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Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews37 followers
October 4, 2021
Nefertiti, Michelle Moran

When the Crown Prince of Egypt needs a wife, the beautiful, charismatic, ambitious and connected Nefertiti is his mother's first choice. She quickly becomes accustomed to the opulence of her new life.

As Queen of the world's first great empire at the height of its power, all her dreams are realized. Beguiling and wilful, Nefertiti is soon as powerful as the Pharaoh himself.

But when her husband breaks with a thousand years of tradition, defying the priests and the military, it will take all Nefertiti's wiles to keep the nation from being torn apart.

Watching from the shadows, her sister, Mutny, detests the back-stabbing nature of palace life, and as she dreams of a simple life in the countryside, she records her sister's transformation from teenage girl to living goddess.

But Nefertiti's star quality can only take her so far, and when she's prepared to sacrifice her sister to strengthen her power, the two women become locked in a feud which only death can break...

عنوانهای چاپ شده در ایران: «نفرتی تی ملکه ابدی»؛ «نفرتی تی: ناکامیهای ملکه بلند پرواز»؛ «ملکه کافر، نفرتی‌تی: همسر آخناتن (آمنهوتب چهارم) فرعون مصر»؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش ماه فوریه سال 2008میلادی

عنوان: نفرتی تی ملکه ابدی؛ نویسنده: نویسنده: میشل موران؛ مترجم: شهکام جولایی؛ تهران، جویا، 1387؛ در 352ص؛ چاپ دوم 1388؛ شابک9789642895052؛ موضوع: داستان ملکه مصر از نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

عنوان: نفرتی تی: ناکامیهای ملکه بلند پرواز؛ نویسنده: نویسنده: میشل موران؛ مترجم: هادی عادلپور؛ تهران، کوشش، 1389؛ در 580ص؛ شابک9789642806225؛

عنوان: ملکه نفر تی تی؛ نویسنده: میشل موران؛ مترجم: بهاره پاریاب، تهران، جمهوری، 1391، در 568ص؛

عنوان: ملکه کافر، نفرتی‌تی: همسر آخناتن (آمنهوتب چهارم) فرعون مصر؛ نویسنده: میشل موران؛ مترجمها: حبیب گوهری‌راد، بهاره پاریاب؛ تهران نشر جمهوری؛ 1398؛ در 568ص؛ شابک 9786005687316؛

نِفِرتیتی یا «نِفرتی‌تی» همسر بزرگ سلطنتی (همسر اصلی) فرعون مصر«آخناتون (آخناتن)» بود؛ او به عنوان شریک سلطنت همسرش شناخته می‌شود، ایشان به زیبایی شهره بودند، پس از کشف مجسمه ی نیمتنه ‌اش در سال 1912میلادی در «مصر»، به نامداری رسید؛ «نِفِرتیتی» و همسرش که تنها به یک خدا یعنی «آتون (خدای یگانه)» احترام می‌گذاشتند، بانی یک انقلاب مذهبی بودند، و برای یکتاپرستی و تغییر دین، در تاریخ فراعنه پرآوازه هستند، و «نفرتیتی» که در طول دوره ی درگیری مذهبی «مصر»، در کنار و همراه با همسرش «آخناتون» بر «مصر»، در مقام شریک سلطنت، یا آنچنان که در برخی کتیبه ‌ها پیدا شده، به عنوان «فرعون» حکومت می‌کرد، هر چند که خیلی‌ها باوری بر این موضوع ندارند، که وی با مقام «فرعون» حکومت کرده ‌است، و بیشتر باور دارند که در مقام همسر، و مشاور اعظم و اصلی سلطنتی، بر «مصر» حکومت می‌کرده، و دوره ی حکومت «نفرتیتی با آخناتون» ثروتمندترین دوره ی تاریخ «مصر» بوده است؛ «نِفِرتیتی» همچنین در تاریخ «مصر» برای گردن کشیده و زیبایی اندام و نامدار است؛ «نفرتیتی» در طول زندگی خود شش دختر به دنیا آورد؛ «نفرتیتی» با القابی چون «شاهزاده میراث‌دار»، «بانوی شکوهمند»، «عشق شیرین»، «بانوی دو سرزمین»، همسر اصلی شاه نیز شناخته می‌شوند؛ ایشان یکی از توانمندترین زنان حاکم تاریخ «مصر» بوده، اما مومیایی او هرگز پیدا نشد؛ تندیس «نفرتیتی»، که سرشناس‌ترین تندیس پیونددار با «مصر باستان» است و در سال 1912میلادی در «مصر» کشف شد، در موزه ی «مصر شناسی برلین» نگاه‌داری می‌شود؛ در ماه مارس سال 2009میلادی با سی‌تی‌اسکن این تندیس، مشخص شد که یک مجسمه ی دیگر، در داخل آن قرار دارد که چهره «نفرتیتی» را به گونه ‌ای متفاوت، با جزئیات بیشتر و با زیبایی کمتری تجسم کرده ‌است؛ «لودویگ بورشارت»، مصرشناس مشهور «آلمانی» در حفاری‌های سال 1912یلادی، تندیس «نفرتیتی»، ملکه مصر باستان را یافت، و آن را به «آلمان» فرستاد؛ ادعای مالکیت بر مجسمهٔ نیم‌تنهٔ «نفرتیتی»، ستیزه ی همیشگی «مصر» و «آلمان» در اینباره بوده و هست

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 15/09/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 11/07/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Stephen.
1,516 reviews11.2k followers
June 9, 2011
UGH...PFFT...HEAD SHAKE and a wind-rustling SIGH about sums up my feelings for this MEHstorical bore festival. For this level of detail on life in ancient Egypt, I could have stuck with: Photobucket

*** By the way, for those taking a trip down Nostalgia Boulevard right now seeing Steve Martin’s SNL masterpiece, I have added the lyrics in a spoiler so that those who don’t care can skip over it…otherwise…enjoy…

a Condo made of stone-a …Classic!!

Anyway, I was very disappointed in this one, especially after seeing all kinds of rave poured on it from a gaggle of readers. Now, in Ms. Moran’s defense, the book is well written and I wouldn’t call it a hack job or an insult to people. There just wasn’t much “history” in this historical fiction.

When I read historical fiction, I generally want a good story set amidst a nice history lesson of the period. I was really looking forward to this book because I don't have a ton of knowledge on ancient Egypt (more like a few pounds of knowledge at best). I love really good stories that immerse you into a different historical period. Examples across several genre's that I thought did a great job of this are The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America (true crime) John Adams (historical biography)Dissolution(Historical Mystery) and The Alienist (detective/thriller).

I was hoping for something like that...Alas, not to be found here. I did learn that Nefertiti’s sister (who narrates the story) was named Mutnodjmet so a big yippie there. However...!!!

So rather than a fascinating trip to ancient Egypt and the time of the pharaohs, the story was more of a YA romantical drama that felt like a LONG episode of “The Real Housewives of Thebes”...but without the really cool, spicy catfights and dirt tossing. I suppose if you go into the story looking for that, you may not be disappointed. However, I found that even on the level of a YA romance, there wasn’t a whole lot compelling about the narrative. The characters were pretty non-dimensioned and I never really cared about anyone. So even as the dramatic events begin to unfold there was almost no tension in the read.

Overall, my CARE-O-METER was very low and it was a tough slog through 480 pages of "I really don't care and its taking too long." Therefore, while not horrible, I give this a rousing rating of 2.0 stars, a shrug and a MEH.
Profile Image for Debbie W..
758 reviews563 followers
May 6, 2021
Once again, I'm impressed with Michelle Moran's extensive research in her historical fiction novels; in this case, of ancient Egypt, with a specific focus on Queen of Egypt, Nefertiti. Although Nefertiti's image is widely known, there are still so many unknowns about her. Moran brings this woman to life as she writes this fictional account from the viewpoint of Nefertiti's younger sister, Mutnodjmet.

Some reasons why I enjoyed this story:
1. I learned about the intrigue, the deadly familial back-stabbing quests for power, the political unrest and the religious conflicts in Egypt while under the rule of Queen Nefertiti and her husband, Pharaoh Akhenaten;
2. Moran's descriptive writing made me feel like I was part of Egypt's natural surroundings along the Nile as well as the opulence of the temples, the palaces, the courtyards/gardens and the fashions; and,
3. I appreciated the inclusion of the 18th dynasty family tree and the 1351 BCE map of Egypt, both of which I referred to frequently.

Whenever a book intrigues me enough to have me researching its topic in greater detail, then it was worth the read! Highly recommended for historical fiction fans!
Profile Image for Annie.
Author 2 books104 followers
October 25, 2020
Diana Gabaldon tagged this debut novel 'Compulsively readable!' and she's not far off the mark. I'm sure I won't be the first blogger to draw this comparison but this book was like The Other Boleyn Girl - Egyptian style - and for three main reasons:

Firstly, thematically. For as much as this was a novel of sisters, it was a novel of rivals. Moran demonstrated unflinchingly the horrible acts women are capable of commiting to gain power over one another through Nefertiti and her dealings with Kiya (the Second Wife) and her sister Mutny. However Mutny is unable to abandon her sister, even as the throne of Egypt is crashing down around her. Through the relationship of the siblings, Moran shows that blood ties are stronger than the wounds we inflict on one another. These women are bound to each other ultimately, not by their rivalry, but by their love. It was this central idea that for me echoed Mary and Anne Boelyn.

Secondly, this book has been written with a conviction that can be rare in historicals of famous figures. Apart from Philippa Gregory, I haven't read another author who writes such vivid characters based on real people. After reading the author's notes, I was impressed at how much research Moran did so she could confidently draw her own conclusions on the character of Nefertiti and write a novel firmly grounded in historical fact. While she concedes that some Egyptologists may disagree with her interpretations, she hasn't allowed this to deter from the characters she's created. To me, this is brave storytelling.

Thirdly, it is written in first person through the eyes of the overlooked sister. As a reader, I think that was a smart move. Nefertiti, while fascinating, wasn't exactly likeable. Mutny however was completely relatable and I think had this been written through Nefertiti's eyes, readers would've had no one to have sympathy for.

Speaking of sympathy, as I often do when I'm finished a historical, I Googled the facts as soon as I was done. I must admit, I'm disappointed to know what came of Mutny after the pages of this book finished. I really liked her and I had hoped the Throne of Horus wouldn't come for her!

If, like me, Ancient Egypt has always called to you, then let it sweep you away into this book. I don't think you'll be disappointed. A very strong debut novel.

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Profile Image for Bren fall in love with the sea..
1,596 reviews289 followers
July 31, 2022
“You can't change the desert. You can only take the fastest course through it. Wishing it's an oasis won't make it so...”
― Michelle Moran, Nefertiti

This is the first book I have ever read about Nefertiti. It was a great read.

It takes the reader through Nefertiti's whole life.I did not know much about before reading this book. It was particularly wonderful at setting the mood and taking us inside her world.

I have read other books by this author and she is great at Historical Fiction. But I particularly enjoyed this one. I have always had an interest in Cleopatra but knew very little about Nefertiti. I learned so much.

For me, when reading any work of historical fiction, I need to feel like I'm there. Atmosphere is as important as good writing. Michelle Moran does both. I breezed through this book and really enjoyed it.

There is alot of tragedy but that I did know going in. It is also told through the eyes of Nefertiti's sister which some readers did not like but which I thought was fine.

I would give this 4.5 stars. This is a compelling work of Historical Fiction, written extremely well and I very much enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Anna.
60 reviews
August 8, 2007
Remind me next time I'm looking for a new book NOT to buy one that is advertised on! I should have known what I'd be getting myself into...

This was totally a summer beach read - although next time, I will wait for paperback (too heavy)! I felt like it was just ALL dialogue ALL the time - the author never went into too much detail in her description of places, people, etc (this reminds me of my high school English teachers constantly telling us to "show, not tell" in our writing). Overall, my opinion of it while reading it was "meh" - I was happy to pick it up when I had free time to read, but I wasn't drawn to it, by any means.

Also, the pharaoh was a total douchebag, to the point where his douchebaggery seemed way too over-the-top. Nefertiti was pretty obnoxious, as well, and in the same unrealistic, "overacted" way. Now that I think about it, MOST of the characters were not likeable or even remotely three-dimensional to me. This just made the book feel schlocky and dumb.
Profile Image for Susan.
114 reviews
September 7, 2008
I am a great fan of (well done) historical fiction - Gabaldon, Gulland and Koen all come instantly to mind - but this certainly doesn't come close to any of them. In fact, I never got beyond the first 50 or 60 pages. I've had a lifelong love affair with ancient Egypt, especially the Armana period, and I've never seen it depicted quite like this. Amunhotep (Ahknaten) was depicted as a headstrong, foolish kid,bad enough, but where oh where did she come up with her idea of Nefertiti's character? Vain, venal, power-hungry, obnoxious - would these 2 people actually usher in not only the first known monotheistic religion in the world. but also oversee the flowering of an artistic ethos that was radical in it's depiction of the everyday, firmly rooted in the natural world, and so startlingly lifelike that it's as fresh and modern today as it was four thousand years ago? I think not.
So, well researched or not, the author gets no kudos from me.
Profile Image for Nina Life of a Bookworm.
115 reviews131 followers
September 6, 2023
Ovako kvalitetna knjiga rijetko se nalazi! Možda je to moje mišljenje jer sam oduvijek pokazivala zanimanje za drevnim Egiptom, a ova mi je knjiga upravo dala ono što sam i željela. Ne znam, ali sa sigurnošću mogu reći da je knjiga čisto savršenstvo, po meni nema praznog hoda, svaki događaj je na svom mjestu i svaki je lik savršeno okarakteriziran.
Zanimljivo je čitati o stvarnim osobama koje su postojale gotovo 3000 godina unazad.
Nisam imala pojma da je Nefertiti bila toliko jaka žena sve dok nisam pročitala ovu knjigu. Tko zna, možda i nije, ali ova spisateljica učinila ju je jednom od najjačih žena u povijesti čovječanstva. Bila je svakakva, ponajprije pohlepna i željna svega, vrlo ambiciozna ... Bila sam vrlo sretna kada se pred kraj knjige vratila na pravi put, ali nikada nisam zamišljala takav kraj njenog života kakav je ona imala. Iskreno sam plakala na kraju knjige jer nešto takvo se dogodilo Nefertiti koja je tada živjela.
Ekhnaton, nekadašnji Amenothep... šteta što je od početka bio lud .. njemu je falilo manjka ljubavi u odgoju, čini se meni jer njegov je brat vjerojatno bio miljenik njegovih roditelja. Iako je zaslužio što mu se dogodilo ipak mi je malo žao jer nitko ne zaslužuje takvu sudbinu. ali onda se opet sjetim kakav je bio pa se počnem dvojiti.
Mutni, svjetlost ove knjige. Zbog nje sam najviše naplakala. Čak sam neko vrijeme mislila da neće naći sreću i mir, no na kraju joj se svaka patnja pretvorila u sreću. Predivan lik, fenomenalno okarakteriziran!
Knjiga je stvarno savršena! Ne mogu vjerovati da se nešto takvo stvarno i dogodilo! Čisto savršenstvo, svakako preporučujem!
Profile Image for Patrícia.
988 reviews100 followers
January 20, 2010
This book was rather disappointing.

The story of Nefertiti and Akhenaton, two of Ancient Egypt's most emblematic leaders was always one of my favorites. Perhaps because of this, I had very high expectations for this book... and in the end, they weren't met.

According to several summaries I've read about this book, "Nefertiti" tells the story of the Royal (or First) Wife of Pharaoh Akhenaton and it's also somewhat biographic. I was always a little dubius about the "biographic nature" of the book, as I don't see how the author could have amassed so much information about Nefertiti. It's impossible to write a fair biography of ancient people.

Still, even prepared for a work of fiction and little else, I was disappointed. "Nefertiti" has a lot of historical inaccuracies and even some false information about the society of Ancient Egypt. Sometimes I even though I was reading about Medieval Europe.

Another thing that annoyed me were the characters. Moran portrays Akhenaton as a violent, insecure and ultimately dumb man. It is clear the author comdemns the Pharaoh's religious vision; her view on the matter shouldn't have been perceptible in a work of fiction such as this.
Nefertiti, too, is little more than a spoiled brat throughout most of the book. I have a hard time believing that any ruler could (or would be allowed) to behave in such a manner.

It is clear that the author lacks the compreension about the society of Ancient Egypt... because she managed to make it seem like another time period altogether even after doing research. As such, this book is to be taken lightly; it's hardly an historical novel.
Profile Image for Maureen.
346 reviews83 followers
January 13, 2020
This is the first book I have read by Michelle Moran. I knew very little about Queen Nefertiti before reading this book. I have learned a wealth of information from it.
Michelle has written a very interesting portrayal of Nefertiti. It is told in the voice of Mutnodjmet, her sister. It is the story of sisters and family obligations.
This tale begins when Tutmosis the crown prince is lying in his death bed and his brother Akhenaten is the only witness to his death. There is much speculation and mystery about this.
Nefertiti is 15 years of age and her sister is 13. Nefertiti is chosen to become the Pharaoh’s Chief wife as he is already married to Princess Kira who is pregnant with his child. How will this all turn out?
We learn about Nefertiti’s life and powerful struggles and aspirations in this wonderful novel.
It is very will written and historically researched, even though little is known of this era. Michelle Moran explains at the end which facts are true and which events she has stretched her imagination.
I think anyone who likes historical fiction will like this book.
Profile Image for Ivana Books Are Magic.
523 reviews201 followers
November 16, 2019
This is exactly the kind of historical fiction that I dislike: the kind where the writer thinks choosing an exotic character will sell the book for him/her and any writing effort is optional. So even if I ignore the fact that this novel pays attention to history and culture as much as an average Hollywood blockbuster (meaning not at all), I cannot ignore the fact that the story itself is not very good. It was boring to read, more than a little naive and the characters weren't appealing either. In a film, you at least have visual means to entertain your audience and hide any plot deficiencies. In a novel, it all comes to writing. If the plot is not well written or developed and the writing is not successful- well, then it's not a very good novel. Add stereotypes and cardboard characters to the mix and you end up with a disaster. I can believe that the author tried and researched, I'm not going to claim that she didn't put any effort into this. Perhaps what's missing is just writing talent or experience. Not that should be any excuse. We might just as well hand out the following instruction to aspiring writers and publishers: 'How to take a famous historical characters and get away with lazy writing.'

I can't help but to think to myself: 'Nefertiti, you deserved better than this!' Personally, I don't like the fact that Nefertiti is portrayed as a spoiled brat. She always seemed sophisticated to me-or rather her image as portrayed in art. Well, imagination is a personal thing. Everyone can see the past differently. I could have accepted Nefertiti as a villain only if she had been better written. None of the characters in this book are well developed and I guess that is what really bothers me. Everyone is entitled to their own version of history. Not every historical fiction needs to be historically accurate. Nevertheless, one should give his vision to a good editor if one is going to publish his book- or at least read it a few times. This book is filled with illogical plot twists and moralizing. I'm not saying that the author didn't try to breathe life in this story, there are even a few really good lines in this book. However, for a novel this long, one expects more.

This is one of those books that have not lived up to its potential mostly because they are not well developed. Even if I ignore the fact that the story does not sound plausible historically, I cannot ignore the fact that it has its weaknesses, a fair share of them actually. I don't expect it to be a historical book, it's after all fiction but many things just don't sound right. It’s not the best fiction as fiction goes and as historical fiction goes- it just doesn't work.

Here are my main issues with this book:

1. The novel does not have a feeling of a time different from our own. The cultural undertones in it are for most parts the modern western culture. The historical facts and information that are in the novel are not woven into story in a natural and effortless way (like in some other historical fictions). I had a feeling they are there just to be there. There was some progress made into this direction. Regrettably, it was towards the end of the novel. Again, I did not expect the novel to feel really authentic, but I did expect it to pay more attention to the way things might have been. Perhaps we cannot reconstruct a culture so far away in time, but you can accomplish portraying a culture that feels a bit different. I mean you can, if you can write.

2. There is no attention to detail. Who edited this book? (How can a woman be pregnant for two years?) The characterization is not consistent, nor is the story itself. Can Nefertiti influence her husband or not? I doubt even author knew answers to some of the questions that appear as you read. If you are to keep your characters mysterious, you have to add some dept to them. One more thing that comes to my mind: you can not heal seriously ill people with mint tea. This book desperately needed good editing. There’s no time now. That's too bad, because it could have been much better.

3. Do all the characters have to be so one-dimensional, so that a protagonist can be more sympathetic? The author did try to add some dept to them as the novel progresses but it was not really successful. Again, there is no attention to details. Sentimentality that appears occasionally does not help, rather just the opposite.

4. The sort of action that can make you turn pages with interest begins at the end or towards the end- It was about page 300 that I began to be interested. That may not be the case with everybody, but really for me only half of the novel is any good. By any good I mean interesting, not even particularly good literature.

My recommendation is- read this book if you have nothing better to read or do. It could be a decent read if you're type that doesn't pay great attention to detail when you read. You might like it if you don't know much about history or don't care about characters development. I can imagine someone liking it, but not very much. Honestly, this book didn't appeal to me at all. I remember Nefertiti as a shallow and illogical novel. I have no desire to reread it. One star.
Profile Image for Aliza.
538 reviews48 followers
December 21, 2016

This particular historical fiction book reminded me a lot of what occurred in the lives of sisters Anne and Mary Boleyn in Philippa Gregory's book, The Other Boleyn Girl, except with an Egyptian twist. It's easy to picture 1351 BC from Moran's vivid descriptions and use of various Egyptian words. This is Moran's version of Nefertiti's tale, told through the eyes of her younger sister, Mutnodjmet. For the most part, everything that occurs regarding Nefertiti is assumed. She may have been crowned Pharaoh, she may not have been. She may have died of plague, she may have been murdered. I wish there was more concrete information about her but Moran did an excellent job taking the knowledge we do have and spinning a captivating tale out of it. I may just pick up another of her historical fiction books because, for my part, I'm always more interested in how historical figures lived rather than in what they did.

Profile Image for Melanie.
279 reviews133 followers
April 21, 2019
Three stars for me, but only because of the second half of the book. I knew nothing of Queen Nefertiti prior to reading this. Her rise to power in Egypt is quite interesting. Along with her husband, Pharaoh Akhenaten, they created religious upheaval in Egypt by worshiping the god Aten. It would be really interesting to read some non-fiction regarding her. The parts of the story dealing with Nefertiti's sister Mutnodjmet I really enjoyed. This book leans a bit chick lit but I didn't mind too much.
Profile Image for Maja  - BibliophiliaDK ✨.
1,097 reviews673 followers
July 13, 2010
From page one I was sold - same as with Michelle Moran's two other books. She just has a way of drawing in the reader and keeping their focus from the first page to the ver last. And not just that, with her great, historical novels about Ancient Egypt she again arises awareness of the once so great and mighty Empire. I found myself Google-ing all of the characters in this book, and the two others, to learn more about them all.

'Nefertiti' is not a book easil forgotten. And to me, that is the ultimate mark of a great, favourite book.
Profile Image for Melissa Veras.
532 reviews206 followers
May 30, 2015
#29: A book set somewhere you've always wanted to visit.

This. Was. Amazing.

Nunca, nunca pensé que esta historia me iba a gustar TANTO. Siempre me ha encantado la historia del Antiguo Egipto, y si bien este no es un libro de historia, sino un ficción histórica, me encantó de principio a fin.

Debo decir que este libro no fue lo que me esperaba, empezando porque está narrado desde el punto de vista de la hermana de Nefertiti, no de Nefertiti misma. Cuenta la historia a partir de que Nefertiti se casa con el príncipe heredero; y de ahí vamos viendo todos los malabares políticos que se mueven en el palacio con tal de ganar poder y el favor del Faraón. Ambas hermanas son muy pequeñas (13 la hermana de Nefertiti, y 15 Nefertiti), pero recordemos que en el Antiguo Egipto esa edad era la suficiente para casarse. Vemos como ambas hermanas van perdiendo poco a poco el pequeño rastro de niñez que podía quedarles cuando se ven envueltas en las manipulaciones, mentiras y traiciones del palacio y todo lo que envuelve la política egipcia de aquella época.

Este libro me encantó demasiado. No me acuerdo la última vez que duré un día entero leyendo (tengo 24 horas sin dormir Y NO ME ARREPIENTO DE NADA), pero es que no podía dormir sin finalizarlo. Y pensar que desde hace tiempo tengo ese libro en mi librero, esperándome nomás... GOSH.

Por cierto, he visto muchas críticas de este libro acerca de las inexactitudes históricas... y chicos, vamos, este libro es de ficción. Si quieren aprender de la historia del Antiguo Egipto lean un libro de historia o vean un documental (cosa que de verdad recomiendo que hagan, porque la historia del Antiguo Egipto es fascinante).
Profile Image for Iset.
665 reviews490 followers
March 10, 2015
The plot revolves around the lives of two sisters, Nefertiti and Mutnodjmet. Since it is written in first person perspective from the point of view of Mutnodjmet, she is the protagonist and narrator, although in the setting in which she moves, Nefertiti is the focus of everyone's attention and the action of the story. Most of the plot revolves around Nefertiti's scheming to hold onto her position and gain further power, and Mutnodjmet's struggle to break free from her sister's influence. There are one or two plot twists... but they come at the expense of sacrificing historical accuracy for the surprise factor.

The writing felt very linear, very simplistic, and definitely could have benefitted from a couple of sub-plots and a more subtle interweaving of various strands. The language was rather basic, and there wasn't too much imagery apart from a very frequently repeated comparison of Mutnodjmet to a cat, because of her green eyes. The story focuses character development and dialogue between characters, but regrettably the actual dialogue was very forced and stilted and didn't flow like a real conversation, and the quality of portrayal of the characters is debatable. As a reader I was given the sense that the characters did have backgrounds, but these were never really explored at all in the story, at best they were referenced once or twice but no more, and certainly never exposed or fully explored. The characters didn't feel fully formed, and lacked a certain subtlety and complexity of personality. The pathos just wasn't there - it's not always understandable why a character makes the decisions they do, a good author will weave the pathos so well that the readers can understand the reasoning even of loathsome characters, but here in this book the characters sometimes make decisions that we can't follow, and we're just supposed to accept that they made the decision because they're a bad character and that's what they do.

I also did not get the sense that the characters grow over the course of the book; they stay pretty much the same throughout. Nefertiti does change her approach and reconcile to different policies in her governing of Egypt once her husband has been killed, but one doesn't get the feeling that she has been significantly affected by the disastrous events that have happened to her, that she feels regret or remorse or desperation, for example. As Akhenaten's queen, she acts simply as she wishes to increase her own power and securing his rule and Aten worship is the most expedient way of achieving it at the time; as ruler of Egypt in her own right she returns to the worship of Amun and condemns without emotion her late husband's heresy, and again it seems as though this is simple expediency; she is still trying to hold onto power by the most expedient means, she just doesn't care whether it's through one set of policies or another. I personally do not feel that the portrayal of the characters in this novel is true to their real life historical counterparts - the emotions just never seem to run to extremes, and neither does the plot really, whereas I feel that the real life people would have had a much bigger emotional stake in these earth-shattering events and a much stronger commitment and faith in their own personal choices.

Mutnodjmet is the protagonist, and yet she was bland and forgettable. She didn't really seem to have a character, and her only memorable trait was her knowledge of herbal remedies. I didn't buy her romance with Nakhtmin at all; instead of developing the initial intrigue in a natural way, their relationship suddenly jumps from the barest hint of interest on the general's part, to Mutnodjmet agreeing to a union and expecting a baby. She wasn't very fleshed out at all, and did not have much of a personality. Nakhtmin is dangerously close to becoming a stock designated love interest, i.e. not having any flaws, anything negative said about him is a lie, he doesn't really have any life of his own, and he serves as a reward for Mutnodjmet's character for all her years of service to Nefertiti. It is often mentioned that Ay, the father of the sisters, is the power behind the throne, but we never see scenes showing this, and why then does Egypt fall apart so badly if Ay is mostly in control of things? Moran, by saying that Ay deals with most government affairs, shoots herself in the foot really, because we must then put the disasters of governance down to Ay's incompetence. Likewise, we are told that Horemheb is military minded, ambitious, and not to be crossed. And yet his character does nothing in the book; he is betrayed, exiled, and imprisoned by Akhenaten and Nefertiti, and yet if his personality is as volatile as Mutnodjmet observes, why does he not then lash out in retribution? Yet when Nefertiti has need of his services, he is willing to obey at the drop of a hat.

Nefertiti is probably the character I'm most disappointed in as a portrayal. I just don't find her terribly plausible. It's clear from the beginning that she is selfish, lazy, and ambitious, as well as possessive, but she's portrayed as being essentially good despite these character faults - we are told that all her actions in backing up Akhenaten's policies are for the greater good - she does it so that she can retain her favour with Akhenaten and influence towards him towards better policies, which she only does a handful of times towards the end of the book when disaster strikes the royal city anyway! I don't believe that the historical Nefertiti, who was so deeply involved in her husband's schemes, could have taken the actions she did or have been a party to them without a serious belief and faith in Akhenaten's Aten worship and policies, perhaps naively and genuinely, or perhaps cruelly and deliberately. Akhenaten, the heretical pharaoh himself, is presented in a slightly odd way. If ever there were a man in history whose workings of the mind were a mysterious fascination, it's Akhenaten. It is obvious that here was a very highly complex and difficult to understand person, to some degree unfathomable. Moran's Akhenaten is very thinly sketched, and totally unsympathetic. His motivations are entirely hidden, and he basically just acts like a petulant child, making irrational and unexplained illogical decisions just because. I had no sympathy with the character at all, didn't really care when he died, and never understood why he did any of the things he did. This was a pale shadow of other historical fiction portrayals of Akhenaten, such as Pauline Gedge's Twelfth Transforming in which the Pharaoh is fascinating yet terrible.

As for the historical accuracy, as a qualified Egyptologist I can tell you that it wasn't great. I won't list all the errors here, but I will cover a handful of points. I didn't like the way Moran used the modern names of the cities instead of the ancient ones (it just sounds so incongruous to have characters talking about "Thebes" and "Amarna" when we know the Egyptians would have called those cities "Waset" and "Akhetaten"), and she condensed Nefertiti's final two pregnancies into one by having her give birth to twin girls. I was partially placated by the afterword in which Moran admits that Nefertiti never had twin girls, but she doesn't tell us why she did this. Perhaps she wrote the final two pregnancies into a twin birth because she felt it would get boring if Nefertiti had to go through six births of girls in the book. Moran goes on to say that other events are open to interpretation and that in those cases she has presented what she feels is the most probable version, for example, the question marks over whether Akhenaten ever shared a co-regency with his father, or whether Nefertiti ever reigned alone. Moran decides that both did occur, but I am afraid I must disagree with her interpretations here and it is my professional opinion that neither is the most probable interpretation. Certainly, we can't say definitively that Nefertiti was the same person as Smenkhare until we find the material evidence that proves this. If we're going to be picky, Mutnodjmet, the queen of Pharaoh Horemheb, may not have even been the same person as Nefertiti's sister - whose name was actually Mutbenret - there's certainly no evidence for it, other than their names are spelt similarly in hieroglyphs.

I am really hoping that Moran can improve her storytelling, as she's chosen an interesting period of ancient Egyptian history to write about, but it just didn't hit the mark for me due to the poor writing quality. Too often, Moran tells instead of shows, and towards the end of the novel it felt like the characters were swept along on the tide of events instead of reaching a logical conclusion. I'd also like to see her flesh out her characters more and not shy away from giving her readers a complex plot.

2 out of 10
Profile Image for Alaine.
291 reviews90 followers
February 17, 2009
What I found to be fascinating about this book is that compared to other periods in history i.e. Tudor England, very little is known about it. Michelle Moran has woven an interesting and credible tale. What an amazing imagination she has!
This story is told in first person by Mutny, Nefertiti's younger sister. As a character Nefertiti has been portrayed as a beautiful and passionate woman, who will go to any lengths to get what she wants. There are many characters in this novel and I must confess I had trouble keeping up with who was who at times. Mutny's character is amazing and she certainly suffers at the hands of her family. While she is loyal to Nefertiti she also exhibits a strong will of her own that ultimately ensures her survival.
I studied Ancient Egypt in depth when I was younger and have read several novels set in this time period. Although none could compare with the details and complexity of the characters in this book. I think Michelle did a wonderful job of bringing this time to life with an incredibly well researched story. There is an afterword in the back of the book that tells you exactly what is understood to be fact and what liberties the author has taken. To me this is always a sign of a great historical author. I like to know the fact from the fiction and often read this before I start the book.
I gave this book 4 stars because I thought the first half of the novel dragged a little. I'd recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in Egyptian history.
Profile Image for Lizzy.
305 reviews166 followers
February 8, 2017
An enjoyable historical fiction about the ambitious Nefertiti, who married the heir and future pharaoh Akhenaton. Much is obscure about that period of Egypt's history, so Michelle Moran's creativity comes forth in Nefertiti as she pictures a time of political intrigue, the building of a new city, art flourishing to all end up with a spectacular downfall. An interesting and absorbing historical fiction that provides a window into the sophisticated lifestyle back in 1300 B.C.
Profile Image for Parisa.
28 reviews19 followers
November 28, 2019
از داستانهای ملکه های مصری و سیاست هاشون خوشم میاد، اینکه چقدر خرافاتی بودن برام جالبه و متاسفانه خیلی از این خرافات هنوزم وجود داره...
Profile Image for Quandra Chaffers.
9 reviews1 follower
December 25, 2008
The cover art lied to me. The beautiful portrait on the front suggested to me that someone took a look at the real life bust of the queen revered for her beauty and finally decided to write a story about black Egyptian royalty. If we're not talking about the Helenistic dynasty (the line of Cleopatras and Ptolenmys) I don't want to hear about them being white. And even then, because of Alexander the Great's conquest of Egypt, Cleopatra came from a long line of inbred Greeks and Macedonians. Yet, Moran has characters who are inexplicably blue eyed, red-headed before there is any influence from the countries that would become Europe.

All the same, for a first novel it wasn't bad. It follows Mutnodjmet the sister to Nefertiti. Our narrator-protagonist comes from a family that has long sense given daughters to kings of Egypt for marriage. She is kind and honest individual who has a talent for gardening and an intellect for medical herbs. Easy to feel for we watch as her sister's selfishness take her further and further away from the things she wants- a peaceful life and a family of her own. At times it was very suspenseful especially when the court politics explode in standoffs against the paranoid and ruthless Pharoah Akhenaten. But the story misses opportunities for gripping battles and some characters that could have been actual threats fizzle away without much mention. Also, I never felt I really got to understand why Nefertiti was great enough to deserve to be the titular character; it would have been nice to see how she redeems herself. However, from the start, she is clearly cunning, bright, and there are many surprising moments of how she slowly steals the affection of the king away from his first wife and eventually becomes co-reagent. It does paint the palace life very well, but I wish I would have seen more of what the village life in Egypt was like. You do not get much sense of the people's unrest with the current rule, you just keep hearing about it.

Overall, the payoff is tremendous, and the major character wrap up nicely. I would recommend it. It sticks fairly close to Historical accuracy... if you can imagine all the character with color. LOL.
Profile Image for Lau .
659 reviews127 followers
August 31, 2019

Se sabe muy poco sobre la verdadera historia de Nefertiti y su familia, hay mucha especulación y muchas versiones diferentes, por eso el trabajo de la autora rellenando los huecos vacíos me pareció muy bueno. Todo lo que es parte de la ficción tiene sentido y está enlazado de forma coherente y razonable. Hace sentir que los agregados importantes perfectamente podrían haber sido así como se cuentan.

El libro está narrado en primera persona pero no tiene como protagonista a Nefertiti, como esperaba que fuera. Quien nos cuenta lo que ocurre es Mut-Najmat (o Mutni), su medio-hermana menor. Vemos a través de sus ojos la ascensión al trono de Nefertiti luego de casarse con el faraón Amenhotep, matrimonio que esperaba desde su nacimiento por tradición familiar.

El amor que sienten las dos hermanas la una por la otra es inmenso, y Mutni no tiene ningún problema en vivir a la sombra de Nefertiti. No se siente celosa ni menospreciada sino todo lo contrario, ya que ella no desea para sí el tipo de vida que lleva su hermana como reina de Egipto. Mutni es su mayor confidente, y por eso se vuelve una de las mujeres más poderosas y respetadas a pesar de su corta edad.

Nefertiti, además de hermosa, es ambiciosa y muy astuta. Junto a su padre idean constantemente formas de mantener al pueblo a sus pies y al faraón interesado en ella, dándole gradualmente mayor poder a su familia.
Amenhotep por otro lado no está realmente en sus cabales. Nefertiti se encarga de alimentar y apoyar sus proyectos delirantes y verdaderamente faraónicos, entre los que se incluye cambiar el sistema religioso que Egipto abrazó durante 2.000 años para adorar a un único dios: Atón.
No pude dejar de encontrar un cierto paralelismo histórico con el rey Enrique VIII de Inglaterra.

Amenhotep, luego llamado Akenatón, está obnubilado con Nefertiti, a quien convierte en esposa principal. De todos modos el gran temor de la reina es que el faraón pierda su interés por ella y luego ser superada por la otra esposa, con quien tiene una rivalidad constante por la atención y por darle un hijo varón a Akenatón.
La historia de Mutni también es muy interesante. Ella intenta llevar una vida tranquila a pesar de vivir en el palacio. Es muy hábil con las plantas, por lo que pronto se hace una reputación de curandera que la lleva a tener gran popularidad. No pude dejar de sentir expectativa por ver si en algún momento la dulce hermana menor finalmente se cansa de estar siempre a orden y disposición de la caprichosa y nerviosa reina. Hay ciertos momentos de mucha tensión que se devoran.

Los momentos claves de la historia verdadera están muy bien hechos. A veces incluso resumidos en una simple línea de diálogo, como lo es por ejemplo el nacimiento de quien luego sería llamado Tutankamón.
Me gusta también que se narró el momento en que se realiza el famosísimo busto de Nefertiti, aquel que ha hipnotizado a multitudes por su belleza:

Se lee muy fácilmente, aunque durante muchas páginas me dio la sensación de que algo le faltaba. Luego me di cuenta de que no le falta nada. Durante toda la adolescencia de las dos hermanas el libro tiene una mirada un bastante juvenil y centrada en los embarazos de Nefertiti, pero con el correr de los años se vuelve mucho más madura, dura y seria mientras las hermanas se convierten en adultas. Este cambio se evidencia especialmente en Mut-Najmat, quien a pesar de ser la menor, crece mucho más rápido que Nefertiti. La reina conserva durante muchos años su temperamento aniñado y caprichoso, viviendo en su propio mundo, ajena a casi todo salvo a sus propios deseos y a los de su esposo, llenos de vanidad y egocentrismo.

No puedo dejar de preguntarme... ¿habrán sido así sus personalidades en la realidad?.
Es un libro más que interesante, con un descenlace impactante.

Reseña de Libros junto al mar
Profile Image for Caitlin.
304 reviews21 followers
September 26, 2015
Wow. Wow. Wow.
Why have I waited so long to read this book? No need for a lengthy review. I don't have anything to say that isn't already said in the thousands of reviews this book has. I devoured this book in about 24 hours. It was addicting.
Profile Image for Shannon .
1,221 reviews2,213 followers
May 22, 2009
Egypt, 1351 BCE. Fifteen year old Nefertiti and her thirteen year old sister, Mutnodjmet, are the daughters and only children of the Vizier Ay, brother to the Queen of Egypt, Tiye. The prince of Egypt and Pharaoh's heir, Tuthmosis, is dead - possibly murdered by his younger and much less liked brother, Amunhotep. With no other heir, Amunhotep is made Crown Prince and Tiye goes to her brother's family for a Chief Wife for him: Nefertiti. Both Ay and Tiye need Nefertiti to control Amunhotep, who talks wildly of worshipping Aten, the Sun, over all other gods, and has grandiose and impractical dreams.

But Nefertiti is far from secure in her position as Chief Wife. Amunhotep's first wife, Kiya, has given him a son, and Nefertiti exerts all her cunning to keep her upper hand - which of necessity involves aiding Amunhotep in his wild schemes. Becoming king of Lower Egypt, he uses the army to strip Amun's temples and high priests of all their gold and treasures, forces them to convert to the worship of Aten, and as soon as his father dies and he becomes Pharaoh of all Egypt, uses the army to build a brand new city in the desert to worship the sun.

The Hittites are encroaching on Egyptian territory; Amunhotep - who becomes Akhenaten - becomes more and more paranoid and obsessive; and Kiya's father, the Vizier and now High Priest of Aten, Panahesi, scheming to raise his family higher. Nefertiti, her father and the dowager queen Tiye are entirely occupied with politics and placating Akhenaten, who refuses to send troops to protect Egypt's borders. Akhenaten and Nefertiti's ambitions raise them to god status, as their statues and likenesses decorate temples and buildings like no rulers before, and Akhenaten becomes more and more unstable.

Caught between them all is Nefertiti's sister Mutny, torn between sisterly love and a yearning for her own life free of the palace and its dangers. Everything reaches boiling point when Akhenaten does something incredibly stupid, and Egypt itself teeters on the brink of ruin.

I was surprised to find that Mutny narrates this tale, since it is titled "Nefertiti", but it was a good move on Moran's part - Mutny is a quiet, in-the-background character but she is a much more sympathetic character, has a wiser perspective because she's not blinded by Nefertiti's ambition and power, and is much more relatable because she's more humble. Nefertiti, as presented in this book anyway, is too lofty a personage to get inside her head.

Where this novel works is with Mutnodjmet and her love for General Nakhtmin, her observations and conscience. She's knowable and likeable for all that she's coming from a drastically different culture.

As a window into Egyptian culture in the 14th century BCE, it also works quite well, but it never feels truly authentic. There's a modern touch at work, coming through in Moran's prose, that makes it read more like a fantasy book set in a "different" world, than a work of historical fiction. Since there's not a whole lot to go on, research-wise, Moran has done well to reconstruct the world and its people, but not being an Egyptian history scholar at all, I can't vouch for its accuracy and there are probably better books in this regard.

While I did like the book, I also found it hard to get into at times. I had to force myself to sit down and finish it, and this comes down mostly to the style of prose - it's simple, it's readable, it's perfectly fine, but there was too much distance between me and the narrator. The author never really immersed herself deeply enough, leaving the book to skim the surface of an arresting tale. It's hard to pinpoint it any better than that. The characters were no more familiar, understandable or knowable by the end than they were at the beginning. It was a tantalising taste, but I wanted the entire dish.
Profile Image for Trupti Dorge.
352 reviews28 followers
August 11, 2011
It’s 1351 BCE. Tuthmosis, the older brother of Amunhotep is dead and the wise men of Egypt have concluded that Amunhotep has killed his brother for power, to become the pharaoh.

And as the author Michelle Moran puts it
Whatever the truth, that night the crown prince, Tuthmosis, dies, and a new crown prince rose to take his place.

Thus begins the story of greed, unlimited power, dirty politics and one family’s journey into royalty.Nefertiti is chosen by Amunhotep’s mother and her aunt as his wife and the chief Queen. Nefertiti’s entire family has to move to the palace when she gets married. Her father is a vizier to the pharaoh, so we get to know both sides of politics.

Nefertiti is very ambitious and is ready to assist the pharaoh in his heretic ambitious. But the pharaohs’ plans are way ahead of anything anyone could ever imagine. He wants to forsake Egypt’s ancient God Amun and give its place to a smaller god Aten. He destroys all the temples built for Amun and forbids his people from worshipping him. He builds an entirely new city called Amarna and glorifies himself and his queen Nefertiti by carving their statues and painting their faces everywhere.

Nefertiti does not stop Amunhotep because she realizes that it was the only opportunity to make herself immortal and be remembered through centuries. Like the pharaoh, she turns a blind eye on the political unrest, encroaching enemies and devotes herself entirely to the pharaoh and her ambitions.

This is not Nefertiti’s story alone. It is the story of her sister Mutnodjmet (Mutny) too . In fact I was surprised to find that the narrator is Mutny. She is the exact opposite of Nefertiti. Where Nefertiti wants power, Mutny wants a quiet life in one of the villages, away from all the politics. But for the sake of her sister and her family she becomes Nefertiti’s handmaiden.

There is so much to write about this book and the characters, but I don’t want to spoil the book for those who haven’t read it. The story and the backdrop are interesting; yes, but what brings life to the story are the characters. I loved how author Michelle Moran has constructed a story around an era which is still not entirely explored. Weaving a story around a civilization and characters as ancient as these, must have required a lot of research.

Nefertiti is a good thriller and a good story which kept me up late turning the pages.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Originally reviewed on
Profile Image for Esteph.
166 reviews16 followers
February 21, 2017
Bingo y reto de lectura Amor y Letras 2017: 25. Historia/mitología egipcia

Es un libro muy adictivo, lo disfruté bastante. Me agradó conocer un poco más acerca de la cultura egipcia y más que nada sobre Nefertiti. Aunque indudablemente me conecté más con Mut-Najmat. Le grité al libro en incontables ocasiones también me sorprendió en muchas otras.

En algún momento me sentí un poco en shock por todo lo descrito, pero entiendo que el libro es inspirado en la historia, todo lo sucedido de una manera u otra sigue las pautas de la historia real.

Recomendado para todo aquél que se sienta atraído por la historia de Nefertiti, el libro es tan cautivante que toda esa cantidad de páginas pasan volando.
Profile Image for Heidi.
1,234 reviews144 followers
November 23, 2021
I'd file this under "historical fiction light," not unlike The Boleyn Girl or similar novels.

Overall, I thought it was an impressive first book by a new author, however, at times it didn't seem to have a plot line, rather it pulled together different incidents... sometimes you'd get a daily blow by blow and then other times, six months had gone by.

I couldn't help comparing it to the Cleopatra book by Margaret George-- and this wasn't anywhere close to the same kind of detail, hence the three stars.
Profile Image for Alexandra Alexyna.
399 reviews22 followers
January 2, 2022
Cred că e a 4-a oară când citesc aceasta carte și nu o pot lăsa din mână . Stilul oarecum alert creează dependenta și apreciez faptul că e una din puținele cărți de ficțiune istorică ce îl mentioneaza pe Smenkare . Pasionata de istoria Egiptului antic am dat de acest faraon în câteva cărți de istorie propriu-zisa
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