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In 54 BC, Egypt is bankrupt and deep in debt due to a long line of inept Ptolemies.  This is 5 years before Caesar steps foot in Egypt (13 years before Antony).  At 15, Cleopatra has been plopped on the throne to support her dad’s early retirement, and there’s a learning curve ... where relationships are concerned.  Star-crossed, separated, reunited, desired ... just normal people ... all set in a backdrop of ancient Egypt with embezzling Romans, rude politicians, an ex-witchdoctor, priestesses, working girls, and a small dog … what’s not to like? 

 

Anxious to refill the treasury and payoff the debts, Cleopatra tries a number of different schemes.  She sends two scribes on a secret mission of 1000’s of miles up and down the Nile (romantically bonding them with priestesses to make sure they come back).  She plots the legal demise of a Roman tax collector with the women in his house, tries to whittle away loyalties of 2,500 Romans with the help of Alexandrian women, deals with domestic and international politics, plays both sides of a diplomatic game for patronage, befuddles Caesar in Gaul, and stumbles with her own coming-of-age issues.

 

See how a woman is trained to snare a husband, without him realizing what’s happening.  What kind of dance is it, exactly, that the scribe does to amuse his paramour in her bedroom?  What could that scholar have possibly done to get him banned-for-life from a woman’s temple?  Watch how a storytelling Macedonian warrior gets turned into a tongue-tied puppy at first glance of a friendly Kushite.  Will the Romans ever figure out that they’re being manipulated by the entire female population of Alexandria?  What are that priestess’ OTHER tattoos?

 

It's a story about how people deal with unexpected situations and unintended consequences, and how sometimes the heart just wants what the heart wants.

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New Series, New Genre: HISTORICAL Rom-Com
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In 53 BC, 16-year-old Cleopatra has been ruling Egypt for a year, now as co-regent, while her father enjoys early retirement.  This is 4 years before Caesar steps foot in Egypt (12 years before Antony).  The country is in dire financial straits.  There’s a lot of gold and jewels buried with previous pharaohs and it’s not doing them any good, so Cleopatra, like some rulers before her, decides to restart state sponsored tomb robbing, as well as anything else she can think of to raise funds, while engaging in covert diplomacy with the Roman empire (primarily through long-distance matchmaking).

 

Cleopatra's first relationship interferes with ruling the empire.  Marriage counseling is discovered as an unpleasant part of a job promotion.  A jealous wife anxiously notices how way too many women find her awkward husband appealing.  A souvenir maker in Thebes longs for his childhood sweetheart, a fiercely independent woman who will have nothing to do with him.  A formidable Macedonian warrior quits his job in Alexandria, and travels 2200 miles up crocodile and bandit infested waters to reach his soulmate.  A charming, unassuming mute girl continues her long game to make babies with someone else’s husband.  A priestess’ twin sister takes a very Egyptian interest in her brother-in-law … and a very unlucky deaf-mute orphan girl gets a reprieve.

 

See what it’s like to be on the receiving end of arguing couples when it’s your job.  How will the divine Pharaoh manage when his daughter puts him on an allowance?  Watch Cleopatra chase-slap her favorite scribe around and around the Aphrodite shrine on her palatial luxury barge.  Witness the possible origins of organized tourism, theme parks, franchised fast food, sports betting, … and the chicken dance.

 

It's a story about how people deal with unexpected situations and unintended consequences, and how sometimes the heart just wants what the heart wants.

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2nd Book New Series, New Genre: HISTORICAL Rom-Com
Did it work for you?  Is there something you'd like to see?
Let me know how the series could continue with a review.
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Reader Forum

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My "Look Inside" texts are much cleaner than Amazon's.  Download them.  Spread them around ...  pretty please?

Feel free to download the excerpts, too.

Shenanigans in Ancient Egypt

 

A little bit of "Friends", a little bit of "Scrubs", a little bit of Indiana Jones, a tiny-tiny whiff of Robert Graves, all wound around a humorous view of historic figures.  Take a trip into Ptolemaic Egypt where men do the grunt work and women call the shots.  Cleopatra is "a" character, but she's only 15 and 16 (depending on book): none of that breathless Caesar and Marc Antony bodice bursting ... that doesn't happen for another 6 years ... and there's a lot happening outside the bounds of royal palaces.  

Tired of puffed up elitist actors promenading around and speaking like Shakespeare?  You won't find that here.  Imagine YOU were wearing a Greek tunic, Egyptian kilt, or sheath dress and were just trying to get by.

Despite Cleopatra being a teenager, these aren't for the kiddies.  Adult humor and situations, nothing explicit.

(Hover over the book images for more information)

I enjoyed this book so much that I read it straight through over the weekend. It's got a little bit of everything, politics, humor, intrigue, an expedition up the Nile, and even manages a touch of erotica without getting dirty. While the ending is perfectly satisfactory, I thought I caught a hint in the end notes that there may be another book sometimes in the distant future, so I can always hope.

I loved all of the linguistic humor and cultural misunderstandings, and the way the author made the lives of scribes and temple priestesses come alive in a by concentrating on the interesting possibilities of their professions rather than on modern sensibilities.

I wish I was a better review writer but I'm always afraid of giving away too much so I'll leave it at that.

What's New?

           Cleopatra's Family Tree (Better than you thought ...

          or much, much worse?)

      Added "Book Updates" to this page (Correcting/

          enhancing historical facts in the books)

Upcoming Attractions:

    Growing Up Cleopatra (coming of age in Ptolemaic

           Egypt)

     Historians (all the fake news you can handle)

     Free Mug Giveaway!

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