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Nefertiti: Unlocking the Mystery Surrounding Egypt's Most Famous and Beautiful Queen
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Nefertiti: Unlocking the Mystery Surrounding Egypt's Most Famous and Beautiful Queen

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  404 Ratings  ·  28 Reviews
For over a decade, Nefertiti, wife of the heretic king Akhenaten, was the most influential woman in the Bronze Age world: a beautiful queen blessed by the sun god, adored by her family, and worshipped by her people.

Her image and her name were celebrated throughout Egypt and her future seemed golden. Suddenly Nefertiti disappeared from the royal family, vanishing so complet
Paperback, 256 pages
Published August 26th 2005 by Penguin Books (first published 1998)
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Aug 18, 2015 Nicole rated it liked it
I read this after reading Joyce's book on Hatshepsut, which I loved and enjoyed. I did find this book very interesting however I found that there wasnt as much about Nefertiti as I was expecting or would have liked. I understand that there is so much unknown about Nefertiti but I would have loved it if the book focused more on her and how she fit into the Amarna Period.
The bust of Nefertiti that is housed in Berlin’s museum is one of the most famous icons in popular culture. Because of her beauty, she has become the symbol of Ancient Egypt. Her face is on key-rings, iphone cases, post-cards, t-shirts, etc. Aside from her image, who was the mysterious Nefertiti? How much power and influence did she actually have? What were her accomplishments besides being merely beautiful? Joyce Tyldesley’s biography seeks to answer these questions.

There are few known details
Dec 29, 2014 Sofia rated it liked it
Thoughtful and well researched, but we just don't know much of anything about Nefertiti, so the book ends up speculating a lot about Herself and talking a lot more about the previous ruler, Nefertiti's husband, and then her husband's successor.
Mar 27, 2008 Laura rated it it was ok
Blah. I love Egypt, and I love history. But this book nearly bored me to death.
Jan 15, 2017 Ron rated it liked it
I have long avoided the study of ancient Egypt because it has always seemed to stand outside the history of the rest of the world, with historians hewing to their dynastic timelines rather than the timeline of history. Their culture is a vast leap forward from the earliest cultures that came prior, with the written details of Sumeria, for example, being more about commerce than anything. The leap forward to an abstract and pictorial written language that seems to create more confusion for the in ...more
Kathleen Mce
This book was dry as dust. While other reviewers weren't happy about the fact that it seemed to be more about Akhenaten, that didn't bother me, as it was within the context of her life (or what we know about her life). I do realise it was written by an academic and was a scholarly treatise, but still, it was insanely boring.

I started another one about her immediately after and it's already significantly more interesting.
Aug 07, 2012 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nefertiti fans.
As someone who admires and is fascinated by Nefertiti, but loathes attempts to turn Nefertiti into some kind of wonder woman, I find Joyce Tyldesley's book an excellent volume on one of Egypt's most famous and iconic queens. Tyldesley presents Nefertiti as a strong, powerful queen but her portrait relies firmly on the evidence and the most likely scenarios developed from this evidence.

For instance, Tyldesley considers the proposition that Nefertiti became the pharaoh Smenkhkara, but ultimately d
Mar 23, 2011 Maja rated it really liked it
A hightly interesting books that tries to answer some of the many questions about the world-famous Nefertiti. Who was she? What was her role in her time? And where did she suddenly go? None of these questions have just one clear answer. But the author, Joyce Tyldesley, tries to rule out some theories and stress the liability of others. This book shows that, sadly, there's very little that we in fact do know about Ancient Egypt. Archeological findings don't have just one interpretation. It remain ...more
Jun 13, 2014 Aleksandra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Przystępna, prosto napisana biografia, dobrze nadająca się na pierwszą lekturę na temat Echnatona, jego małżonki i programu religijnej reformy. Autorka raczej streszcza stanowiska niż proponuje własne, mniej znane zjawiska z obrębu egipskiej kultury objaśnia w przystępny (nawet jeśli czasem uproszczony) sposób, a o dziejach swojej bohaterki i jej rodziny opowiada dostatecznie wciągająco, żeby zaintrygować czytelnika; książka jest przyjemna w lekturze, a jednocześnie daje zarys biografii królowej ...more
Ebba Schmidt
Jun 28, 2015 Ebba Schmidt rated it really liked it
Books about Egypt always contain a lot of guesswork because while the amount of information gleaned from burial sites etc is astonishing after such a long time,there is still so much unknown. This book is well written but can't quite draw Nefertiti out of obscurity - I felt it was really more about Akhenaten and his short-lived regime, with Nefertiti a shadowy side figure. Nonetheless a very good read.
Mar 10, 2013 Rozonda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very, very interesting book which shows the factual documents and works of art we have about Nefertiti and her time, and shows in fact how little we know; it doesn't give a definitive answer to the many enigmas surrounding the Queen and her husband but gives a good deal of food for thought, posing so many questions. An excellent work of investigation bt Tyldesley, didactic and easy to read, a pleasure for Ancient Egypt lovers. ...more
₵oincidental   Ðandy
Jan 29, 2014 ₵oincidental Ðandy rated it really liked it
A well-researched book - Ms. Tyldesley knows her Egyptian history; she is particularly knowledgeable about the (controversial) Amarna period. She brings Nefertiti & Akhenaten (including their immediate & extended family members as well as other peripheral characters) to life. A good & enjoyable book.
Sheela Rahman
Jul 03, 2016 Sheela Rahman rated it it was ok
After five chapters of the background leading to the introduction of Nefertiti in Chapter 6, I lost interest and was left saddened at the fate of the children (parentage questionable). Theories on her 'disappearance' were enlightening. It's gives interesting historical details on the location and use of artefacts at museums all over the world.
Aug 11, 2011 Barbara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: archaeology, egypt
Interesting, although the title is badly chosen. It is more abbout her husband and the city he founded than about Nefertiti. Also it is more an interpretation of certain reliefs and depictions which are sometimes talked about in detail but not shown than about her life.
Apr 17, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it
Very good and interesting, there is so much that is vague and unknowable about Nefertiti and the arising of Aten, its a difficult topic to write about, yet she managed so well to write it out, and explain in detail the number of possibilities, very well done.
Rebecca Huston
Sep 01, 2010 Rebecca Huston rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, egypt
A rather so-so book about Nefertiti that is more conjecture rather than fact. Still, alright to read, just not great.

For the complete review, please go here:
Feb 22, 2014 Elaine rated it it was ok
I don't have much to say about this book. While it was very interesting and informative, it was more about Akhenaten than Nefertiti which I didn't much care for because I wanted to read about Nefertiti. I think only two whole chapters were devoted to her out of the whole book.
Aug 24, 2009 Rach rated it liked it
A good overview and analysis of Nefertiti and the Amarna period. It was a bit dry, but at least it was concise. It was a good companion to the fictional novel about Nefertiti and her family that I read previously.
Aug 07, 2013 Sandy rated it liked it
This was the interesting look Queen Nefertiti and although we don't really know what happened to her the book does offer insights into what was going on during this period in Egyptian history.
Angela Pezel
I liked this book. I think this is older than some of the recent research that has come to light right regarding Akhenaten and his family in general. I think I might read more on this subject matter.
Fascinating glimpse into the life of a royal who we will never know as much about as we wish we could…
Jan 02, 2017 Elli rated it really liked it
It doesn't pay to neglect history. Nefertiti continues to intrigue - what exactly happened to her is still up in the air.
Mar 02, 2012 Amber rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished
Very interesting information but it's difficult to keep all of the names straight! Especially since they are long and very unfamiliar to my ears.
Unnati Rennie
Unnati Rennie rated it really liked it
Feb 24, 2013
Jana rated it it was amazing
Feb 25, 2013
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Sep 21, 2014
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Sep 22, 2012
Patricia Dihel
Patricia Dihel rated it it was amazing
Aug 25, 2015
Dunx rated it really liked it
Apr 07, 2015
Kailee Hughes
Kailee Hughes rated it it was amazing
Jul 08, 2011
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Joyce Tyldesley is a British archaeologist and Egyptologist, academic, writer and broadcaster.

Tyldesley was born in Bolton, Lancashire and attended Bolton School. In 1981, she earned a first-class honours degree in archaeology from Liverpool University, and a doctorate in Prehistoric Archaeology from Oxford in 1986. She is a Teaching Fellow at Manchester University where she is tutor and course or
More about Joyce A. Tyldesley...

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