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Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18)

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  4,524 ratings  ·  235 reviews

Convinced that the tomb of the little-known king Tutankhamon lies somewhere in the Valley of the Kings, eminent Egyptologist Radcliffe Emerson and his intrepid wife, Amelia Peabody, seem to have hit a wall. Having been banned forever from the East Valley, Emerson, against Amelia's advice, has tried desperately to persuade Lord Carnarvon and Howard Carter to relinquish thei

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Kindle Edition, 540 pages
Published (first published 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Angela
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cathe Timmons
Amelia Peabody is my hero. I have read everything Elizabeth Peters has written. Several times. I LOVE the Emersons, and when I manage to remember that they are not real people, I always regret the fact.

BUT... I found this book dreary and depressing. The family seems to be drifting apart (the demise of the extended family) and everyone is very focused on their own individual "needs" so they can be fulfilled. I reread it twice, hoping I would like it better, but I just never did. The author manage
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Theresa
This is the 18th in the Amelia Peabody series by Peters, and I must admit I have read all of them. This is the first one I have listened to, and perhaps that is the reason for my lower rating. The series is about an English archaeologist and Egyptologist, Amelia Peabody, and her adventures in Egypt along with her husband who is also an archaeologist. A continuing character is their precocious son, Ramses, who read heiroglyphics before he read English. There is no great, or even small literary va ...more
Suzanne
I so disliked the previous installment in the Peabody-Emerson chronicles that I waited 4 years to read this one. While it is a measurable improvement on that one -- Nefret is no longer a hormone-crazed neurotic and the children are no longer monsters that only a doting grandmother could love -- the worlk is curiously subdued, with a regrettable absence of action and danger. Personalities seem muted; Amelia restrains Emerson far too often. Not a single "refreshing discussion;" not a single shirt ...more
Chris
Amelia and the rest of the sprawling Peabody-Emerson clan are back for yet another adventure featuring ... well, as Abdullah would have put it, "Every year, another dead body."

It's the fall of 1922 in Luxor, Egypt, and Howard Carter is digging one last season in the Valley of the Kings in the hopes of finding anything buried under the sands before his benefactor, Lord Canarvon, pulls the funding away after several fruitless years. Amelia's archaeologist husband, Radcliffe Emerson, is fairly cert
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Trina Morgan
I love historical fiction, and I love series fiction. Ms. Peters (or Mertz, or Michaels) has been an inspiration to me for over a quarter-century.

When I was a very young mother, and had all the time in the world for reading and writing, Ms. Peters' books stimulated my intellect and aroused my imagination. I had no college, and through Vicky Bliss and Amelia Peabody I was inspired to learn who John Donne and Howard Carter were, to read Shakespeare and listen to Handel, and to reach for independen
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Diane
This is the first Elizabeth Peters book I have ever read and I liked it. The characters all were well developed and Amelia Peabody was a force of nature. She holds the reigns over everyone but not obnoxiously; she does with a quiet, or maybe not so quiet but strong will.

I was a little disappointed that the mystery was not more about the tomb but that being said it was a really good, cozy, mystery. I don't usually read cozy type mysteries but I plan to look into more of this series.
Don P
Wow, my journey with the Peabody-Emerson clan is finally at an end. And what a wonderful, fun, fulfilling journey it was. I am dearly going to miss the characters from the smug and self-confident Peabody to the cursing and bombastic Emerson, and from the beautiful and clever Nefret to the stoic and brilliant Ramses. I loved the final book because it wrapped up many of the loose plot threads while still maintaining the warm tone and swift pace of the rest of the series. But it is nonetheless a bi ...more
Jen
Sigh. There used to be a time when I stayed up late to finish an Amelia Peabody book. This one sat on my nightstand while I did a crossword puzzle or read another book instead of continuing this one. the series peaked in the middle, and these latter books are a disappointment. I'll read #19 to finish the series, but I don't have much hope for loving it.
Toni
It was over 20 years ago that I read the first book in the Amelia Peabody Mystery series. This is the 18th in the series, and I've read them all--and wished all of them were longer. What better recommendation can I give?
LemonLinda
I do like a good Amelia Peabody mystery uncovering some wonderful antiquities in Egypt; however, this one did not have the same punch as the others I have read. I am not sure if it was because this one uncovered King Tut's tomb so it had to include the real life Egyptologists that did make the discovery so Amelia and Emerson were introduced on the fringes of the discovery or if was the separate plots outside of the discovery that were a bit far fetched. Amelia is always a fun character and I wil ...more
Alison Stuart
So this is farewell to the Emersons. Chronologically this is the final book in the Peabody series and a fitting end. History tells us every detail around the discovery of the Tomb of Tutankhamen... and it wasn't the Emerson family, but the discovery of this fabulous tomb had to mark the end of the Emerson saga. It's certainly not one of Peters' best. The mystery is ho hum and there is a lot of questionable kidnapping on the part of Amelia - if I was Margaret I would not be nearly so forgiving! B ...more
Gillian
This was a great audiobook to spend time with over the past few days. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, specifically because I am a little more familiar with the archeological discoveries that were taking place during this time. Because of the familiarity of the find and the historical period that it was in, I was especially impressed with how the story of the Emerson family wove in and around the happenings of the time. I was intrigued and involved during the entire book and I'm getting sadder an ...more
Lisa
The Tomb Of The Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18), by Elizabeth Peters
(rounding up to 4, with a for the whole series)

Synopsis: Banned forever from the eastern end of the Valley of the Kings, eminent Egyptologist Radcliffe Emerson's desperate attempt to regain digging rights backfires—and his dream of unearthing the tomb of the little-known king Tutankhamon is dashed. Now Emerson, his archaeologist wife, Amelia Peabody, and their family must watch from the sidelines as Lord Carnarvon and Howard
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Tracy
Elizabeth Peters is back! I love the whole huge family and endless list of characters! This book is meant to be the unfinished and unofficial end to the Amelia Peabody series. Amelia uses one of her famous lists to check off all of the loose plot elements that have been hanging out for several books now. I LOVED it, and especially appreciated all of those little surprises that make it a true Elizabeth Peters success.

I’ve been reading these books for so long that I decided it was time to settle s
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Colleen
This Amelia Peabody novel revolves around the most famous archaeological discovery in history, the discovery of Tutankhamun tomb. While most people at least have some knowledge about the discovery of the tomb, the way that Peters wove her fictional characters into the actual historical events was well done. I hadn't expected for her to make Carter out as almost a villain in this novel, but as the afterward point out that also stayed in line with the historical events. Overall, from the archaeolo ...more
Emily
The last of the books (chronologically speaking) about the Emersons and their extended family. I wanted to like it more than I did. The story was a bit weak. The events occur around the discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun. However, because in historical reality, there are no Emersons to be involved, the writer had to find a way of letting them be there but not be there. It was plausible but not as interesting. The side story about Middle Eastern politics lacked pace.

Those were the cons. The po
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Zdenka
I have enjoyed the series immensely, I have loved the first 8-9 books and kept reading the others just to spend more time in the company of the characters I have learned to care for, even if they behaved oddly and curiously at times (Nefret, Ramses, Emerson, even Amelia). The final book of the series - and the discovery of Tuthankhamon's tomb - was actually quite dissapointing, but I guess that the fault is mine: I expected too much of a closure.

Just to highlight a few of the weakest points:
-
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Angela Mortimer
I needed a easy read for the beach, couldn't get my kindle sandblasted- so I picked this up at a charity shop my friend volunteers at. I got to page 8 and stopped, unable to carry on. Who wrote this, Miss Daphne Tittlemouse from Hove? No, an eminent Egyptologist from Chicago, who has written a huge list of similar books . Ah, a convoluted case of writing what you know and also what you don't. I couldn't possibly write in the peculiar English idiom of another country - it just isn't cricket and a ...more
Kristen
I love the Emerson family, so I enjoyed this 17th book in the series about them.

All the things I love about this series are here: the trouble the family cannot seem to avoid, even when they try; the hilarious verbal sparring between Emerson and Amelia; the wonderful relationship between Ramses and Nefret; the bond of friendship between David and Ramses; and most of all the eclectic, unique and wonderful extended cast of characters that Elizabeth Peters has created. The entertainment value of th
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Nick
I wish we could give half stars, because this deserves a 2.5 rather than a 2.

While my problem might have been reading this book first, and not any of the other series, I felt it was slow. Not much happened until the very end of the book, and that felt rushed and unexplained. There were so many characters, I ended up giving up trying to keep track of them. (But, if you've read the previous books, that might have made it easier to keep up with all of them.) I felt like a lot more could have been
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Smaileh
Oh, I do love the Amelia Peabody mysteries! In the volume, we finally witness the opening of King Tut's tomb--something that we have been anticipating ever since Howard Carter showed up as a character in the series. Of course, we've also known that Emerson cannot be directly involved in the exploration of the tomb; he is forced to watch from the sidelines because he has (yet again) offended the powers that be.

But of course there's plenty to keep the Emerson clan busy. Besides their own excavatio
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Terri
I'm a huge Amelia Peabody fan and I've been savoring these books over many years, drawing them out and making them last. I was very excited to read this one and discover how Amelia's "journals" ended, but this book was a huge disappointment. There was some of the typical humor, but not enough. The main adventure was boring in the extreme and except for one very short interval, I never felt any excitement. King Tut's tomb is discovered, but they don't have any direct connection to it except for t ...more
Sarah Sammis
Tomb of the Golden Bird piqued my interest more than any of the recent Amelia Peabody books have because it takes place during the first season after the discovery of Tutankhamen's tomb. It's a time in history that I've done a fair amount of personal research so I'm familiar with the events and the people involved. When the scenes in this novel focused on Carter, Carnarvon and the tomb, I was riveted. Elizabeth Peters (Barbara Mertz) is an Egyptologist by trade when she's not writing mystery nov ...more
Julia
I went to re-read this after reading Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle about the real Carnarvon family. Lord Carnarvon was a British aristocrat and amateur Egyptologist who sponsored Howard Carter's excavations, leading to the discovery of King Tut's tomb.

Tomb of the Golden Bird is part of a series of mysteries whose main characters, the Emerson family, are English archeologists excavating in Egypt. The book combines their fictional story with the actual
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Jim LaSalle
Sep 10, 2007 Jim LaSalle rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: yes
I bought "Tomb of the Golden Bird" thinking it was a kind of Indiana Jones spinoff. Elizabeth Peters has created a series of novels developed around a reoccurring cast of characters. I'm not sure where "Tomb of the Golden Bird" fits in the series, but there are enough characters wandering in/out of the chapters that Ms. Peters felt it necessary (and she was correct) to include a "List of Characters" at the beginning of the book.

"Tomb of the Golder Bird" is a mild action story based around a woma
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Erin
I was very excited to finally get to 1922 and King Tut's Tomb discovery as I was interested in how the Emersons were going to play a role in actual history with Howard Carter. The one thing I wish I knew going into this book was that it is the last one. I was not aware that the actual last book written takes place 12 years earlier and was devastated when I reached the end and realized I was also at the end of the series chronologically. It was a fine ending, but one must prepare oneself to end s ...more
Andrew Cormier
This is the only book I have ever put down once I started it. No matter how bad a book is, I always make a point to finish it. This, however, was dreadful. Around 40-50 pages into it I decided it was awful and tossed it. I didn't care for the character - they seemed cheesy and artificial. Also, the writing style wasn't very good, and the plot was dull. I feel like Elizabeth Peters just churned this out as her publisher gave her a deadline and she put very little thought into it.

Melliemom
Probably the more mellow-er of all the books in this series so far. There didn't seem to be the intensity of emotion or action in this book. If there was, it was glazed over.

I'm glad to see characters started to settle in and enjoy reading about the "kiddies" growing up.

The author's approach to King Tut's tomb and Howard Carter were sad but understandable. You have to keep something real, well, real. I got to see the King Tut collection when I was in 6th grade, when it was in San Francisco. The
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Karen
What a hoot to re-imagine the discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb with the Emerson family involved! The entire series has been wonderful - a committed, loving, intelligent family, a story arc that includes the reformation (or transformation) of some very unsavory characters and plots that often keep you guessing to the very end. How appropriate to end the Emerson's time in Egypt with King Tut. I can't recommend this book or the series too highly.
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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 Last Camel Died at Noon (Amelia Peabody, #6)
  • 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)
Crocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1) The Curse of the Pharaohs (Amelia Peabody, #2) The Last Camel Died at Noon (Amelia Peabody, #6) Lion in the Valley  (Amelia Peabody, #4) The Mummy Case (Amelia Peabody, #3)

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“Have you caught cold?'
'It would appear so.'
'You could give it to Margaret,' Ramses suggested.
His uncle turned the tinted spectacles toward him and then, unexpectedly, bust into laughter. 'What a charming idea. Will you aid and abet me when I catch her in a close embrace and breathe heavily on her?”
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