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The Murder of King Tut: The Plot to Kill the Child King - A Nonfiction Thriller

Average Rating 3.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

KING TUT CONSPIRACY READS LIKE A NOVEL

With the hugely successful and amazing non-fiction book, AGAINST MEDICAL ADVICE in 2008,Patterson showed another side to his mystery writing. Patterson co-authors with Martin Dugard and they present their theory of how Tut, so often known as "the boy king", died and why...
With the hugely successful and amazing non-fiction book, AGAINST MEDICAL ADVICE in 2008,Patterson showed another side to his mystery writing. Patterson co-authors with Martin Dugard and they present their theory of how Tut, so often known as "the boy king", died and why.
James Patterson writes in the prologue how important research is in ANY kind of book that is written. Martin Dugard makes the trips to London, to Egypt, and to Tut's tomb, while Patterson concentrates more on the books and online references and data in order to get the historical background correct.
The book is cleverly and yet cohesively divided into three time periods and goes back and forth between the three, and even includes maps to help visualize locations.
Present day is one of the time periods and is where Patterson explains how he got the idea to do this book. Their details enabled me to get a mental image of the pyramids, the time periods, and most of all, brought about in me a sympathy for young King Tut. In the end, Patterson does give his idea of what actually happened to the young king.
The second time period is from 1891 to 1939 and takes place initially in London and moves on to Egypt. This part is the amazing story of Howard Carter and how he started out as a sketch artist in London getting paid to sketch people's pets and was then hired to be a sketch artist on an expedition to Egypt. Howard Carter is one of the most famous Egyptologists of the 20th century and the way he started out, with a fascination for Egypt and his drawing skills to become who he was, is so interesting and reads like a really good novel. He spent years excavating tombs in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt until he "struck gold" in November of 1922.It was then that Carter found King Tutankhamen's burial site.
The third and oldest time period of the book is 1492 BC to 1319 BC where we meet young Tutankhamen. This part amazed me as it described how the city of Armana had been built by Pharaoh Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti. Their relationship was detailed down to how the Pharaoh was dying from sand that was eating away the enamel in his teeth allowing disease and decay to poison his body. I had never heard of such a thing but it certainly makes sense.
This oldest part also told how and why Tut married his half sister as well as told how and why the tomb was so hard to find. There seemed to be some reason for people to want to totally erase everything there was about King Tut. He was just beginning to acquire the skill he needed to lead when he died, very mysteriously during the night. After Nefertiti (who was Tut's stepmother) and Tut died, Armana was destroyed by one of the people involved in Tut's murder, if you are to believe the conspiracy, and that seemed such a waste.
The way that Patterson weaves these three parts together was very well done and I found myself thinking I really was just reading a really good mystery. The research that Dugard did is a huge part of what makes this a successful story. Even if you aren't an expert about this subject, and I am not, you have to have that research to make it feasible. AND, if you don't have a master storyteller like Patterson to add his research and then his writing skills to put the pieces together fluently and fabulously, then you wouldn't have THE MURDER OF KING TUT-and a really, very good book. I found this to be a great end of the summer read!(Review by Karen Haney, edited to meet size requirements)

posted by kanellio65 on September 3, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Very Disappointing

James Patterson tried to draw readers into the story with an introduction that detailed his fascination with the death of King Tut. That's truly where the drama ended. By the conclusion of the book, I was asking why it had been written. Patterson talks about all of t...
James Patterson tried to draw readers into the story with an introduction that detailed his fascination with the death of King Tut. That's truly where the drama ended. By the conclusion of the book, I was asking why it had been written. Patterson talks about all of the projects he has going on at any given time. I think he should focus on a few good books rather than hordes of mediocre ones.

posted by 2020002 on October 6, 2009

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  • Posted September 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    KING TUT CONSPIRACY READS LIKE A NOVEL

    With the hugely successful and amazing non-fiction book, AGAINST MEDICAL ADVICE in 2008,Patterson showed another side to his mystery writing. Patterson co-authors with Martin Dugard and they present their theory of how Tut, so often known as "the boy king", died and why.
    James Patterson writes in the prologue how important research is in ANY kind of book that is written. Martin Dugard makes the trips to London, to Egypt, and to Tut's tomb, while Patterson concentrates more on the books and online references and data in order to get the historical background correct.
    The book is cleverly and yet cohesively divided into three time periods and goes back and forth between the three, and even includes maps to help visualize locations.
    Present day is one of the time periods and is where Patterson explains how he got the idea to do this book. Their details enabled me to get a mental image of the pyramids, the time periods, and most of all, brought about in me a sympathy for young King Tut. In the end, Patterson does give his idea of what actually happened to the young king.
    The second time period is from 1891 to 1939 and takes place initially in London and moves on to Egypt. This part is the amazing story of Howard Carter and how he started out as a sketch artist in London getting paid to sketch people's pets and was then hired to be a sketch artist on an expedition to Egypt. Howard Carter is one of the most famous Egyptologists of the 20th century and the way he started out, with a fascination for Egypt and his drawing skills to become who he was, is so interesting and reads like a really good novel. He spent years excavating tombs in the Valley of the Kings in Egypt until he "struck gold" in November of 1922.It was then that Carter found King Tutankhamen's burial site.
    The third and oldest time period of the book is 1492 BC to 1319 BC where we meet young Tutankhamen. This part amazed me as it described how the city of Armana had been built by Pharaoh Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti. Their relationship was detailed down to how the Pharaoh was dying from sand that was eating away the enamel in his teeth allowing disease and decay to poison his body. I had never heard of such a thing but it certainly makes sense.
    This oldest part also told how and why Tut married his half sister as well as told how and why the tomb was so hard to find. There seemed to be some reason for people to want to totally erase everything there was about King Tut. He was just beginning to acquire the skill he needed to lead when he died, very mysteriously during the night. After Nefertiti (who was Tut's stepmother) and Tut died, Armana was destroyed by one of the people involved in Tut's murder, if you are to believe the conspiracy, and that seemed such a waste.
    The way that Patterson weaves these three parts together was very well done and I found myself thinking I really was just reading a really good mystery. The research that Dugard did is a huge part of what makes this a successful story. Even if you aren't an expert about this subject, and I am not, you have to have that research to make it feasible. AND, if you don't have a master storyteller like Patterson to add his research and then his writing skills to put the pieces together fluently and fabulously, then you wouldn't have THE MURDER OF KING TUT-and a really, very good book. I found this to be a great end of the summer read!(Review by Karen Haney, edited to meet size requirements)

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2009

    Very Disappointing

    James Patterson tried to draw readers into the story with an introduction that detailed his fascination with the death of King Tut. That's truly where the drama ended. By the conclusion of the book, I was asking why it had been written. Patterson talks about all of the projects he has going on at any given time. I think he should focus on a few good books rather than hordes of mediocre ones.

    7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The Murder of King Tut

    James Patterson and Martin Dugard's non-fiction thriller "The Murder of King Tut" reads like a Patterson novel but filled with facts. The authors have the theory that Tut was murdered and develop that idea with thorough research. The book has you going through three time period. The period of Tut, which was quite fascinating to read; the tale of Howard Carter, the archeologist obsessed with finding the tomb in the early part of last century and present day (Patterson's life being consumed by the mystery of Tut). In Patterson's usual style, the chapters are short, making it an easy read. He presents his theory, but I am not sure he convinced me. It was a thrilling read and I enjoyed it much better than some of his other recent works.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 28, 2009

    Laughable

    Did Patterson actually do ANY research for this book? His theories are preposterous and with no citations as to where his theories come from how is any intelligent human being supposed to follow through on the research and see where the ideas came from originally (preferably from an expert in the field)? It received one star only because it wouldn't let me post without one. UGH!

    6 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 18, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    The Murder of King Tut by James Patterson and Martin Dugard

    Another great book by bestselling author James Patterson. I truly enjoyed reading this book and could not put it down. This is a great nonfiction Thriller and brings to life the history of Eqypt. I still wonder if the Child King Tut got really killed or if he died of the accident. This will still be out for debate. I would recommend this book to anyone.

    6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 8, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    It could have been More

    My first Nook book and it was a dud. I was looking for more forensic research but got a pinch of research, a lot of fiction, and a mildly interesting read. I did learn that I like using the Nook. If a reader didn't know a lot about Tut or Howard Carter it could be an interesting primer. If you want more then there must be better resources. There was a TV special that was light years ahead of this, though it drew similar conclusions. How could you not love a who dun it book on Ancient Egypt- now I know, read this one.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 1, 2009

    What a pile...

    Forensics aside, it is fun to think that this Pharaoh was murdered. However, so is the idea of a curse! Modern medical forensics has demonstrated that Tutankhamun died from an accident resulting in his death and not the famous "blow to the head theory". It was an interesting premise now disproved by up to date medical results. Sorry...no cigar!

    3 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2012

    Another note

    I read some reviews and honestly you guys do not undrstand the world of forensics. No one knows what happened, aside from king tuts head wounds. But thats what makes this book incredible, James took little information and made a very plausible explanation of the occurance. Of course you would not realize that if you have no perception of how scientists do it. Thats all explanations on the matter will be, theories. Therefore get over yourselves and stop being negative towards a book you have no comprehension of and stop reviewing poorly.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 26, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    It was o.k.

    Maybe because of who the author is created a higher expectation for me, but I was left a little wanting. I wished more coul've been given to Tut's death and the conspiracy around it. I enjoyed Carter's part of the story but wished there was more about the murder, since it IS in the title.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 15, 2009

    waste of money

    I was very disappointed in this book. It did not add anything new nor did it reflect any research. Rather than waste ink and paper on writing about himself and his projects, Patterson should have positioned this as what it is: historical fiction with some bits of reality mixed in. Why exactly does he disagree with the findings of an accidental death? Easy to read but that is about it.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 21, 2011

    Decent book

    This was a good entertaining look at the possible murder of Kin Tut. I enjoy ancient history and this was not at all dry as so many books can be. I'm not sure if I believe Patterson's theory, but it is a interesting one and he did do his research. I especially liked his account of Tut's life in story form, it made the book zip by. It's worth a read if you are a nut for history, and enjoyable whether you think he 'solved the case' or not.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 30, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Fiction or Non? Either way, very disappointing

    The premise of "The Murder of King Tut" is very alluring, particularly with the power of two strong names in writing: James Patterson who's written many popular books and Martin Dugard who's written a couple of wonderful epic biographies.

    The delivery on this promise, however, was a terrible disappointment. I give this 2 stars instead of 1 only because I was able to finish it; mostly due to its 250 pages which are broken up by a very consumable 99 chapterettes. Yes...99 chapters in 250 pages.

    Mr. Patterson and Mr. Dugard didn't have much to say.

    The book bounces back and forth between the early 20th century focusing on Howard Carter and his early career and eventual discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamen - and the early 1300s B.C. focusing on the Boy King's birth and demise.

    The flashbacks to King Tut's era are filled with trite dialogue that I can only guess were drawn 100% from Patterson's imagination. Having read two other Dugard books, I would expect his involvement dealt exclusively with the non-fiction research. Much of Carter's chapterettes were taken from various diaries of his. Without any notes or bibliography, however, it was impossible to tell what was made up and what had at least some foundation in fact. These chapters were, though, interesting.

    Patterson would have us believe that King Tut was murdered, a common analysis that's not at all unique (just search for books on King Tut). Within the last couple of years, scientists have performed and analyzed a CT scan on Tut's body and concluded that he probably died from an infection caused by a broken leg. While I understand that this recent analysis is open to interpretation, Patterson dismissed it out of hand. I would've liked a little deeper rationale here.

    Patterson resolves this ancient whodunnit with the most simplistic of conclusions based on a painting within the room that contained the body of the Boy King. After reading about 220 pages and 90+ chapters, I'd come to realize that the masterstroke conclusion of who killed Tut would be as disappointing as the rest of the book.

    On that, Patterson delivered.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 14, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A disappointing read

    I'm a huge fan of historical fiction as well as James Patterson, so of course, I had to read this book. What a waste of time and money. This was such a wonderful idea for a story, but since the author positions it as "non fiction", what you end up with is a few facts and some informed speculation. It would have been a better read if the author had used the murder of the boy king as a starting point and built a fictional account of what could have happened. Such a book would have better employed his skills as a master story teller...and would have been more enlightening and entertaining as well.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 8, 2009

    Very Disappointing...don't bother buying

    Instead of being published in book form, this could have been published in Readers Digest...in 2 monthly installments.

    Nothing new in this book about Tut or Carter. Just the same old story re-hashed to sound like a murder mystery. I'm sorry I purchased it and wasted my money. The author said, this book was the most research he has ever done for a book, he really should stick to fiction that requires no research at all because I feel there was no research done for this book. Just a plot line, some fabricated dialogue between characters and a shiny cover on the book.

    Save your money or get it at the library

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 29, 2014

    Pretty bad. I like reading history and I like reading historica

    Pretty bad. I like reading history and I like reading historical fiction, but this was just bad. Having never read a James Patterson book before, it seems to me that he is full of himself and makes a lot of assumptions to make his writing more "intresting". This just did'nt do it for me. Capter 98 came out of nowhere and is really a let down, considering there was 100 chapters to this 332 page book. Skip it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2013

    He was not murered

    King tut suffered from a broken leg, maleria, skull fractures , brain damage , scientist think he finally died after a chairot accident eighter racing or fighting in battle this book is full of lies

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2013

    How many pages

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2013

    Autumn

    I think I will like this book because I love history,espcially about Egyt and stuff about the Civil War.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2012

    Ivystars story

    "Ivypaw i name u Ivysong . We honor your bravery . I also give you Whitepaw . " Great . She was a warrior . She was replaying that moment in her head while Whitepaw was eating . They were mates and Whitepaw was going to become a warrior . "Let all cats... Ivyteller " Climbstar snarled . "Get off my tarrtory . "" Maybe Climblight . I will deafeat u . All of u . "" Attack Fishclan " paws thudded the ground . Ivysong jumped on Tulip. Tulip clawed he but Ivysong douged . She raked her claws along Tulips flank . Then she relized Willowfog Whitepaw and Climbstar were the only ones left. Ivyteller Star and Lily were only there . Ivysong knew Star was a cave gaurd and Lily was a Prey hunter. Full ones at that . They were a moon older then her . Willowfog was friends with Lily . Whitepaw was friends with Star . Infact they were all friends . Climbstar was busy. "Attack " but they did not . "Then i exile u he said ." "Me too. " said Ivyteller . They had to go . Ivysong had to leave Starshine and Teeterstep her sisters her only kin besides her brother Toastface. Willowfog had to leave Spiritclimb her mate when she was going to have his kits . They left that day.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2012

    Negativity

    I cannot beleive it! All of this negativity coming from complete strangers! If don't like it, then just say it was bad! You DO NOT have to explain, like one reveiw said that it was horrible and said I cannot beleive that I wasted my time on this! And another said that it was lacking the information it needed. So what if also had a little fiction? Isn't that okay sometimes? So all I am saying is that don't be so negative. Th author IS a humam being and has feelings, too. So don't hurt them.

    It was a wonderful book.

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