Elizabeth Peters, Guardian of the Horizon

Posted January 4, 2011 by Kathy Davie in

Guardians of the Horizon
Series: Amelia Peabody, 16 (I think it’s #11)
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh lord, this was good! Do read The Last Camel Died at Noon if you want the background to this particular sequel. And do read the Editor’s Note at the beginning of every book. It’s not a typical editor’s note but a part of the story.

Now for the negative, this story takes place when Ramses is 20 and Nefret is 23, immediately after Ape Who Guards the Balance in which Abdullah dies, so chronologically, this story is way out of place—pop Guardian of the Horizon into 11th place and push the others up one.

Tarek’s cousin shows up at Amarna House in England begging the Emersons to follow him back to the Lost Oasis and rescue Tarek, his family, and their people from some terrible disease. Going back is tricky for two reasons: 1) Emerson, Peabody, and Ramses barely escaped with their lives the last time they were there when they rescued the 13-year-old Nefret and 2) it’s taken Merasen 5 months to gain England. Is there anyone still alive after all this time?

Additional concerns revolve around the fact that the Lost Oasis must remain a secret from the world and the world is much too fascinated with the Emersons. They can’t decide if Merasen is duplicitous or simply young. On the journey, their people are attacked forcing them to leave more behind to care for them. Abdullah makes his first appearance in Amelia’s dreams and sets the standard for the future—cryptic utterances and amused love.

Im tellin’ ya, it’s action aplenty in Guardian. They dabble in archeological pursuits on their way to the Oasis and as a way to through off suspicion while there as they plot their coup d’etat.

I do adore this series. The characters are beguiling, the history is fascinating especially as Peters weaves real-life events into her stories, and the adventures are continuous with a warm, equal approach to all. I do love how the Emersons give the put down to their fellow, bigoted Europeans as they embrace their workers and the native peoples (well, ya can’t really just say Egyptian as then we’d be leaving out the Arabs, the Bedouin, the…)

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