Channeling Cleopatra

Channeling Cleopatra

by Elizabeth Ann Scarborough

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Overview

�Get the past life of your dreams!�

Leda Hubbard, a forensic pathologist, gets the job of her dreams when an old school friend hires her to collect and authenticate the DNA of the famous Cleopatra. It�s all great fun for Leda until, during a massive disaster, her colorful dad, the dig�s security specialist, is killed by a group trying to hijack the precious material for a �blend,� a process in which the queen�s DNA is used to import her memories, personality, and character traits to a new host. They screw up, however, and get Leda�s dad�s DNA instead. To keep the queen from going to the murderers, Leda blends with Cleopatra herself, learning a lot more about Egypt than she ever wanted to know.

�A bright, sometimes humorous, often dark, but always innovative speculative fiction. . . Elizabeth Ann Scarborough is always a treat to read but with this novel, she takes readers where nobody has gone before.� BookBrowser

Product Details

BN ID: 2940012626073
Publisher: Gypsy Shadow Publishing
Publication date: 01/28/2011
Series: The Cleopatra Books , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 221
File size: 163 KB

About the Author

Elizabeth Ann Scarborough is the author of 22 solo fantasy and science fiction novels, including the 1989 Nebula award winning Healer�s War, loosely based on her service as an Army Nurse in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. She has collaborated thus far on 16 novels with Anne McCaffrey, six in the best selling Petaybee series and eight in the YA bestselling Acorna series, and most recently, the Tales of the Barque Cat series, Catalyst and coming in December 2010, Catacombs (from Del Rey). CHANNELING CLEOPATRA�s sequel, CLEOPATRA 7.2, has also been re-released for eBook download by Fortune, an imprint of Gypsy Shadow Publishing. She is currently working on a YA fantasy cat mystery, SPAM VS THE VAMPIRE. She designs bead patterns for online sales and has had several of her finished bead designs published in best-selling bead books.

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Channeling Cleopatra 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
plappen on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It has been discovered that within the human DNA strands of every person is a mechanism that is constantly re-encoding. At the moment of death, a person¿s character, personality and memories are recorded in a helix. It is little more than an interesting scientific discovery until a method is developed to download those recordings into human hosts. Suddenly grave robbery is a major growth industry.Leda Hubbard is happy in the dull world of forensic anthropology. One day, Gabriella, her old college roommate, recruits her to search for the remains of Cleopatra, on behalf of a corporation called Nucore. A rich client named Gretchen Wolfe fears that her husband, Wilhelm, is developing an eye for other women. Who better than Cleopatra to keep him interested?Leda brings along Duke, her father and an ex-cop, along to Alexandria, Egypt, as head of security on the dig, and to watch her back. It turns out that other people are looking for Cleopatra, including Gabriella, but with more sinister intentions. Meantime, a powerful, amoral industrialist named Rasmussen isn¿t looking to ¿receive¿ anyone; he wants to put himself into several of his subordinates as his own brand of immortality.Leda finds the remains of Cleopatra. Gretchen downloads what she thinks is Cleopatra, but is actually Duke, Leda¿s father. He is later found dead. After some initial difficulties, the two get along with each other. To Duke, Gretchen doesn¿t need Cleopatra to keep her husband interested as much as she needs some well-fitting leather clothing.This one is a gem. The initial premise is excellent, the story is interesting, well done and a good piece of writing from start to finish.
rocalisa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Leda Hubbard is an ex-Navy forensic anthropologist and amateur Egyptologist in the near future. When she catches up with friends from her university days, she finds herself caught up in a clandestine search for the remains of Cleopatra VII. Chime and Tsering are now "blended", their consciousnesses joined inside Tsering's body since Chime's death. Together, they are now Chimera, and want Leda to be their sponsor, Nucore's agent at a dig in Alexandria in the hope DNA from Cleopatra might be found. The Nucore CEO's wife, Gretchen, wants to be blended with the ancient queen to save her failing marriage. Knowing she'll be essentially on her own in what is a fundamentalist Muslim country, Leda enlists her ex-cop father's help for security and sents off with a heavy collection of state-of-the-art equipment. She soon makes good friends with Dr Gabriella Faruk, who knows about the secret of blending and lives locally in Alexandria. It is once Leda discovers one of Cleopatra's canopic jars that things begin to go awry. And more and more awry. I was hoping to find time to reread this with the Beyond Reality group and once I read the first comments there - essentially that the book was implausible - I was determined to do so and see what I thought on a second reading. I have to agree. The basic idea is hugely implausible. In the first chapter the reader is asked to swallow first the idea that memory is stored at a cellular level and blending two people together is possible. From there, that it is supposed to be perfectly reasonable to go to a foreign country and recover DNA from one of its most famous (and very, very dead) citizens for this blending process. All this behind the back of the sponsoring company's CEO (who is also a personal friend) to let his wife blend with Cleopatra, not for any historical or altruistic motive, but to find out how to seduce her own husband. All in the first chapter. But, if you get past that and just accept it as the backstory for the book, this is an entertaining tale. There are places where the language felt a bit clunky but once Cleopatra has been found, the plot really gets going and smooths itself out. Leda is actually a little bland, although I still liked her. Her father, Duke, on the other hand, is a delight from the first moment we meet him. A man with a passion for motorcycles and wives (he's up to number five), he livens up each page he appears on. His interactions with Gretchen, later in the book are wonderful fun. Gabriella is under-explored I feel, especially given her importance to the story. We only meet Cleopatra herself briefly, and I look forward to seeing more of her in the sequel (now in hardcover). If one is to think seriously about a number of the ethical issues raised in this novel (something speculative fiction is supposed to do), there are some disturbing ideas raised. From the ethics of essentially raising someone from the dead (millenia dead even) to that of helping ones self to DNA from another country's historical figures or letting blending be for the very rich, it's all shaky ground. These issues are not really considered (except perhaps by Chimera); this is a light-hearted adventure tale with futuristic trappings rather than the reverse. As such, it works very well. Swallow the implausibilities, lean back and enjoy the adventure.
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Omega2 More than 1 year ago
This is one of the few books that I keep coming back and reading again and again. Elizabeth Scarborough has shown in this book a remarkable ability to create complex characters and situations.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Ever since Leda Hubbard was a young girl, she wanted to be an Egyptologist and join an important dig there. She enlisted in the navy to obtain her education because she couldn¿t afford to pay for it any other way. By the time she left the military, Leda had a Ph.D. in forensic anthropology. She was adjusting to the idea that she would never fulfill her dram when she receives a mysterious ticket to attend the International Conference of Egyptologists.

At the conference, she meets a friend Chimera who recruits her to work for a corporation who is sponsoring a dig in Egypt. The company, led by Chimera, found a way to incorporate the genetic and cellular memory of a dead person using their DNA, into a living person. In essence, two people would inhabit one body. Leda¿s job is to find out where famous people are buried in Alexandria so the company¿s rich clients can buy the cellular memory of the person they wish to coexist with. For Leda, problems arise when the wrong people want to get their hands on the technology and use it for their own ends.

CHANNELING CLEOPATRA is a bright, sometimes humorous, often dark, but always innovative speculative fiction. The heroine is feisty, bright and sparkling so that readers can¿t help but like her and root for her when she lands in trouble, which is quite frequent. Elizabeth Ann Scarborough is always a treat to read but with this novel, she takes readers where nobody has gone before.

Harriet Klausner