Being stuck in the past takes on a whole new meaning...
What if your worst enemy sent you on a one-way ticket to the past? Worse, later he shows up and tries to play match-maker with a dominant historical figure while all of history and the future are on the line? Survival is just one problem, but then add your friends into the mix...
Following an intense battle between the Indians and the Crackedskulls, Neiko and her comrades enjoy victory while her enemies suffer a crushing defeat. Victory is short lived for Neiko when Francesco pays her a visit at her home and sends her away in order to collect on his threat of revenge. She is banished into the ancient world of ancient Egypt during the reign of Ramesses II the Great on a one way ticket.
Lost and trapped in this ancient world, it doesn’t take very long for trouble to find her. Taken by a rich man, she is reunited with three her friends that had been missing, and an eleven-year-old mystery is finally solved, but one of Neiko’s friends is still unaccounted for. After escaping from the rich man and journeying to Thebes, Neiko and her comrades have actually jumped from the pan and into the fire.
Things go horribly awry when Pharaoh finds out about Neiko and becomes infatuated with her. Francesco comes to Egypt on orders to bring her back, but he has other plans. Can Neiko and her friends thwart Francesco, return to the 21st century, and escape from the past and one of the greatest kings that ever lived?
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Reviewed by Benjamin Ookami for Readers' Favorite It has been three years since we last saw Neiko Kidd, the bane of the Crackedskulls, in A.K. Taylor's Neiko's Five Land Adventure, the first installment in the Neiko Adventure Saga. Now, in Escape from Ancient Egypt, we meet a twenty-one-year-old Neiko who is more mature, but still hasn't kissed anyone yet. Someone has a bone to pick with her and that someone is Francesco, the Crackedskull spy that Neiko exposed three years ago. Francesco has created a crystal and with it, he sends Neiko back in time to ancient Egypt, ruled by a hotheaded Ramesses the Great. Escaping with her long lost Indian friends from a cruel slave master is only one problem solved. When Ramesses first lays eyes on her, her real problems begin. Yet again, Neiko's beauty causes her some serious issues. This time, there are no demonic Georgians in heavy armor for Neiko to worry about as the only magic in this novel comes from the crystal that Francesco creates. Ramesses proved to be an extremely hilarious villain to read about, even though he is revered by all who dwell in his realm. I felt sorry for Neiko, because no matter how hard she tried, Ramesses always had the upper hand. The author certainly knows how to take things an entire level above interesting. A battle of epic proportions awaits the reader at the end, and everything that leads up to it makes it even more thrilling. It is a gratifying book that is suitable for readers as young as thirteen to read.
Wise Bear Books Reviews Escape From Ancient Egypt by A.K. Taylor -- 3.5 Paws! Escape From Ancient Egypt by A.K. Taylor is an ambitious book with some important messages, but also some structure challenges. It's important to note we are evaluating Escape From Ancient Egypt as a stand-alone novel, despite it being the second book in the Neiko Adventure Series, as we have not read the series' first installment. However, we have some basic knowledge of the first book as well as a cursory understanding of the plot and characters. The author attempts to bring readers up to speed in the first chapter as Neiko updates her personal journal—we read as she writes. This is a good idea in theory, but there is a level of complexity to the author's fantasy which makes this background information difficult to fully comprehend in a few digital pages. This makes the novel's beginning a little confusing as there are a lot of characters and plot lines to explain. It takes a few chapters for readers to get their bearings, but stick with it as it does get easier. While this book is written for young teens and up, the subject matter at times is far too mature for its intended audience. There is also an imbalance between the youthful tone of the writing and the seriousness of the content. Readers observe Neiko experience a range of emotions as she is transported back in time against her will to Egypt during the reign of Ramasses. The novel's villain, Francesco, has schemed to remove Neiko from her position of power and authority within the hidden Hawote tribal community by secretly sending her to ancient Egypt using a magic crystal. When other leaders within the community discover where Neiko is, Francesco is commanded to bring her back. He returns to ancient Egypt not to rescue Neiko and her warrior buddies, but to ensure her permanent place 3,000 years in the past as an Egyptian slave. He also aims to become Ramasses’ advisor and confidant. Francesco's goal is to learn from the great Pharaoh and then return to his own time to gain control of the seven tribes, and that can't happen if Neiko is around. Francesco's plan seems to be going well—almost too well as Ramasses becomes obsessed with 21-year-old Neiko. The Pharaoh is determined to not only marry Neiko, but also to appoint her to be his Great Wife ahead of Nefeteri and other unnamed wives. The “great honor” brings with it the threat of immediate death to her in the event of Ramasses’ own untimely passing. Apparently it was common in Egyptian culture for a great wife to be either buried alive or killed once her husband had gone the way of all the earth—a sobering thought at any age. To say that Neiko is resistant to all that is going on around her without her knowledge or consent is a gross understatement, and yet many of her efforts to change her circumstances don't seem logical and perhaps a bit immature and repetitive. Neiko is essentially being abused mentally and emotionally by her fictional captor husband whose primary goal in the context of this storyline is to make Neiko love him. This doesn't seem to be appropriate subject matter for a young teen girl audience, given the adult ages of Neiko and we assume the much older Ramasses. While Neiko won't give Ramasses the time of day despite their shotgun wedding of sorts, an odd union between her and Nefeteri develops. Neiko's de facto sister wife is sympathetic toward her. The women are more comrades than rivals. This is a nice surprise and effective as it would have been easier to pit the two women against each other, but then again, our protagonist has enough on her plate with Ramasses. The Escape From Ancient Egypt storyline is good conceptually with lots of action and we did find ourselves anxiously wanting to know how the author resolved Neiko's dilemna. Taylor also does a nice job of drawing the reader into the fictional world of ancient Egypt literally with her fantastic artwork interspersed throughout the novel. Our recommendation for this book would be for an older teen audience. That said, there is a fair amount of slang and unorthodox dialog that is better suited for a middle school or elementary age audience, hence the structure and balance issues we referenced at the beginning of this review. As a digital work, this book exceeds all primary requirements for a good reader experience. What's great about digital publishing is the opportunity to resolve editing, dialog, and character issues for subsequent book release updates. Neiko has tremendous potential as a literary role model for young girls as she can teach through her fictional examples how to take control of their own lives, but it has to be in context with the appropriate story for the right age group. In that respect, we look forward to future installments of the Neiko Adventure Series. This book was reviewed as part of the Wise Bear Digital Book Awards competition. Entry fees associated with the contest are administrative in nature and do not influence our honest, unbiased book reviews.