Book Review: Pharaoh, by Wilbur Smith

It’s always fun to read a Wilbur Smith book. These books are … well, they’re SET in ancient Egypt, but I’m beginning to think that’s just to give the author a jumping-off point. They’ve developed into “fantasy that happens to be set in ancient Egypt”. Which is fun, because Smith has given us the somewhat unreliable narrator of Taita for six books now, spanning three generations. Taita, we discovered a couple of books ago, is actually divine, which is why he never ages and is perpetually young and strong (and, according to him at least, drop-dead gorgeous). It’s fun stuff, and we get to follow Taita’s adventures throughout many more books than if he was merely human.
This book follows the adventures of Taita as he drives the last of the Hyksos from Egypt (he was there for their invasion of Egypt too, which makes him VERY long-lived). The main characters here are Prince Rameses and Princess Serrena, the granddaughter of Queen Lostris, Taita’s mistress from the very first book. So we get, essentially, a family saga, with one character (who never ages) escorting us through the whole story. I recommend this for anyone who likes a historical novel — but isn’t too bothered about historical accuracy.

Pharaoh by Wilbur Smith

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