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The Serpent on the Crown (Amelia Peabody, #17)
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The Serpent on the Crown

(Amelia Peabody #17)

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  6,475 ratings  ·  257 reviews
A priceless relic has been delivered to the Emerson home overlooking the Nile. But more than history surrounds this golden likeness of a forgotten king, for it is said early death will befall anyone who possesses it..

The woman who implores the renowned family of archaeologists and adventurers to accept the cursed statue insists the ill-gotten treasure has already killed he
Paperback, 496 pages
Published March 28th 2006 by Avon (first published 2005)
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4.17  · 
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 ·  6,475 ratings  ·  257 reviews

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May 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: peters-elizabeth
Hooray, this series is back on track for me. Generally speaking I enjoyed the early books of the series before the advent of the children who were featured too heavily for my taste. Then the previous book, Guardian of the Horizon, was such a dud to me that I stopped following the series. At long last I decided to tackle the next book and am so glad I did! Yes, Ramses and Nefret are featured heavily, but they are more mature now and I enjoyed them along with Amelia, Emerson and the rest of the cl ...more
It's 1922 and the Emersons are ready to begin another season of excavations. When a Mrs. Petherick arrives breathless at the Emersons' home begging to see Professor Emerson and rambling about her husband's breath being sucked from him, a priceless artifact and a curse, the Emersons are less than impressed. Mrs. Petherick, a writer of gothic novels, believes a golden statuette of an ancient god has cursed her family and she is the next to die. Emerson promises to keep the object and remove any cu ...more
Mar 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
I think my favorite part of this is when Amelia arranges a family meeting with all the chairs lined up in rows and herself behind a desk, and then pretends that it's a totally normal way to have a discussion.
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
Susan in NC
Mar 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, reread
I have enjoyed rereading this series over the last several months after enjoying The Painted Queen, Joan Hess’ completion of an unfinished Elizabeth Peters novel. I decided to reread the books from around that point in the series to see if they held up for me after so many years.

I love the humor, the mysteries, the recurring cast of characters, the exotic locale of Egypt, the archeological information (Peters had a PhD in Egyptology), and especially the main character of Amelia Peabody Emerson a
Rachel N.
It's 1922 and the Emerson clan is back excavating in Egypt after the war. Mrs. Petherick gives Emerson a statue of an Egyptian king that she claims is cursed so the "black afrit" won't kill her too. Someone also seems intent on harming Ramses. I enjoy this series and loved having nearly the whole family together again for a mystery filled with lots of humor. I'm sad there are only two more books in the series that were entirely written by Peters, the last book was completed by Joan Hess. When I ...more
This was a much better story than the last.
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was ok
Amelia Peabody and her vast and varied family face one of their final mysteries, when a woman gives them a cursed statue and demands they save her from the black affrit that's been haunting her. Of course, someone dies and there's a great deal of danger and early 20th century daring-do.

This is not really my type of book, so I suspect the hardcover made it into possession by way of my mom. This is definitely a Mom Book; there's danger, violence and romance without being shockingly graphic. One c
Barbara ★
First read April 10, 2010
If you like this series, then you'll love this one. Same scenario, same people (Peabody, Emerson, Ramses, Nefret and Cyrus) but different mystery and different tomb in the Valley of the Kings. Of course, you know someone is going to be in mortal danger - no difference here. As predictable as it is, it's enjoyable anyway. I love the edition of Ramses and Nefret's four year old twins. They're a hoot!

Second read August 22, 2014
Now I'm following the series in order and it's
Julia DeBarrioz
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery, egypt, victorian
So much egyptological mystery goodness....

I love it that Sethos is part of The Family in these later books, its so delightful.

And the Children! Omg they're too much!

(view spoiler)
I love this series! I've been saving it because I don't want it to end. I like the return of all the good characters. It was a feel good, cozy book to me after all the years I've gone on an adventure with them.
John Neece
May 15, 2019 rated it it was ok
I feel that Elizabeth Peters is an intelligent writer and I could see how many would love the snobbish humor of her heroes. Yet, I found myself getting tired of the book and wanting more to happen.
Mar 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I can always step into Amelia's world and feel right at home!
Loved it!
Jun 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
A bit repetitious, but a fine tantalizing episode with no young lovers.
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love this series so much. We're very nearly to the Tutankhamen discovery I think, I can't wait to experience that with my favorite archaeological family!
Dec 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, audiobooks
Another fun entry in the Peabody/Emerson adventures. I love the twins and I especially love not having to deal with a lovesick, whiny Ramses. This is one of my favorites, as it has plenty of action, some fun twists, all my favorite recurring characters, and some great new secondary characters.
Jamie Collins
I prefer to read series books in publication order, but I have made an exception in this case and skipped over Guardian of the Horizon. That one is a prequel, set earlier in the lives of the Emersons. This series spans four decades, and I have enjoyed watching this family age and grow as the years pass (although the author cheated a little bit concerning Amelia and Emerson's ages) and I don't want to regress them now.

This book is set in 1922, and the Emersons return to the Valley of the Kings. T
Apr 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
As usual, there is another body, treasure, and several attempts to end Rameses life. All of Luxor is intent on the fabulous statuette given to Emerson by the dead woman. Who is the rightful owner? Who discovered it and where? And who will do anything to obtain it. Their exciting adventures once more cause the Emerson's to place there excavations on temporary hold until the dastardly villain can be caught.
Felisa Rosa
Jun 10, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
Ms. Peters has obviously never dwelt upon a crucial writing rule: don't include scenes that do not serve a useful purpose such as plot or character development. You can get away with this type of rambling in literature if you're good enough, but I certainly wouldn't call this literature.
Nov 11, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yup, I'm hooked. Add another author added to my must read list. Although this book is actually number 13 or so in the series, I didn't feel lost in the plot.

To boot, the woman who read the story Barbara Rosenblat, did a wonderful job.
Pamela Mclaren
Jun 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
Another adventure in Egypt with the Peabody Emerson family. It is 1922, and as usual Amelia "Peabody" Emerson is the know-it-all matriarch who tries to guide and manage not only the everyday activities of the family — which has grown by marriage and children — but the mystery that always seems to assume this family. This time, the Emersons have return to the Valley of the Kings where they are approached by a widow and her story of a cursed solid gold statuette that killed her husband and is now ...more
Although I believe this story is set a few years after the previous one (in the internal chronology, and that I listened to), they sort of blend together for me, though they are quite different. This is partly because I started listening to this one immediately after finishing the prior one, instead of listening to something else in between as I often do. But it is also that the scene is so similar; the Emerson's are very much settled in their house near Luxor, where in earlier books they seemed ...more
Jun 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
An Egyptian mystery as told by Amelia Peabody, who is an amazing women and Egyptologist in the heyday of discovery, the 1920's. She and her family were ready to have some tea when and strange woman came to the door asking them to get rid of a curse from an artifact. They reluctantly accepted the challenge and unwrapped the golden statue that had been in the woman's late husbands collection. It was a beautiful piece, no doubt stollen from a pharaoh's tomb. They were not taken by the the "curse" i ...more
Lisa Brown
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Emersons are in Egypt again, and as always, trouble seems to search them out. This time the trouble comes in the form of a widow who presents them with a priceless Egyptian statue, claiming that it is cursed, and asking the professor to rid it of the curse. It seems that there is more to the story, especially once she not only disappears, but the family's lives are put in danger by an unknown foe. Amelia must discover where the statue came from, and the source of the threats before it is too ...more
Meg Morden
Another great installment in the Amelia Peabody series. Set in 1922, the stage is set for the most spectacular find of Egyptian archaeology. The Emersons are working at Deir el Medina when they are visited by a female writer of vampire thrillers. She tells a story of an Egyptian curse and gives (gets rid of) a beautiful and priceless golden statue in the Amarna style to them for her safety. The Emersons don't believe her for a minute and think it is just a publicity stunt until they seem to be u ...more
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
I picked this book because I wanted to see what Elizabeth Peters was like, and this one seemed to be one with the highest reviews. I love "who-done-it" mysteries, but I have to say I found her writing, as illustrated by this book, somewhat out-of-date. I am sure it is a favorite for those who are her fans, but much much time does one really want to spend time with reading about these, to me, stereotypical British archaeologists operating in the early 1920's in Egypt, between the end of WWI and t ...more
Nov 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
There's only one bad thing about reading this there are only 3 left in the series! This was one of my favorites. The emphasis was on the mysteries (yes, more than one mystery to solve). It takes place in 1922 which means Amelia and Emerson are well into their 60s and they are still awesome. I like how these later stories are told partly in Amelia's first person voice and partly in Ramses 3rd person voice. I also enjoyed seeing Daoud play a big part in the story. And of course, the tw ...more
Vickey Foggin
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really loved these books and couldn’t stop to write reviews - I sped read my way through all 20 without stopping. The books are clever, funny, filled with historical fact and running jokes and thrilling adventure. I think it’s the first series I’ve read where o liked them all. They all get 5 stars and I am legitimately sad there are not more for me to read. I am going to copy paste this review for the rest - they are all amazing.
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Amelia and family are back in Luxor for excavation season of the winter 1922. Golden statue found, abductions, attacks, excavations interrupted, and murder make for another chaotic, hilarious adventure with our favorite Egyptologists. Usual clever dialogue, entertaining individuals, and Amelia involved and attempting to guide everyone gives another entertaining romp with old friends!
Feb 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
The plot lines are always a bit similar but this is a great series and it's fun to see the characters grow over time. I've been wondering forever how they were going to deal with Howard Carter discovering King Tut's tomb instead of Emerson and I got my answer at the end of this one. Very cleverly done.
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Play Book Tag: The Serpent on the Crown by Elizabeth Peters 4 stars 2 10 Dec 09, 2018 09:25AM  

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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)
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