This is the seventh book in the addictive Amelia Peabody –series.

After the events in the previous book, The Last Camel Died at Noon, Amelia and Emerson have adopted the young girl Nefret.

Amelia is doing her best to try to teach Nefret all the skills that a proper English upper-class girl should have but it’s a daunting task because Amelia herself isn’t the most average Victorian lady to begin with. In addition she feels that her marriage to Emerson has started to become a bit too stable and boring. That’s why she is determined to leave their son Ramses at home when Emerson and Amelia herself are returning to Egypt for excavations. Much to her surprise Ramses himself wants to stay in England to be near Nefret. So both Nefret and Ramses will stay at Aunt Evelyn’s place so that Nefret will get a proper education. Amelia is determined to have a second honeymoon with Emerson.

Things are never, of course, that easy for the Emersons. Soon, they meet old friends and enemies as well. They are subjected to strange attacks and finally Emerson himself is kidnapped.

This book is very much a return to the old haunts; it’s full of familiar characters and places. The Emersons even return to Amarna, where the first book took place and Amelia refers to previous events quite often. This is definitely not the book to read first in this series! (Although I don’t really understand why anyone wouldn’t want start with the first book in a series.)

I enjoyed both the mystery and the humorous writing style, as usual. Ramses’ letters to his parents where very enjoyable as were Amelia’s reactions to them. Unfortunately, I didn’t really care for the plot twist after the kidnapping and so, I didn’t really care for the way Emerson behaved. (Emerson at his worst, perhaps?) Near the beginning of the book, Amelia and Emerson discuss a way to start a larger operation in Egypt and I’m curious to see if and how it will come about.

All in all, a satisfying read.