suburbangardener rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
In this book, the author has taken a departure from her usual style to pay homage to her heroine's favorite author, Rider Haggard, who wrote such classics as "King Solomon's Mines." It's a fun romp through the desert with less archeology than adventure.
This has been my favorite book in the series so far. The story is filled with the characteristic melodramatic flourishes, sense of humour and know-it-all characters that I've so enjoyed in all the past books but somehow this one was just better.
Jun 14, 2012 Colleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I have to say this is my favorite Amelia Peabody novel after the very first one. I don't know what exactly it is about this novel, maybe it is the fact that it is the first one in the series I ever read, that makes me love it but it is one of my favorite. Amelia and Emerson are as amazing, brilliant, and funny as ever, but I think the fact that we see some weakness in them is another reason that I love this novel so much. They need outside help to get them out of their situation this time and I ...more
Jonathan Palfrey
This is the Elizabeth Peters tribute to H. Rider Haggard. She's chosen to do what Arthur Ransome did a few times: to take her familiar set of characters and put them into a fantasy situation, for fun and variety.

It's a relatively mild fantasy, there's nothing supernatural about it, but she allows the Emerson family to be led into a mad quest for long-missing persons in the desert, where they almost die of thirst before finding themselves captives of a lost ancient civilization hidden in obscure
Tara Carpenter
Apr 18, 2008 Tara Carpenter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great series starring Amelia Peabody Emerson. I loved the first book, Crocodile on the Sandbank, but since then they have gotten a little formulaic. This book was a refreshing departure from the norm. We find the Emersons discovering a modern-day (to them) civilization populated by the descendants of the ancient peoples this archaelogical family lives to study. And you can imagine the chaos that ensues with the introduction of the Father of Curses and the Sitt Hakim to this hidden city ...more
Wendy Jones
Mar 15, 2013 Wendy Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Now you must forgive my choice of words but this book is a jolly good caper. It takes you back to the days when the British Upper Crust spoke in such a manner. I love the Amelia Peabody mysteries and this one maintains the usual high standards of the others. This Time Emerson and Amelia are excavating archeological sites in the Sudan and before you know it up to their necks in trouble. Elizabeth Peters has an evocative writing style which means you can picture the exotic scenes perfectly. The ch ...more
Sep 25, 2010 Angela rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You really need to point at Book 6 of the Amelia Peabodies, The Last Camel Died at Noon, as one of the pivotal books of the series--because it's here that arguably the most important character in the entire cast (aside from, of course, the Emersons themselves) is introduced. The Last Camel Died at Noon is the book that introduces Nefret, and it's the tale of how the Emersons discover and rescue her from a lost civilization deep in the Sudan.

It's this book as well where Peters starts throwing aro
Dec 29, 2008 Donna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I pecked away at the first half of this novel, dutifully reading a few pages a day—not high praise for a mystery novel. Of the various elements that can keep a reader engaged, (plot, character, theme, etc.), the only one that worked for me was setting. I was intrigued with insights into problems of survival in the Sahara, as well as information regarding ancient Egypt and archeology (which I presume was, to some degree, authentic). The plot picked up toward the end, and I was able to get engaged ...more
This was actually the first book I read in this series as a tween/teen - it was in Mum's bookshelf and the ridiculous title appealed to me enormously. And that one book ended with me tracking down and reading all/purchasing all Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels' books. Bibliophile success!

Delightful re-read - the sheer ridiculous adventure a la Rider Haggard (to whom this book is an homage) is enlivened by the sharp storytelling and sharper characters that are so subtly outrageous that even
Lynne Tull
May 13, 2013 Lynne Tull rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I have to hand it to Ms. Peters...she is teaching me everything about Egypt whether I want to learn it or not. In the meantime, she scatters it with her delightful characters and a mystery to solve. I don't know that I will retain the Egyptian history part or not, but I enjoy reading about it while I am trying to solve the mystery before Amelia, Emerson, or Ramses do. Highly recommend the series to you. Don't let a little or more than a little Egyptian discourage you.
Oct 17, 2015 Betty rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite books by Elizabeth Peters. I have read it many times as I have the series. I treasure my books. I miss my visits with Amelia and family. I learned a lot aBout the times and Egypt.
Feb 11, 2009 Amanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 06, 2015 Spinster rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
I love the Emersons but I wouldn't be able to take more than one book at a time, with appropriate intervals. They're very good entertainment but a bit too much sometimes, especially with the repetitiveness.

In The Last Camel Died at Noon the mystery was a little different from the usual, there not being any apparent dead bodies to start with. The setting was also different, which was actually a welcome twist to the usual pyramids and ancient mummies and artefacts. Not that I don't like all those,
Zoe and the Edge

He could speak Arabic like a native, read three different scripts of ancient Egyptian...Latin, Hebrew, and Greek....sing a wide variety of vulgar songs in Arabic, and ride almost anything with four legs. He had no other useful skills.

I always forget how much I love Amelia's humour.
But you can't forget Emerson's sense of wit either.

Amelia - “I shudder to think what unimaginable horror can have reduced him to such straits.”
“No, you don't,” said Emerson. “You revel in unimaginable horror
Amelia Peabody-Emerson's voice in this series is wonderful. While I had started reading this book some time ago, I had to put it back on the shelf because lack of time and interest. It wasn't a hard book to pick back up again, and I quickly became re-engaged with the story.
BJ Rose
Instead of solving a mystery that develops as they're excavating, Amelia & Emerson are off to find out what happened years ago to a missing archaeologist and his wife. There is much mention of H. Rider Haggard and King Solomon's Mines. After a grueling trek through the desert, which almost kills Amelia, there is a hidden city and of course information about the missing archaeologist (did we ever doubt that they would be successful?!) An interesting conclusion to their search, and of course A ...more
The Emersons are headed back to the field, this time to Napata in the Sudan. As usual they find themselves not doing excavation, but stuck in the middle of mystery and adventure. This one involves a missing man, an undiscovered culture, and political intrigue. The family emerges from it all with a young girl, the daughter of a friend, whom they take in to their home.

What kept me listening? As usual, it was Peters' use of language, humor, and knowledge of the Middle EAst. Rosenblatt's narration b
This series is NOT the series I thought it was. Either that, or, after enjoying the Vicky Bliss book I read, I wanted to read Peter's universe in order. Not quite sure why I got this instead of the first VB book, now.

For a historical fiction book, it's great. EXACTLY what people who enjoy Victorian era books would enjoy. I, however, am fickle and didn't enjoy just *how* historically accurate the tone of the book was. Because of this, I didn't enjoy the characters. Then there was the plot, which
Apr 02, 2015 Carmen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A completely enjoyable read!!! What fun!
I actually had to join Good Reads just to review this book. I have frequently read reviews on here and appreciate the reviews in general. In the case of this book, I do not understand the great reviews for The Last Camel..which is many times cited as being the 'best of the series.' For perspective, I love mysteries of all kinds and historical fiction. I never met a Barbara Michaels book which I did not LOVE. Hard to believe this is the same author. This book was just boring to me. It seemed as i ...more
Oct 07, 2015 Jared rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I liked Elizabeth Peter's Crocodile on the Sandbank enough to give her another try. It was a little weird jumping from book #1 to book #6 in the series, but I didn't feel like I was missing anything, really, since I already knew the main two characters and it was a standalone plot. The book was okaaaay. I thought the "lost civilization" aspect was interesting and also enjoyed the thought of (view spoiler). Once again ...more
Oct 06, 2015 QNPoohBear rated it really liked it
The Emerson-Peabodys are back to their investigations. Since the British Army has pushed into the Sudan, Emerson insists they investigate the ancient city of Napata, which is thought to be a precursor to Egyptian civilization. Their plans are interrupted by yet another aristocrat. Lord Blacktower wants Emerson to find his long-lost son who disappeared in the Sudan 14 years ago. Lord Blacktower's grandson, Willoughby Forthright, believes his grandfather is crazy and the evidence presented is fake ...more
Sarah Wynde
I never read the original stories that this book is an homage to, and I suspect that if I had, it would have worked better for me. As it was, I enjoyed it, but it felt more random than the typical mystery, with elements popping up unexpectedly, sort of out of the blue, and disappearing just as randomly. For example, Amelia passionately wants to help the servant class but then they just walk away. Why are they keeping the secret of a kingdom where half the population are slaves? How does it benef ...more
Kirsti (Melbourne on my mind)
I love this series. It's totally ridiculous but also a lot of fun and I just...I'm really glad I'm rereading it. This one is very reminiscent of H. Rider Haggard - lost cities, chases through the desert, stumbling across unexpected political dramas, "will we ever get back to civilisation" debates. Sure, it was a little longer than was strictly necessary. But it made me snort laugh time and time again, and it was buckets of fun.
Nov 11, 2014 Mars rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Maybe 2.5

Everything prior to the last camel actually dying was surprisingly uninteresting. Given that this event actually happens around halfway through the book, that's quite a lot of uninteresting.

The not-uninteresting bits are... well, they're mostly like Conan knock-offs. It's entertaining to read, but very little of it actually makes sense if you stop to think about it - the underlying premise is ridiculous, everything could have been done with orders of magnitude less effort and convoluted
May 14, 2008 Kristen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
I really liked the Vicki Bliss book I read of hers better, but this was an interesting read with lots of Eygptology and swashbuckling going on to make it entertaining enough to finish.
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Elizabeth Peters is a pen name of Barbara Mertz. She also writes as Barbara Michaels as well as her own name. Born and brought up in Illinois, she earned her Ph.D. in Egyptology from the University of Chicago. Mertz was named Grand Master at the inaugural Anthony Awards in 1986 and Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America at the Edgar Awards in 1998. She lived in a historic farmhouse in Fred ...more
More about Elizabeth Peters...

Other Books in the Series

Amelia Peabody (1 - 10 of 19 books)
  • Crocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1)
  • The Curse of the Pharaohs (Amelia Peabody, #2)
  • The Mummy Case (Amelia Peabody, #3)
  • Lion in the Valley  (Amelia Peabody, #4)
  • The Deeds of the Disturber (Amelia Peabody, #5)
  • The Snake, the Crocodile and the Dog (Amelia Peabody, #7)
  • The Hippopotamus Pool (Amelia Peabody, #8)
  • Seeing a Large Cat (Amelia Peabody, #9)
  • The Ape Who Guards the Balance (Amelia Peabody, #10)
  • The Falcon at the Portal (Amelia Peabody, #11)

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