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The Curse of the Pharaohs (Amelia Peabody #2)

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  10,667 ratings  ·  609 reviews
One of the best-loved of mystery writers weaves another tale of intrigue featuring Amelia Peabody and Radcliffe of Crocodile on the Sandbank. This time the willful and witty duo must catch a murderer at an excavation of an ancient Egyptian tomb.
ebook, 0 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by Mysterious Press (first published 1981)
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On this listen of this old favourite I was truly appreciative of Peters' skill as an author. The book is told as if it were Amelia Peabody's journal, but still Peters manages very cleverly to give us several views of all the wild twists and turns in the story. We aren't limited to Amelia's viewpoint because although she is a keen observer she isn't very self aware, and though she is very intelligent she often draws the wrong conclusions. It not only makes for an interesting puzzle it makes for s ...more
Feb 24, 2010 Julianna rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Cozy Mystery/Adventure Stories in Exotic Settings or Smart Plucky Heroines
Recommended to Julianna by: Karen Hutchins
Reviewed for THC Reviews
The Curse of the Pharaohs was another fun installment in the Amelia Peabody mystery/adventure series. The story begins with Amelia and Radcliffe Emerson enjoying the bliss of married life back in England, but their seemingly idyllic existence isn't exactly placid thanks to an incredibly precocious four-year-old running amok. At the same time, life holds no real challenge for Emerson who is now a professor of archeology at the university and Amelia who has been reduced to
Imagine, if you will, that Lady Catherine de Bourgh from Pride and Prejudice is reincarnated towards the middle of the nineteenth century as a woman called Amelia Peabody. She develops an interest in archaeology, and marries an Egyptologist who is supposed, I think, to be stirringly alpha male but who is in fact emotionally and physically abusive. She delights in establishing how intelligent and feisty she is by denigrating other women, and spawns an obnoxiously precocious offspring who has a cu ...more
Lisa Kay
Luxor Temple, Egypt (Luxor was the ancient city of Thebes).




★★★☆☆ (This is a review of the audiobook.) This one didn’t do it for me. Loved the first one in the series (which I both read and listened to), also narrated by Barbara Rosenblat. However, this one put me to sleep repeatedly - literally! I had to keep starting over and over again. I don’t think it was the narration as much as the storyline. It just didn’t grab me like the first one did. Ms. Rosenblat does a nice job on the various accen
Barbara ★
New parents Amelia Peabody and Radcliffe Emerson are jonesing to get back to Egypt after being away four years raising Ramses. Even knowing of the deadly curse, they jump at the chance to return when asked by Lady Baskerville whose husband has just been killed after opening a newly discovered tomb. Neither Amelia nor Emerson believe in the supernatural so the various happenings and the mysterious murders, don't scare them off as intended. This is another tale of murder and mayhem in the Valley o ...more
Where to begin? This is the 2nd book in a series of 19 by Elizabeth Peters. It revolves around Amelia Peabody and her husband, Radcliffe Emerson, who are both Egyptologists. I listened to the audio book and the narrator, Barbara Rosenblat, is first rate. I think she does all 19 audio books and I plan to make my way through all of them. Elizabeth Peters, pen name of Barbara Mertz, was, in fact, an Egyptologist with a Ph.D from the University of Chicago...about 30 minutes away from where I live. I ...more
Amelia Peabody Emerson continues to be a woman to be reckoned with and a woman that a mystery always follows. I consider her a younger, even more British version of Miss Marple with a delightfully British "his bark is worse than his bite" husband who is crazy about her and their young son, Ramses who writes notes to his parents in hieroglyphics. A wonderful series for anyone looking for a bit of 1920s Egypt and a good mystery
Very disappointing. After "Crocodile on the Sandbank" I thought I'd found an enjoyable murder mystery series, but the characters have developed most unsatisfactorily. So far it's cliched, contrived, and overwritten.

Preliminary, one-third in:

We have the stereotypical redheaded freckled Irishman who says, "Sure and I wouldn't" and "Top of the mornin'." I'm still waiting for "Faith and begorrah!"

Then there's the American with the the "holy shucks" and "goldurned" and "little lady."

Emerson, with his
Mike (the Paladin)
I listened to several of these books back when I was driving miles and miles daily (radio can get old after a while). My wife always loved them, even before she came to need the audio versions of books. So whenever she finished a book, or while she was listening to another book, I'd take these to work with me and listen.

As I've mentioned before, these are well written...or maybe I should say "well crafted" mysteries. The characters stay true to form and in most cases "act like themselves". The s
Awww, baby Ramses! And this is also one of those infuriating books with a first-person Victorian female narrator, which means every time Amelia and Emerson get up close and personal, we get asterisks in place of actual description. Bother. :)

I thoroughly enjoyed myself while reading this. The dialogue in Elizabeth Peters' books is sometimes rather stilted, especially when she's writing Americans (this particular specimen was given to saying things like "goldurnit!") or anyone who isn't British a
Jan 22, 2009 Megan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Agatha Christie fans
Shelves: mystery
I think I've found my new favorite series. I loved this book! So much fun to read, especially with Amelia's first-person narrative, which was straightforward and witty. The characters were great too. They seemed to come straight out of an Agatha Christie novel --- nobility in disguise, poor young lovers, the social climber, the annoying American. You see what I mean? The only flaw I could see is that Peters pulled a lot of her ideas from her first book. I hope in future books she comes up with s ...more
A mystery set in the timeless antiquity that is Egypt, a mysterious tomb discovered,and a heroine who is smart. witty, and knows her archeology; these are the ingredients that make The Curse of the Pharaohs fun to read.
Amelia Peabody and her husband Emerson, who is a noted archeologist himself. get asked to go to Egypt by the wife of another archeologist who has died while excavating a tomb. The locals believe it is a curse of the pharaoh that is responsible but of course Amelia believes noth
I enjoyed the 1920's Egyptian setting and the archeology information in this light cosy. I liked the main character Amelia, but I found the banter between her and her husband overdone. I realize that the antiquated setting may have something to do with the way it is to be perceived, but I thought the husband Emerson came off as kind of a blowhard jerk at times. Some of the supporting characters were caricatures, like the young girl Mary's mother. Speaking of Mary, the subplot about her suitors a ...more
In the first book of this series, Amelia Peabody was an amusingly practical and unemotional woman, far ahead of her times (the late 1800s). She had a sort of Tracy-and-Hepburn back and forth bantering relationship with a male Egyptologist, and you just knew they were going to fall in love. They did, and got married. This book picks up a bit later, when Amelia and Emerson have a small child and are living in England, waiting until said small child is old enough to take with them on excavations in ...more
This is the second Amelia Peabody adventure/mystery, and I enjoyed this story, and Amelia, even more than the first.

The Curse of the Pharaohs takes place five years after the first one. Amelia and Emerson are married, and have a young, precocious yet highly entertaining son, Walter Junior, nicknamed 'Ramses'. Ramses has rather curtailed Amelia and Emerson's archaeological adventures and so the book opens with the Emersons living a rather staid life, vegetating in Kent, where Emerson has made a s
Khanh (Clowns, Nightmares, and Bunnies)
This book picks up a few years after the first; by now, Amelia and her husband have been married for several years and have a young child. Their mutual love for their son has prevented them from returning to Egypt for further excavations, since they are concerned about his health. Ultimately, a young widow of a fellow explorer offers them a chance they cannot resist, and Amelia and Emerson find themselves back in Egypt.

I enjoyed the first book in the series, but if the successive books in this s
Jun 13, 2010 Becky rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Historical Fiction fans, feminists, Egyptology buffs
Recommended to Becky by: Allison (The Allure of Books)
I'm really kind of torn on what to rate this one... On the one hand, it's Amelia and Emerson, and they are brilliant characters, but on the other hand, there was just something about this book that left me a little... wanting.

I really enjoyed the first book in the series, "The Crocodile on the Sandbank", and fell in love with both Amelia and Emerson in that book. Amelia was so smart, and strong and sure of herself, and her biting wit and force of will made her a creature to be reckoned with. Em
1981, #2 Amelia Peabody, Egypt 1892-1893; satirical historical thriller.

Another lovely visit with Amelia and Emerson, at home in England and at work in Egypt 1892-1893. The Emersons become enmeshed in the weird happenings surrounding a wealthy family's archeological dig that holds a curse, but might also hold a treasure trove. As the bodies mount up, so do the suspects, as Amelia and Emerson each tries to out-do the other in solving the mysteries. A beautifully old-fashioned thriller, filled wit
This is the second in the Amelia Peabody series. In this one Amelia and Emerson have settled in their new home in England with their little terror son Ramses. Amelia is not very motherly at all so it is funny seeing her interact with the very precocious Ramses. After a few months of settlement Emerson and Amelia both begin to get the itch to go back to Egypt for another excavation except with Ramses to consider future excavations are at a halt. That is until they get an offer they can’t refuse f ...more
Rebecca Huston
Picks up about five years after the events of The Crocodile on the Sandbank. Amelia and Emerson are in England, having married and had a son, nicknamed Ramses. But the death of an amateur archaeologist in Egypt draw them back to the Nile (Ramses, alas, is too young to go), and not only are there some colourful characters to deal with on the expedition, but a curse seems to be hell-bent on ruining them. Being of scientific mind and constitutions, both Amelia and Emerson feel that the curse is rea ...more
Elizabeth (Miss Eliza)
Five years have passed since Emerson and Amelia were wed. Five years away from Egypt living dutifully in Kent raising their son Ramses. Five years amid the damp and the cold and the rain. It's not that they don't love their son's just that he can't really make up for the Egyptian sunrise or the thrill of a freshly unearthed mummy. For weeks the tabloids have been filled with the story of Lord Baskerville who died mysteriously while unearthing a new tomb in the Valley of the Kings, le ...more
This is the second book in Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series. I read the first one, Crocodile on the Sandbank, two years ago in January 2012 and enjoyed it, so I'm not sure why it has has taken me so long to get round to reading this one.

The Curse of the Pharaohs is set in the late Victorian period and begins five years after the previous book ended. Amelia is happily married to the archaeologist Radcliffe Emerson and they now have a young son, Ramses. Despite longing to return to their wo
BJ Rose
Oct 04, 2009 BJ Rose rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: cozy-mystery readers
This book was fun, but not as compelling/riveting a read as Crocodile on the Sandbank. The first part was cute, as Amelia discovers what her readers already knew: she is not a happy stay-at-home mom. So off to Egypt they go. I enjoyed the twists and turns that developed in the story, but felt no suspense in the murder mystery - I was pretty sure from the beginning whodunnit and I was right, but I loved the reasoning processes used by both Amelia and Emerson. But Amelia's overbearing arrogance wa ...more
The Curse of the Pharaohs is a fast, fun, and humorous second outing with Amelia and her husband Emerson. The first half isn't quite as good as the second, but it quickly picks up and is enjoyable until the end. Amelia's outlook is a joy to read and I love how Elizabeth Peters writes her, which to me, seems like it would be very hard to do in a first person narrative (particularly with a character like Amelia Peabody Emerson!). There are some truly hilarious lines and passages, especially betwe ...more
Ryan Patrick
Elizabeth Peters is a far better writer in her Amelia Peabody series than in her other novels I have read. Perhaps taking on the first-person persona of Amelia helps her write better. I suspect that Amelia has a lot of Elizabeth Peters in her, which is fine - Amelia is rather fun, although plagued with the curse of historical fictional heroines everywhere, which is that she is saddled with a too-modern sense of feminism to be quite believable in the context. She is perhaps not as bad as others I ...more
Ruby Rose Scarlett
Last book of 2013. That was a really good read with plenty of humour (especially sexual banter between the two spouses), adventure and and a great feminist-friendly heroine. Very quotable too. The mystery's a bit thin, meaning that I would have liked more clues and a more thorough investigation before the big reveal and some things were utterly ludicrous - Ramses, the three-year-old prodigy is one of them - but it was very entertaining and I don't know why I waited this long to read this since I ...more
I love the narrator, I love how you don't get the solution until everyone does and I especially love how you see the narrator sometimes fake it, like "'yes, of course I know what you're planning.' I didn't.".
Lynne Tull
I am getting into this series. Before I know it I will be speaking Egyptology. I have really not been interested in anything Egyptian. Luckily, it's not a requirement for reading this series. Egypt doesn't get in the way of the mystery to be solved. I really like the H/H and their cast of characters. Also...glad that Elizabeth Peters found her niche. Her other series do not even compare to this one. Really not a spoiler, but as a GR friend will not believe what Amelia and Emerson ...more
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
I really enjoyed Crocodile on the Sandbank in a suspend-disbelief sort of way; even though it was pretty silly and the plot was transparent, it was a fun read. But this one--oy. Ms Peters was working a bit too hard to be amusing, and ended up being annoying.
1. The pweshuss ickle fwee year old who can't speak clearly and yet can discuss anthropology, forensic science, and write hieroglyphics with pen and ink.
2. His parents "just adore" him and yet can't wait to foist him off on their un-thrilled
These books are so much fun! I'm really enjoying them (and for "enjoying," read "devouring"). Some of my favorite aspects of this mystery: a harum scarum toddler whom his parents adore but also feel a tad relieved to leave to go to Egypt and do their work; a stray cat who becomes a family member (Bastet); a last-minute fake-out about who the murderer is (but one done very subtly and fairly, so that I did not think it was a cheat); lots of euphemistic circumlocutions when our heroine and her husb ...more
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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...
Crocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1) The Last Camel Died at Noon (Amelia Peabody, #6) Lion in the Valley  (Amelia Peabody, #4) The Mummy Case (Amelia Peabody, #3) The Deeds of the Disturber (Amelia Peabody, #5)

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