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Lights on the Nile

Lights on the Nile [Kindle Edition]

Donna Jo Napoli

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Product Description

Product Description

Kepi is a young girl in ancient Egypt, content to stay home with her family, helping her father, who was wounded in the construction of a pyramid for the cruel pharaoh Khufu. But that was before she and her pet baboon, Babu, were kidnapped and held captive on a boat bound for the capital city, Ineb Hedj. And when Kepi and Babu are separated, she knows she has only one choice: to make her way to the capital on her own, rescue Babu, and find a way to appeal to the pharaoh. Khufu is rich and powerful, but Kepi has her own powers, deep inside her—ones she herself doesn’t even know about yet.

Donna Jo Napoli, acclaimed author of Zel and Beast, revisits the fabled origin of fairies in this strikingly orig-inal and affecting novel of friendship.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 479 KB
  • Print Length: 293 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0061667935
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 edition (20 Sep 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004U70DB0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #446,377 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.8 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lights of the Nile 24 Sep 2011
By M. Tanenbaum - Published on
Ancient Egypt continues to hold great appeal for young and old, and even makes the best-seller lists (see Stacy Schiff's Cleopatra: A Life, for example). Award-winning author Donna Jo Napoli's newest book, suitable for elementary school readers, is set during that fascinating period, and tells the story of Kepi, a young girl living around 2530 BCE. Kepi's father, a laborer, has been wounded during the construction of a pyramid for Pharaoh Khufu. Kepi's life changes dramatically when she, along with her pet baby baboon, Babu, is kidnapped and hidden in a large basket on a boat. Where is she being taken and what will become of them? Babu, we soon discover, is destined to be sold to priests at one of the great city temples. When she is separated from her beloved pet, Kepi decides she must go see the powerful Pharaoh to tell him about men who are getting injured building his pyramid. Surely he will help these men and their families! Kepi will need to draw on all her courage to try to reach the all-powerful Pharaoh.

Napoli makes the reader feel that she, too, is travelling down the Nile, with her vivid descriptions of the wildlife--oryx, pelicans, and the dangerous hippos, crocodiles, and other animals--temples, gods, and people of the region. This is a quick-moving adventure story well-suited for middle-grade readers. Here in California, ancient Egypt part of the sixth grade curriculum, and this would be an excellent book to recommend for children developing an interest in that period. Many of the novels about this period for young people seem to involve Cleopatra; this new book makes a welcome addition to novels about the period, offering a story about an ordinary girl who takes an extraordinary journey.

One note: the publisher's copy for this novel indicates that the story "revisits the fabled origin of fairies." The end of the book does contain a fairy element (I won't go into the details here) but I would say that the fairy story is secondary in this novel to the historical fiction side. I would not want to pitch this to children as a story about fairies, since fairies do not even come into the narrative into the very end. A child expecting "Disney Fairies goes to ancient Egypt" will be very disappointed!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This isn't just a book for kids --- adults will love it, too, and it would make a great classroom or family read 9 Nov 2011
By KidsReads - Published on
You could say Kepi has her head in the clouds. It's not that she doesn't want to help her family make a living with their farm, it's that she gets distracted when she sees a beetle. Or when she gets a good idea. Or when she comes across a crocodile who has just finished lunch, and a baby baboon who has just been orphaned. When Kepi adopts the baboon and names him Babu, that's when things begin to change. Out picking figs for her father, Kepi and Babu inadvertently end up kidnapped and stuffed into a basket on a ship bound for Ineb Hedj, the capital city of ancient Egypt.

With no one but Babu for company, Kepi ends up forging a strange relationship with Menes, the man who kidnaps her. But he's not so interested in Kepi. Baboons are sacred, and Menes and his fellow boatmen will receive a hefty price when they sell Babu and Kepi as slaves to a temple in the capital. Kepi insists she'll have none of that, but she doesn't exactly want to escape. Ineb Hedj is where the pharaoh Khufu lives, and Kepi has a bone to pick with him. It is because of the pharaoh that her father was wounded while building a pyramid and now lives at home, poor and unable to work, except by baking bread.

It is on the boat, in the basket, that the stories Kepi's parents told her about the gods and goddesses come in handy. As she prays to each one, strange things begin to happen, and she is thrown from adventure to adventure, meeting new allies and enemies on each step. Every time Kepi finds Babu, she loses him again, and Menes changes from friendly to scary to fatherly, as he and Kepi must band together to regain what each of them has lost. Later, Kepi sets out alone and finds a boy her own age with a similar need to speak to the pharaoh. Finally, when she and her friends are faced with grave danger, she must make a choice that leads to sad but beautiful consequences.

Set against a stunning background of the Nile River, with rich details describing ancient Egyptian metallurgy, farming and weaving, LIGHTS ON THE NILE is an adventure for the adventure lover, a fairy tale for the fantasy reader, and a historical fiction for the serious reader. Kepi is somewhat reminiscent of both Huck Finn and Cinderella. It's wonderful to see a girl literally at the front of the boat, navigating her own way through a world that doesn't want to help her. This isn't just a book for kids --- adults will love it, too, and it would make a great classroom or family read. Donna Jo Napoli has once again recrafted a fairy tale so that it's something completely different, but still feels like home.

Reviewed by Sarah Hannah Gómez
3.0 out of 5 stars Promising read, but lacking. 3 July 2014
By Sarah - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A promising read it was, but it is lacking. The first chapters of this book were, in all honesty, good. I enjoyed them. They were quite the captivating chapters, and I found myself reading them non stop. And then I reached the middle. It seemed to me that the author decided that she had better things to do than finish writing this book. So she threw in a few metaphors, shook in a handful of similes, and dumped in overloads of action. Now, this recipe she concocted was not at all carefully crafted, unlike the proportioned ratios in the beginning chapters. They were, hurriedly done, really.
All in all, the book could have been a holder as one of my favorite novels, but instead, it was added to the list of books I struggled to finish without skipping chapters.
4.0 out of 5 stars Through Egypts Niles 10 Nov 2012
By emme - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
I'm intrigued about the Egyptian life, it's so mysterious. And this book was a interesting tale, it starts out with Kepi, who's father was injured in the making of a pyramid for Pharaoh Khufu. And while gathering supplies for her father the baboon (Babu) is stolen (she believes that the gods gave her the baboon).
And Kepi made it her mission to try to find him and also consult with Pharaoh Khufu about her father being injured. Overall this book was great, I do wish there was more though! And I look forward to reading more of Napoli's books.
4.0 out of 5 stars charming main character 13 Nov 2011
By Read for your future! - Published on
This would be a perfect first chapter book. A charming main character takes an amazing journey & adventure. Ending up being the stuff of legends. A delightful read for younger children. Not my usual age group, but a good read none the less. Perfect for a late primary classroom.

Publisher-HarperCollins Publishers
Reviewer Score: 4 Stars

Reviewed by~Mechele
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