Stand-alone historical fantasy about Alexander the Great.

Publication year: 1993
Format: Audio
Running time: 13 hours, 40 minutes
Publisher: Audible
Narrator: John McLain

Meriamon is the daughter of the last Pharaoh (Nectanebo II) and also a Priestess. Egypt is under the yoke of the Persians and so the Egyptian gods have sent Meriamon to Alexander the Great to plead for him to come to Egypt and rule it. Meriamon has a shadow, a protector, and she literally talks to the gods. She arrives to Alexander’s camp right after the battle of Issus and becomes a doctor of sorts. Alexander is fascinated by her and talks with her quite frequently. He also assigned one of his companions as her bodyguard. Nikos has been wounded in battle and fears that he’ll lose his arm. He’s very unhappy when he has to guard a woman.

Alexander’s generals are very concerned with the succession. He has no male heir and he’s not mar-ried so the generals increasingly ask him to get married. And Meriamon is a daughter of a king, even though she’s a foreigner.

In this book Alexander is shown as a god-like figure whom his men worship and he’s really the cen-ter of the novel. They would do anything for him and follow him gladly. Haphaistion is shown as his soulmate, far more than just a lover, although later he’s referred to as a “friend” which was a bit strange to me. Other prominent characters are General Ptolemy, a hetaera called Thais, and a cat Sekhmet.

As far as I know the book is very well researched and accurate, except for the fantasy parts of course. This is a world where gods talk to some people and prophets can be real. Meriamon is an independent woman because she’s part of the Egyptian royalty and the Hellenes don’t like that.

I very much enjoyed the characters and the setting but it’s a romance which I don’t really care for. I also didn’t care for the reader whose voice was strangely flat all the time. I’m now tempted to get it as a print book.