Lord of the Silent by Elizabeth Peters
Genre: Historical Mystery
Series: #13 in the Amelia Peabody series publication order, #15 in story chronology order
Publisher: Recorded Books
Publication Date: 2001 Recorded Books (Book originally published 2001)
Length: 16 hours, 12 minutes
Read by: Barbara Rosenblat
The Short Version:
In 1916 Egypt Amelia Peabody Emerson and her family hunt for treasure and the identity of criminals while trying to stay alive.
Why I Read It:
This is one of my favorite series and my friend at Beth Fish Reads and I planned to listen to it close to the same time (her review is here).
From the publisher
It is the autumn of 1916, and war has cast its long shadow across Egypt. Cairo is filled with soldiers, and the ancient tombs are filled with treasure hunters. Amidst this chaos, the Emersons have come for their yearly dig. When Amelia Peabody Emerson discovers a fresh corpse in an antique tomb, she knows this season will be a most intriguing one.
Note on series order: I read this one out of publication order because I’m reading the series in order of the story. You can find the chronology here.
By now it’s no secret that I love this series and I can’t imagine experiencing it in any other format than the audio version narrated by the wonderful Barbara Rosenblat.
There are so many ongoing storylines extend throughout the series that it’s really difficult to even mention much of the plot without getting spoilery. I think it’s best if I just hit some of my random thoughts and a few favorite passages that made me back up and listen again.
I enjoyed this entry in the series a lot. After some major revelations and key changes in character relationships in the previous book I wasn’t sure what would be next for the Emerson family.
There was adventure and life threatening situations, of course, with plenty of humor along the way.
Told mostly from Amelia’s viewpoint which over the course of the series I’ve learned is does not exactly make for unbiased narration. There are sections (described as from “Manuscript H” that tell the parts of the story that take Amelia’s son and his wife away from Amelia’s direct observation. The transitions between the major narrative devices are not new and by this point in the series are familiar and smooth.
There were a couple of surprise reappearances of characters from earlier in the series that I hadn’t expected to see again but I was glad to see how it worked in the story.
As I said earlier, one of the things I love about this series is that Amelia continually makes me laugh. I’ve already shared some quotes in some recent Weekend Update posts but these are some additional quotes that made me giggle:
“What shall we do, then?”
“Wait,” said Emerson. “Someone is bound to attack you sooner or later, it happens every year.”
The children had been gone for almost a week when I decided Emerson’s laissez-faire approach was not going to work. No one had attacked us. It was extremely vexing . . .
There were several domestic matters to be dealt with before we could leave for Luxor. I had always envied male police officers and detectives their freedom from such distractions; Mr. Sherlock Holmes, for example, never had to condern himself with ordering meals, settling disputes with contentious servants, or coping with small sulky chldren and large sulky cats.
Amelia’s son Ramses has gone from a character who annoyed me in the early books (when he was a child) to a romantic lead as the series continues. I never would have expected that he would become a favorite character. I can’t say THE favorite character because frankly I have so many favorite characters at this point in the series
I truly adore Barbara Rosenblat narration of this series. Over the years she has taken her characterization of Ramses from an annoying toddler to an even more annoying young child to an adult who is downright sexy. All the way she has kept his character consistent, yet growing and developing throughout the series I still maintain that I would probably not enjoy these books as much if I read them in print.
This continues to be one of my favorite series to experience via audio but you really need to start at the beginning with Crocodile on the Sandbank.
As for me, I’ve already started listening to the next book in the series.
Rating 4.5/5 for the book
Rating 4.5/5 for the narration
SoundBytes is a weekly roundup of audio book reviews hosted by Jen at Devourer of Books.