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Tomb of the Golden Bird

(Amelia Peabody #18)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  6,339 ratings  ·  344 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 ...more
Hardcover, 317 pages
Published March 28th 2006 by William Morrow
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4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,339 ratings  ·  344 reviews

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Dec 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: peters-elizabeth
A great read! The first part was fun for me since I always enjoy reading about Howard Carter and the discovery of King Tut's Tomb. This part of the book didn't pull me along though and I could put the book down for other things. But the latter part of the book - the usual madcap adventures and mystery were very compelling and I read late into the night.
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Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
In the 18th book of the Amelia Peabody series, we join the archaeological Emerson family in 1922 Egypt for another digging season. Radcliffe Emerson is sure a major find is still waiting to be discovered in the Valley of the Kings. Professor Emerson is trying to dissuade the wealthy Lord Carnavon and his hired archaeologist, Howard Carter, from continuing their work and giving the concession to him. Unfortunately Carter and Carnavon want one last season, in which they will soon discover where Tu ...more
Reading chronologically this is the last book in the series, and I found that quite sad. So it was a bit hard for me to listen to it dispassionately. :) It's a good story that moves well and doesn't throw in every character who ever appeared, which is a relief. I did find myself wishing Peters had played with history and let Emerson or Cyrus find King Tut's tomb. But it wasn't to be and she did manage to have them on site a lot.

Revisiting the series, I find myself a little less enchanted with t
The Emersons are back in Egypt for the archeological season of 1922-1923. They are a bit of a loss, however, as David has decided to stay behind in England with his family and career as an artist/illustrator and all the staff they've ever hired turn out to be murderers or victims of murder. Oh dear! After some mysterious happenings in Cairo, the family quickly retreats to Luxor where they feel safe. Emerson hopes to persuade Lord Carnarvon to cede his concession in the East Valley. The Earl and ...more
Ida Flowers
Aug 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Cathe Timmons
Sep 05, 2008 rated it it was ok
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
Jan 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
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.
Aug 15, 2010 rated it liked it
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
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I’ve read a half dozen of these or more, and found the series a light and campy entertainment. I have always listened to the audiobook version, and narrator Barbara Rosenblatt really made these stories work. In addition, the Victorian feminist voice of the lead character, the interesting locales, and the action made these work for me. With this one, I skipped way ahead in the series. I didn’t find this to be as interesting as the earlier books. There seemed to be less action, the location descri ...more
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
Sep 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
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
Audrey K.
This was the first of the Amelia Peabody adventures that I had read. For me, the book was just OK. Perhaps if the reader is an Amelia Peabody fan (fan status, I presume, obtained by reading earlier Amelia Peabody mysteries), one would find the book more interesting. I made it to page 226, and then decided that I didn't really care what happened to Amelia, and that I would rather read a more compelling story.
Jun 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing
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?
Oct 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Finished a re-read of this in audio. Although not the last written, it wraps up all of the main characters' stories very nicely.
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this series and this was another fun installment. If you haven't read any of this series before, don't start here - go back to the beginning, as there are spoilers for earlier books in the later ones. They really should be read in order. If you've read the earlier books, you probably aren't reading this review, and if you are - why? You love the series, if you've gotten this far, all I can say is that this is a worthy addition.

The whiny, lovesick Ramses books are not my favorite, and than
Kirsty Gray
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Kirsty by: Julia DeBarrioz
I'm so sad to be at the end of this series. (I mean I have the three books set in seasons we didn't see ) but still - it was an amazing ending. (view spoiler)
Kathleen Schilling
Jul 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
I didn't have this on the list of books I had read, but I am pretty sure that I read this a couple of years ago. It is a good installment in the series, but definitely not my favorite. I liked the earlier books best.
Mar 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I like this series a lot. This was a particularly interesting convoluted, in the best way, story.
Jun 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Tutankhamen one, with an intricate plot and so many characters I think even Barbara Rosenblat was getting confused. But - lovely lovely lovely to see old friends in top form.
Sep 16, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a fun change of pace for me. I liked the history blended with the fictional British Egyptologist family. This would fall into my fluff read category, but it was a fluff read with a bit of depth at the same time, if that makes sense.
Jun 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone & everyone
I'm in the process of re-reading the entire Amelia Peabody series again, from start to finish in one go. They are still some of my favorite books. They must be read with tongue firmly inserted in cheek. It also helps to have an interest in and some knowledge of Colonial-era exploration narratives, fiction like that of H. Rider Haggard, Orientalist studies, the competitive acquisitive zeal of western museums at the turn of the century, and the "gentlemen archaeologists" of the 19th century who br ...more
Jul 02, 2017 rated it really liked it

The Emerson family is in Egypt in the early 1920's. The tomb of Tutankhamon has not been discovered yet, but all the signs lead to that discovery being very near. Howard Carter is an acquaintance of Emerson and Amelia, but there has been a falling out. Carter is a person who has become overwhelmed by his own self-importance.
Emerson's heart is broken because he will not be one of the first ones to see all the treasures to be found. Even from a distance, he is keeping w
Jul 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio, upstairs
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
Jul 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
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
Angela Mortimer
Mar 04, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: crime
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
May 19, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: listened-to-it
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
Jim Mann
Jan 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Amelia and Emerson Peabody must stand by and watch as Howard Carter discovers the tomb of Tutankhamen -- a tomb Emerson knew was there, but for which he did not have the rights to dig. Meanwhile, Sethos shows up, embroiled in a secret service plot that will soon pull in all the Emersons.

The joy of reading the Amelia Peabody books isn't as much in the plots -- though they are good enough to carry the book -- but in getting together with a group of characters that we've grown to like a lot -- Ame
Jun 05, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The novel Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters is a long and slow. Frankly, after listening to the entire unabridged version, I am still trying to understand what the plot is all about. This book lacks a conflict or a purpose and resolves nothing at the end.

Set in the early 1900's in Egypt during the discovery of the Tomb of King Tut (The Golden Bird), several British characters walk around and talk alot, but, not about much. The "sub-plot", the opening of the tomb and the vast collection
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Elizabeth Peters is a pen name of Barbara Mertz. She also wrote 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 Frede ...more

Other books in the series

Amelia Peabody (1 - 10 of 20 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)
“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?”
“So now you have it. The plot, the whole plot, and nothing but the plot.” 3 likes
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