Book Review: Crocodile on the Sandbank, by Elizabeth Peters
Amelia Peabody has inherited wealth and a strong character, but not beauty in the Victorian era of 1884. When boredom sets in, Amelia Peabody decides to fulfill her dream of becoming an Egyptologist. While traveling in Rome, she rescues Evelyn Barton-Forbes, and the two become fast friends in spite of their differences. They set off for Cairo and then sail up the Nile, determined to find an archaeological site where they can dig. The only problem is that the site they have chosen is already occupied by two brothers. Walter Emerson, who is a kind and friendly gentleman, soon falls for Evelyn, but he faces stiff competition as Evelyn’s former suitors brave the desert to win her hand after she inherits wealth. And Amelia, who swore she would never marry, finds herself drawn to the crabby but incredibly handsome Radcliffe Emerson. Mummies haunt the site, suspicious accidents occur, and soon all their lives are in danger. But nobody can withstand Amelia Peabody’s investigations and machinations, and she is determined to save the day.
I loved this book! The story is a delightful adventure, the writing is witty, highly entertaining, and well researched, but what shines the brightest is the remarkable and memorable character of Amelia: she is stubborn, exasperating, and strongly opinionated, but at the same time funny, kind, and loyal. Her newfound friends are also vivid, intriguing characters. Where Amelia goes, intrigue and mayhem follow, but Amelia always wins in the end.
This is the first of the Amelia Peabody mysteries. Reader beware: Once you’ve read one, you’re hooked, and you will have to read the others.