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Akhenaten: Egypt's False Prophet
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Akhenaten: Egypt's False Prophet

3.88  ·  Rating Details  ·  186 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
One of the most compelling and controversial figures in history, Akhenaten has captured the imagination like no other Egyptian pharaoh. Much has been written about this strange, persecuted figure whose freakish appearance - elongated and effete - is totally at odds with that of the traditional Egyptian ruler-hero. Scholars and laymen have speculated that he was a eunuch or ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published May 1st 2001 by Thames & Hudson (first published 2001)
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I have mixed feelings about this book. While I thought it was well written for regular people who love to read about Ancient Egypt, it felt a little pushy to me. There were times when I had the feeling that the author wrote the book to push his ideas out into the general public rather than tell the facts as were. Occasionally I felt as if the history that was being revealed was more like setting a plot for storytelling, where some things seemed completely irrelevant to the subject matter, until ...more
May 07, 2012 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those looking for an introduction to Akhenaten and the Amarna period
This review is going to be long and probably has a "my feelings, let me show you them" vibe. Sorry.

The short version is that while an accessible book, this book does have a number of drawbacks. Namely, Reeves presents certain sensationalist theories as conclusive, when they're anything but.

Akhenaten: Egypt's False Prophet is an easy to read book. Reeves writes well for the general public, and the book is beautifully presented with lots of illustrations and photos, though the vast majority are i
Jul 28, 2013 Lydia rated it liked it
I have mixed feelings about this book. First of all, it claims to be a "revolutionary interpretation of a revolutionary king" right on the back cover. But frankly, after having read it, I don't see anything revolutionary about it - any educated person with a basic understanding of ancient Egyptian history knows that Akhenaten's religious revolution was more for political reasons than religious, and knows better than to tout this king as an "early revealer of religious truth" - even in the predom ...more
Jul 14, 2014 Brian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Atenism, the religion founded by the "heretic" pharaoh Akhenaten (Amenophis IV) in the Middle Kingdom (ca. 2030–1640 B.C.), is usually referred to as "the world's first monotheism." Nicholas Reeves, a former curator of the British Museum's Department of Egyptian Antiquities and a prolific author on Egyptology, argues that this isn't really true. Atenism, Reeves claims, wasn't much of a religion at all; it was mostly a cynical power play to reclaim royal prerogatives from an overbearing priestly ...more
Jan 17, 2008 Lanny rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: scholars, egypt buffs, sun-worshippers

This book is pretty much the latest scoop on Akhy, and it does a really good job of describing the human / social construction
of the Amarna style and giving an in depth lead up to Akhenaton, and an equally well-done aftermath including just exactly what we do and don't know about the reign. He leaves open the age-old question about Akhy's physiology (giving allt he various hist. theor.) but thankfully connects it to the recent research which seems fairly conclusive that a mummy found in Tomb 55

Jul 17, 2015 Georgene rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
There has been much discovered about Akhenaten since this book was published in 2001. Nevertheless, for me it filled in a lot of gaps in the history of this particular period.

It read well, so it didn't take a lot of time to read. Lots of great photos with clear explanations attached.

Of course, in times to come, much in this book will be challenged, if not changed. But that's Egyptology for you.
Eugene Naughton
Jan 27, 2014 Eugene Naughton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good, provocative review of the pharaoh's life and accessible for people who are not Egyptologists.
Jun 12, 2008 Jenny rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: egyptology
Who better to chronicle the life of Ancient Egypt's most controversial god-king than Nicholas Reeves, whom I consider a controversial thinker? Although some points in this book are outdated (as is nearly every topic in Egyptology), it should be on anyone's list of books to read, particularly for those who are interested in learning about Akh-en-aten, his family, his life, and his beliefs.
Feb 13, 2009 Kris rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great intro to the world of Akhenaten and the Amarna kings (and queen). It amazes me when the author says that we dont know much about a site, then proceeds to tell about buildings that had existed on the spot before other buildings were built... all 3 thousand years ago! Im apt to believe the Marfans syndrome theory of Akhenaten after reading this one. ...more
Timothy Boyd
Feb 22, 2016 Timothy Boyd rated it liked it
I had hoped this was a book on the king and his rule, maybe even the religious upheaval he caused. Mostly it was an archaeology based history. Not a bad read just not what I was hoping for. Recommended
Feb 21, 2012 Daeron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was OK, and I did enjoy reading everything on Akhenaten. However I do think they went on a little to excessively about the archaeologists. For that reason it only gets a 3/5 by me
I didn't care for this book at all. I think perhaps I am too familiar with Egyptian history and this book barely touched the surface of Akhenaten.
Thomas Walsh
This Pharaoh may have been Moses. He was the first ruler to conceive monotheism.
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Carl Nicholas Reeves (born 28 September 1956) is an English Egyptologist best known for his archaeological work in and writings on the Valley of the Kings. He is currently Sylvan C. Coleman and Pamela Coleman Memorial Fellow for 2010/11 in the Department of Egyptian Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name.
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