Mistress of the Temple by Yvonne Harlech
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
would hesitate to call this book a classic that will be remembered for generation to come, yet this work has several redeeming features. The first feature that stands out is that the author has done extensive research in oder to write this book and there is a rather extensive bibliography at the end of the book for those who wish to do further research. I found that there was lots of information on Ancient Herbs the way the Egyptians use them. There is also extensive information on life in the Egyptian Temples. One gets a good insight into what life was like in Ancient Egypt.
The core characters are real people as well. King Seti was an actual Egyptian pharoaqh, Bentreshy was a devotee to Isis in the city of Abydos. When the story jumps into modern times Dorothy is a real person and she wrote several books. None the less this is a fictional account of their lives with several incidents put in to fill the blanks. THe main characters of the story are Bentreshy and Dorothy and both in this story are incarnations of the same soul.
What the this tale lacks is a story structure. IT comes off as being a diary of a soul that has been twice incarnated . There is no rising action, or climax in the story.THere is a setting, time and place clearly indicated. Despite the lack of plot you will find yourself glued to the book or reading device just waiting for what comes next.
Bentreshy is the daughter of an Egyptian soldier, who sends her to the temple of Isis as he can no longer properly care for her. In the temple she learns the healing arts of Egyptian herbs, spells of Isis and beauty secrets of Ancient Egyptians. While she grows up in the temple she befriends Nubiti, a songstress, Kebi, a snake charmer and Inhapi a healer. While growing up in the temple she witnesses the mummification of her friend, interacts with Anubis and deals with a sadistic priest. Later she becomes a dedicant to Isis and does not marry, yet she meets King Seti who is definitely not married.
Dorothy her incarnation in modern times lives through world war I. Her interest in Egypt sets her apart from all the other British children her age. Starting with an accident when she was young, Dorothy exhibit strange behavior and has visions of ancient Egypt. In her quest to learn more about Egypt she devours books on the subject and learns how to read hieroglyphics. Her skills in Egyptology lead her to a museum which houses relics from Egypt. Together with E . Wallis Budge, a famous scholar, they translate documents and make awesome discoveries. THe world war and Egyptian bombing leads her to the country side. To make a long story short her destiny will lead her back to Egypt.
IF Egypt is your thing then this book is for you to read.
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