Orphan of the Sun

Orphan of the Sun

4.6 3
by Gill Harvey
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Thirteen-year-old orphan Meryt-Re lives with her aunt's family in the ancient Egyptian village of Set Maat, home of the pharaohs' tomb builders. When her uncle pressurises her to marry a dull stonecutter, she resists, and begs for guidance from the gods - but she's unable to decipher the message behind her vivid dreams. Then her cousin falls gravely ill, and

See more details below

Overview

Thirteen-year-old orphan Meryt-Re lives with her aunt's family in the ancient Egyptian village of Set Maat, home of the pharaohs' tomb builders. When her uncle pressurises her to marry a dull stonecutter, she resists, and begs for guidance from the gods - but she's unable to decipher the message behind her vivid dreams. Then her cousin falls gravely ill, and Meryt's uncle, believing her to have turned the gods against him, banishes her from his house.


Other strange and suspicious activities are going on in the village, and there is unrest among the tomb workers. But it is not until she meets the village wise woman that Meryt can begin to unravel the meaning of her dreams and solve the mysteries surrounding her.


A romantic and pacy thriller that brings ancient Egypt to life.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Ann T. Reddy Damon
Meryt-Re, orphaned, thirteen years old, and facing a proposal of marriage to a boring man, has much on her mind. Her best friend's father is accused of theft, her dreams offer glimpses of prophecies, and she is tormented by her cousin Baki. When Baki's ritual circumcision causes grave illness, she finds herself homeless as well. Meryt-Re, Beloved of Re, consults her father's tomb for advice on her troubles. She draws her prayers on an ostracon (broken piece of pottery or stone) and offers them to Hathor, the cow-headed goddess of love. But it is from her friendship with Teti, the Knowing One famous for her powers of divination and herb lore, that Meryt learns of her own place in the village. She must trust the voice of her gods and act on these words, allowing others to do as they must. This intriguing tale set in ancient Egypt combines the clever sleuthing of a great mystery with historical relevance. Harvey fictionalizes characters out of the ruins of Set Maat, modern-day Deir el Medina, a village inhabited by the tomb builders of the New Kingdom in 1169 BC. The villagers' social structures, religious beliefs, and living patterns are woven into this story through fictionalized characters. This book would make a fine addition to a cross-curricular study of Ancient Egyptian culture, although a discussion of historical relativism should also be included. It makes the factual events in textbooks livelier through a well-told story.
School Library Journal

Gr 5–8
In ancient Egypt, where the gods and magic rule peoples' lives, 13-year-old Meryt-Re rejects her uncle's assertion that she is under the power of Sekhmet, bringing pestilence and destruction to those around her. Still, her cousin's circumcision becomes infected and he comes close to death; and there is trouble in town where a worker is making increasingly serious accusations against his foreman, the father of her best friend. Thrown out of her uncle's home, Meryt-Re eventually finds refuge with the town Wise Woman, who helps her make sense of her psychic dreams and bring healing to her community as well as to her family. Full of details of daily life in an artisan town exclusively devoted to building royal tombs, the story plunges readers into a very different political and social world. Meryt-Re's world seems distant, but the author provides some connections: readers will sympathize with her unwillingness to marry someone she doesn't like and the difficulty she has coming to terms with her own powers. Solid historical fiction with special appeal for fans of Egyptian history.
—Kathleen IsaacsCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
A spirited girl with a gift for predicting the future unravels secrets plaguing a village in ancient Egypt. As an orphan, 13-year-old Meryt-Re occupies a precarious position in Set Maat, a village housing craftsmen who build the royal tombs of the New Kingdom. Tormented by her cousin Baki, Meryt never feels welcome in her uncle Senmut's crowded house. Senmut is eager to see Meryt married to a plodding stonecutter she barely knows, especially since her ability to foretell events has many villagers wondering if she is under the power of Sekhmet, goddess of pestilence and destruction. When Baki becomes gravely ill, Senmut blames Meryt and banishes her. Haunted by strange dreams, the homeless Meryt turns to Teti, the village "rekhet," who teaches her to use dreams to find the truth. With the welfare of her family and friends threatened by mysterious events, Meryt follows her instincts and eventually solves the puzzle. Harvey deftly weaves historically accurate details of daily life in sun-scorched Set Maat into an intriguing plot. Fascinating fodder for budding Egyptologists. (glossary, maps) (Historical fiction. 8-12)

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781408852514
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
12/01/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
769,896
File size:
3 MB

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >