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The Mummy Case

(Amelia Peabody #3)

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  14,472 ratings  ·  777 reviews
Radcliffe Emerson, the irascible husband of fellow archaeologist and Egyptologist Amelia Peabody, has earned the nickname "Father of Curses"—and at Mazghunah he demonstrates why. Denied permission to dig at the pyramids of Dahshoor, he and Amelia are resigned to excavating mounds of rubble in the middle of nowhere. And there is nothing in the barren area worthy of their in ...more
Paperback, 404 pages
Published February 22nd 2011 by Harper (first published 1985)
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4.04  · 
Rating details
 ·  14,472 ratings  ·  777 reviews

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Jul 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5000-books
So glad I decided to read this series as it just keeps getting better and better.

In The Mummy Case we get more of the wonderful Amelia rampaging her way across Egypt with her equally wonderful husband, Emerson. Both characters are larger than life and always entertaining, especially in their dealings with each other. In this episode in the series their son, Ramses, joins them for the first time on an archaeological dig. He adds a whole new dimension to the humour partly because he falls into tro
**edited 01/27/14

WARNING: do not read this novel if you plan to maintain any awe of Victorian archaeologists such as DeMorgan, Petrie, Wilbour, or Wallis Budge. After reading this book, every time you see a mention of DeMorgan's hallowed name in a museum or article, you will start giggling about his pathetically eager desire (at least, that portrayed in this novel) to be portrayed heroically in the Illustrated London Times:

(I think the woman in the front might be Amelia herself.)
Petrie's illustr
Jun 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
The Mummy Case by Elizabeth Peters is a 2007 William Morrow publication. (This book was originally published in 1985)

It’s always embarrassing when I have to admit I never realized Elizabeth Peters was a pseudonym for the one and only Barbara Michaels, until about five years ago. When I made that connection, I was determined to get know this side of this talented author.

Although Elizabeth Peters wrote two other series, the Amelia Peabody series has to be the most beloved of her characters.

This t
“Catastrophically precocious”—this is how Amelia Peabody Emerson describes her young son, Walter Emerson (better known as Ramses, for his demanding nature). Several times during this novel, a chill runs down her spine when she wonders just where her darling son is and what mischief he has found in which to embroil himself!

The fact that the author herself is an Egyptologist really makes these books fun. She uses all the historical archaeologists as characters for Emerson to roar and bellow at whe
Bree T
The Mummy Case is the third novel in the Amelia Peabody series and once again we open with the Emerson’s in England. They plan to return to Egypt and dig at the pyramids of Dahshoor, leaving behind their precocious son Ramses with Emerson’s brother Walter and his wife Evelyn. Evelyn has just suffered a ‘disappointment’ (miscarriage) and having Ramses comforts her. Plans are thwarted when Evelyn falls pregnant again and even Emerson and Amelia can see that it will be impossible for them to leave ...more
✨ Gramy ✨
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this gem of a story through Hoopla, which I access through my local library. It is thrilling when I discover that a series I enjoy in audio as much as I did this one, by the talented and versatile narrator, Susan O'Malley.
This is the third book of the series and commences the year after Radcliff and Amelia Emerson came out of retirement.  Together, they decide to take their amazingly precocious child with them on a dig in the pyramids of Egypt for the winter season, where they a
Each time I read a new book in this series, I fall in love with the characters more and more. Amelia & Emerson are one of the best couples in fiction and I end up laughing so much, that I usually bookmark half the book.

As usual with the series, this book is set in an archeological dig in Egypt but for the first time, the Emersons have brought their precocious son Ramses. Soon enough, Amelia & Emerson find a dead body which Amelia cannot leave well enough alone.

Emerson and Amelia are a
Feb 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Amelia Peabody is back! Yay! She and Emerson haven’t gotten the dig they were hoping for. Instead they feel like they are working on a trash heap. So a bored Amelia looks for trouble and finds it.
Now here is the problem with reviewing a mystery; how to talk about it without giving anything away. 🤔
Since I’m a character reader, I’ll take that route.
Amelia is a bluestocking. She loves to be in control of everyone and everything. Her favorite things to try to control are the men in her life. The
Yet another fun mystery featuring Amelia Peabody. While I have to admit the mystery didn't interest me much, the repartee between the indomitable Amelia and Emerson, and Ms. Peabody's (or Mrs. Emerson's) narration, more than made up for it. Ramses can be amusing also, but he can be a bit too much sometimes, probably because he is too precocious and smart to be believed. How many languages does this five-year-old know? Although I do think this specific example is the whole point of these books an ...more
Abigail Bok
It has been decades since I’ve read any of the novels by Elizabeth Peters. In the 1970s and 1980s they were among my chiefest delights when in the mood for light reading—though her Egyptian novels were always the ones I liked the least. Her heroines were pure liberation for a young woman born in the 1950s, swashbuckling and self-confident, cutting themselves a swath through the world.

I found myself a little less amused this time around, though Amelia Peabody is still a delightful character (to r
Definitely my least favourite of the series so far, primarily because so much of it focuses on Christianity with so little understanding. The view Peters takes of late 19th-century missions in Egypt doesn't jive with what I've heard before in other places about the very real social services they provided; the dismissal of the 3,000 or so years of Egyptian history since the pharoahs seemed snobbish; and the idea that a scrap of a gnostic gospel would be at all challenging to sincere believers is, ...more
Jul 30, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This 3rd book in the Amelia Peabody series was a huge disapointment. The first two were hilarious and fun to read, despite the weakness of a having a pretty vague or unremarkable mysterie at their core. Peters seems to not have had much of a thought as to who the perpetrators or the mytery should be whe sitting down and writing this book. It feels like at the end whe we find out what was going on and who the villains are, she is half heartedly trying to fit the persons in as the criminals rather ...more
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
Oh, dear.

It just doesn't get any better. And I don't mean that as a complimentary phrase.

No indeed.

Someone told me that vol 3 was much better than vol 2. It is not. It's worse. Not even listening to it as an audiobook helped. Barbara Rosenblat underwhelmed me greatly as the reader, with her horrid rendering of the despicable little dwarf Ramses, and making Amelia sound as arch as the St Louis monument. Again, I was too busy to stop and delete it, so I bore with it. Ehhhh.

Who takes a four-year-ol
Debbie "Buried in Her TBR Pile"
4 enjoyable stars

I like this series - I really do. I bought some of them on sale on Audible and they work for me when driving on road trips. Time passes quickly when you aren't thinking with your 6yr old self - "when will we get there?", "are we there yet?". I find myself speaking in a slight upper crust English accent when I arrive at my destination. The dry humor has me chuckling and I like the insights into ancient Egypt, culture, etc.

So why 4 stars? I loved the narrator in book 1 - she nail
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
I first picked up this series on the recommendation of a friend because of my love for Gail Carriger's Soulless. I can see the similarities, minus supernatural creatures, but I've never liked this series quite as much.

And of a series that I've thought to be entertaining enough, but not great, this was the worst of the lot so far.

Now, I do mostly like Amelia and Emerson. Their love/rivalry thing is kind of cute, and the banter is cute, but it got a bit wearying by the end that they're just consta
Sep 15, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The five-star scale is unsatisfactory and should change to ten. I give three but this novel is superior to others that have received that designation from me. It doesn't reach four stars because Ramses, estimated at six years-old, was annoying and this mystery merely happened arbitrarily around us. Its theme was Amelia's compulsion to sleuth. There wasn't even any archaeological coup, just a lovely look at the family, including loyal and intelligent cat Bastet, whose constant presence I certainl ...more
Quite a bit less engaging than the first book, The Mummy Case suffered very badly from an overdose of pompousness. From Ramses stilted sentences, and seriously WHAT 7 or 8 year old child sounds like a 50 year old college professor (and the speech impediment was just freaking annoying) to Amelia and even Emerson, whom we expect to be stuffy. Amelia's narrative bordered on self righteous and I rapidly tired of her know-it-allness. Not to mention she spent most of the book cutting off every male wh ...more
It had all the usual funnies I expect from an Amelia Peabody book but the plot was very confusing. I don't think I understood what happened, maybe the characters didn't either!
Gotta love Peters for her romantic heroes and in-depth knowledge of Egyptology. Such book-candy.
Emma Rose Ribbons
Here's the thing with the Amelia Peabody books - I find them quite enjoyable, but I do need to space them out or everything sounds over-the-top silly. I hadn't read any in a long while so The Mummy Case struck the perfect balance between serious Egyptology, ludicrous infant prodigy (Ramses is grating, but then his parents can barely stand him which makes him, strangely enough, a little less insufferable) and a good helping of marital banter. The majority of the book's cosy but the end has the he ...more
Vicki Cline
This third book in the series is the best so far, mainly because of the presence of Ramses, Amelia and Emerson's precocious son. It's not clear how old he is, 4 or 5, and he can't yet pronounce 'th', making his rather long speeches quite amusing. They have taken him to Egypt for their current dig, which is at a mediocre site. Not far away at Dashoor another group is excavating some pyramids, which Amelia has been longing for. Ramses is allowed to do digging of his own as long as he takes along a ...more
Even though it's pretty much the same formula as the first two books, I still found it an entertaining and delightful read! I adored the continued banter and antics of Peabody and Emerson. Ramses is such a doll, and I find him to be a much beloved addition.

I plan to continue listening to the series as a palate cleanser.
Jun 12, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: africa, 2019, middle-east
Read this for book club. All of us were mostly in agreement that it was ok -- various pluses & minuses to the book.

It was pleasant enough for its genre, while it had things that both amused me & bothered me. The ending felt too rushed & didn't clearly tie up everything, imo. The book won't be memorable & I probably won't read others in the series, but it was fine while reading it.
Amelia and Emerson are back in Egypt, along with their overly precocious son Ramses and the cat Bastet. Since Emerson refused to apply for a firman in advance, De Morgan, the director of antiquities has already chosen the pyramids Emerson had promised Amelia. Emerson's hot temper got him reduced to excavating a Roman cemetery and flattened pyramids. The Emersons are also beset by missionaries and are kept on their toes keeping their son out of trouble. Walter has requested papyri and when Amelia ...more
Rebecca Huston
Last year I started to read the Amelia Peabody series by the late Elizabeth Peters, and discovered that I liked it. In the third book in the series, the Emersons are returning to Egypt, but this time they have their young, precocious son Ramses in tow, along with the cat Bastet. Assigned a distant, unremarkable site to excavate, the digging season starts out uncomfortable, but soon enough there are plenty of eccentricities to complicate matters, from several American missionaries, an overstuffed ...more
Jul 12, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I gave the first book of this series 5 stars, the second 3, and this only 1 star. It made me wonder if editors actually edit books once an author has had some success, because I don't see how any editor could have given this book the green light as is if they had actually read it. What was witty and clever and funny in the first book has become pompous and lecture-like and unfunny in the third, and I found myself skimming and skipping pages just to get to the end. Their 'precocious' child Ramses ...more
Dec 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: victorian, mysteries
Dec 2011: Ramses at his childhood best wit' lisp and de cat Bastet and all. Also - Peabody's berzerker rage and the introduction of the MC. Oh, I love old friends! Read on BOT (Rosenblatt again!)

Aug 2018: Argh! These Susan O’Malley recordings are HORRIBLE! At the very least, common words ought to be pronounced properly. I’ve given up expecting the Arabic words to be correct. This book has several places where whole paragraphs have been inserted later, possibly by a different reader as well. I ca
Rebecca Hill
Feb 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Peabody and Emerson are hoping for a quiet dig season, but with their son Ramses along for the ride, nothing is going to be quiet.. ever!
As soon as they get to Cairo, they are embroiled in a new mystery and Amelia is sure that there is a master criminal afoot. After two murders and some mysterious disappearances of antiquities, even Emerson has to agree that something is going on.

I LOVE these books. Embroiled with history and a little mystery, these books will keep you chuckling as you go thro
Mar 16, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
My experience of this third book in the Amelia Peabody series was a combination of reading it on Kindle and listening to the audio book narrated by the marvelous Barbara Rosenblat.
These books are pure fluff and fantasy. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to continue with the series after reading the second book, particularly because I found Emerson annoying, but my sister suggested trying the audio and I think she was right that this is the better way to consume these books. Barbara Rosenblat lends the n
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even though I cannot relate to Amelia's parenting style in the least - these are still highly, highly entertaining books!!! Love them!!
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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)
  • Lion in the Valley  (Amelia Peabody, #4)
  • The Deeds of the Disturber (Amelia Peabody, #5)
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  • 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)
  • The Falcon at the Portal (Amelia Peabody, #11)
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