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House Of Illusions (Lady of the Reeds #2)

4.08 of 5 stars 4.08  ·  rating details  ·  615 ratings  ·  33 reviews
For many years Thu has lived in exile where she has written down the tragic history of her life as Pharaoh's favourite concubine. Now, a young soldier has read her words and believes in them. When he shows the manuscript to his general, he sets in motion a stirring drama of revenge and punishment, miraculous disclosures and unexpected vindication.
Paperback, 466 pages
Published June 3rd 1997 by Penguin Canada (first published 1996)
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This sequel to House of Dreams, also known as Lady of the Reeds, was actually written as a response to the overwhelming reader popularity of the character of Thu in the previous book. Gedge herself wrote that she had thought Thu’s story finished, but Thu proved so popular with readers that she decided to bring her back. Since in the previous book Thu unhistorically survives, the door was left open for a sequel, and here it is.

Since in real life Ramesses III, Thu and Pentaweres were all actually
I thought that I loved Lady of the Reeds immensely, but then I read this and my love for the characters—and this set of stories as a whole—multiplied. I enjoyed every page and every word, I was reading so eagerly in hopes of Thu finding happiness, and praying that everything worked out in the end. Most would say that the ending is predictable or implausible; I, instead, choose to feel satisfaction rather than complain about the realistic aspect of it all. Unforgettable tale, and already I would ...more
Francoise McKay
Pauline Gedge, as usual, is probably the best writer of "Egyptian Fiction". Her characters and scenes are equisitely detailed, whether she writes in the third or first person. House of Illusions continues the story of Thu, and her son, who were separated under edict of Rameses III. The ending and events, although near the end were rather fantastical and almost predictable. If you have not read Lady of the Reeds, then you probably would not enjoy this book as much, but as sequels go, it is quite ...more
Carrie Slager
Call me cold-hearted, but I actually liked the tragic ending of House of Dreams. It was realistic and stayed true to the less than happy tone of the novel. But I guess Pauline Gedge just couldn’t let it end there and wrote House of Illusions to give Thu her revenge.

There is only one word to describe this sequel: cliché. The plot is more like that of a Hollywood movie and Pauline Gedge had to do some serious fact-changing to write this novel. After all, the real Thu and her grown son (he was not
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I wanted to try one of Godge's Egyptian novels and chose this for the intriguing title. I didn't realize it was a sequel until I started. I liked the book. Although it started strong with the young officer Kamen looking for his true lineage and finding it, it started falling apart. The first person voices of the three different people telling the story--Kamen, the scribe, Kaha, and Thu helped propel the story forward from a different viewpoint each time. There was too much repetition of past eve ...more
An excellent sequel to the first "Lady of the Reeds" by Gedge. Obviously, read the first book in order for this book to make any difference. Quick and interesting, it will occasionally surprise you. It's also nearly impossible to read in multiple sittings--I was nearly unable to drag myself away from it, because when the story is put in motion, it's pretty much a nonstop course of events with little disconnect or break. You'll be holding your water in anticipation for a stopping point or pause t ...more
I enjoyed this book as much as I did "House of Dreams." I saw where one reviewer said he or she (sorry, I cannot remember which) didn't particularly like how the story switched narrators. I really thought about that a lot while I was reading this novel, and I came to the conclusion there really wasn't a way to tell this particular story in first person and have enough to fill a whole novel. Also, I think having the those other perspectives help lend some depth to the story.

I don't think this no
Evocative prose and interesting characters, although you will not like this book if you want your protagonist to be thoroughly likable. Thu is a sympathetic protagonist, but not always likable. She's a schemer.
Fantastic! Just loved it to the very last page! Great and consistent style of narration made this book just one of a kind. Lots of twists and turns to the last moment made it so interesting for me. Whole story was intriguing and totally thought out so nothing was left unanswered, everything had its closure. I loved the ending, I really did. Maybe a good opening for the third book? :)
A follow up to House of Dreams and every bit as good. I thought I had read this some years ago but if I did it was in my Dreams because I simply did not remember it. So I have read it now and sorted out my lists for this year.

Set in Egypt at the time of Ramses it finishes the story of Thu a concubine of the great Ramses accused of trying to poison him. She is banished and made to serve 17 long years of hard labour to the priests. A very good story of retribution and discovery.

Pauline Gedge write
Wonderful historical fiction.
Carrie Kellenberger
This was not one of my favorite Pauline Gedge novels. I loved Thu's story, but I didn't like how it was told from so many different perspectives. I found parts of the story a bit hard to follow because of this. The conclusion really ticked me off when they brought Thu and Hui back together. I didn't feel that it meshed with the rest of the story.
I'd be interested in learning more about Kamen and his betrothed, however. I think that could make for an interesting continuation to this series.
It was a little stale at times but overall pretty decent
The very last chapter knocked my original review down to three stars, but the quality of the writing leading up to that was just at lush and gripping as every other Gedge novel, so I added that star back. This book read as if Gedge had time to really working on the first 3/4 of it, but the very end was a cop out. Still, I don't regret reading it. I'd give it a 3.5.
Katie Tillwick
A thrilling historical novel, the follow up to 'House of Dreams'. The characters in the version were much more likeable, one of the main issues with the first book. Thu redeems herself in this page turning finale. The only downside was a sense of disbelief at the ending.
Vielleicht lag es daran dass ich das Vorgänger-Buch nicht gelesen habe, aber ich fand vieles sehr vorhersehbar. Oft schrie ich dem Helden, Kamen, zu NEIN aber er hörte mich nicht und lief sehenden Auges in sein Unglück.

Naja sei es wie es sei ich habe es mit 142 Seiten bei-seite gelegt. Möge es einen anderen Leser erfreuen...mich nicht.
Love it as much as the first book "House of Dreams". I find it rare that a sequel can ever live up to the first book but this one sure did. I loved the continuation of the story, I wanted to see Thu get her revenge. I think everything in the end fell into place and there were no loose ends that kept me wondering.
I loved this follow up on THU's story. Some people think its not realistic how it ended but I'm tired of very sad endings. I loved it and she left room for a third book if she hasn't already written one.
I discovered Gedge years ago and was enthralled with her Egypt series. The characters were wonderful and I feel I was educated in so much historical knowledge. I plan to re-read in the future.
This title and the preceding one in this series must be some of the best historical novels on Ancient Egypt that I have read. I am definitely looking forward to reading her other novels.
Not quite as good as the House of Reeds, but it is interesting to know 'how the story ends'. She does such a good job of portraying ancient Egypt that it is a pleasure to read.
Ça fait tellement plaisir d'avoir la suite des aventures de Thu. Pour moi, c'est impossible de lire "Le Scorpion du Nil" sans lire sa suite et avoir la fin de l'histoire.
This was great...I read it much quicker than book 1, probably because I was already "invested" in the characters. Although..the ending was a tad predictable.
This book disappointed me. The plot was interesting at first but, It all changed in the middle of the history
Azade jafari
"خانه ارزوها"
اثر پولین گج نویسنده کانادایی داستانی است که در مصر باستان و در زمان فراعنه اتفاق می افتد
Required a total suspension of disbelief. So many coincidences. Ending was too much. And it was boring.
A thrilling and absolutely stunning. Made me reach for another book of this author.
hoping for a small novella with thu and hui... ^_^
Wanda Hilaire
Fab during my Egyptian phase of interest.
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I was born in Auckland, New Zealand, on December 11, 1945, the first of three girls. Six years later my family emigrated to England where my father, an ex-policeman, wanted to study for the Anglican ministry. We lived in an ancient and very dilapidated cottage in the heart of the English Buckinghamshire woodland, and later in a small village in Oxfordshire called Great Haseley. I grew up surrounde ...more
More about Pauline Gedge...

Other Books in the Series

Lady of the Reeds (2 books)
  • Lady of the Reeds (Lady of the Reeds, #1)
Child of the Morning The Eagle and the Raven The Hippopotamus Marsh (Lord of the Two Lands, #1) Lady of the Reeds (Lady of the Reeds, #1) The Oasis (Lords of the Two Lands, #2)

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