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The Ptolemies

3.62  ·  Rating Details  ·  81 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
From a refreshingly antic new voice in historical fiction, this epically entertaining, irresistibly madcap novel re-creates an ancient family whose obsessions and dysfunctions would change the world, for better or worse.

They were the last pharaohs to rule Egypt. Ptolemy Soter (putative half-brother of Alexander the Great–his mother may have been raped by Alexander’s father
Paperback, 496 pages
Published June 14th 2005 by Vintage (first published May 11th 2004)
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Rob Atkinson
Sep 27, 2014 Rob Atkinson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely engrossing historical fiction on the order of Robert Graves's "I, Claudius", "The Ptolemies" (aka "House Of The Eagle") is the lurid story of the founding of Egypt's Ptolemaic dynasty after the death of Alexander the Great. Founder Ptolemy Soter was one of Alexander's generals, and thereby became one of a number of his heirs when the Macedonian conqueror of most of the known world died at age 34, far from home. It then fell to Ptolemy to govern the rich province of Egypt, ruling brief ...more
Apr 20, 2014 Kayla rated it really liked it
The Ptolemies is a historical reconstruction by Duncan Sprott about the first Greek family to rule Egypt after Alexander the Great. Ptolemy became of the men to rule Alexander's kingdom after he died for his crazy brother. This is the story of the journey to becoming a king and the trouble that can cause for a family. The thought of ruling drove Ptolemy's family crazy and brought all of them unlucky. The story is told by the god Thoth the god of knowing all things. He tells the story from all si ...more
Dec 11, 2014 Jack rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a first. I have never read a book written by an ancient Egyptian God. Thoth was a pretty good author - a little judgmental at times and he certainly didn't hide his dislike of the Greeks. But when you are dealing with what amounts to be one of the world's greatest dysfunctional families, some of his feelings were justified.

This is the story of Ptolemy, General in Alexander's Macedonian army. Upon the death of the Conquerer and the division of the empire, Ptolemy takes Egypt (along with
Feb 04, 2012 Chris rated it did not like it
Eugh, I have just been alarmed to find that this book is still on the bookshelf in the dining room. I thought I had thrown it away. Ah, if only the dead could sue for libel! Or better, come back and give varlets a good beating with the flats of their swords. The great names of Hellenistic Egypt are viewed through a 21st century lense of bilious misanthropy and presented as absolutely devoid of any redeeming features. After reading this book I felt like I had been swimming in cold dishwater. I wi ...more
Feb 05, 2012 Steve marked it as abandoned  ·  review of another edition
Not doing it for me, so I'll give all my attention to other books. It's okay, but I don't like it enough or care enough about it to continue. The unusual narrator voice is fun for a while, but then the novelty wears off. I'm kind of interested in the actual story of the Ptolemies, but I think a good magazine article or non-fiction book chapter might suit me better. I'll look elsewhere for both my history and my fiction.
Mar 25, 2013 Gordon rated it it was ok
Shelves: light-fiction
Good enough to keep me occupied for a long plane trip, but not a keeper. A lot of violence, a touch of humour, somewhat repetitive, interesting enough if you like history but it's a stretch to call this a novel.
Keely Watling
Aug 05, 2011 Keely Watling rated it really liked it
Captivating!! Greek history written so well that it's horrifically compelling!!
Aug 15, 2007 Talya rated it it was amazing
Loved it...a true storyteller!
Apr 27, 2009 Erin rated it liked it
very interesting so far...
Edward Butler
Jul 13, 2010 Edward Butler rated it did not like it
Tossed after 50 pages.
Jan 28, 2013 Dana rated it it was amazing
Loved it!
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Duncan Sprott is the author of The Clopton Hercules and Our Lady of the Potatoes, both historical reconstructions, published in the United Kingdom. He lives in Ireland.
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