Friday, 12 June 2009
The Laughter of Dead Kings - Elizabeth Peters
I have been reading Elizabeth Peter's novels now for many years, and have thoroughly enjoyed every one of them. 'The Laughter of Dead Kings' is the latest in the 'Vicky Bliss Murder Mystery' series. It reprises the characters of Vicky Bliss a tall, blonde American Professor of Art History, her erstwhile lover 'Sir John Smythe,' a former antiquities and art thief now going straight, and Schmidt, Vicky's madcap boss at the Museum of Art in Munich.
The plot centres around the theft of the mummy of one of Ancient Egypt's famous pharaohs from under the noses of the authorities in the Valley of the Kings. A desperate visit from an old friend, who is also an Inspector of Antiquities in Upper Egypt, begging for their help leads to Vicky, John and Schmidt pursuing leads from London, to Rome, to Berlin and finally to Egypt and the Valley of the Kings itself.
Throw in a handsome, charismatic Head of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, an agent called Suzi who pretends to be in love with Schmidt, and a thoroughly unexpected villain and you have an effervescent mixture of murder mystery and comedy, with a strong dash of romance thrown in!
A very easy read, so pack it for the pool or drag it out of your overstuffed handbag for a lunchtime read in the park!