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4.2 out of 5 stars80
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 19 July 2012
What a fantastic debut novel, fast paced full of action and intrigue a real page turner. Using the well known legend of the lost army and mixing it up with modern day politics made an interesting change the author certainly knows his Eygptian history. Good strong characters and I look forward to meeting them again in a sequel I hope.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 26 September 2006
It is always an exciting time for me when I find a new author who writes about the subjects I am interested in. This is Paul Sussman's first novel and he certainly seems to have the magical gift of storytelling. The book is based around a well documented event in early history. In 523 BC the Persian Emperor Cambyses sent an army across Egypt's desert to destroy an oracle at Amun. Somewhere in the deserts the army of 50,000 men were destroyed by a sandstorm. The book is set in modern times and there is much murder and mystery involved. Inspector Yusuf Khalifa of the Luxor police is brought in to solve the crimes, but even he is amazed by the sting in the tail that this book has in store for the reader. This really is a gripping book, one of the best I have read this year, and I commend it to you.
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VINE VOICEon 22 April 2007
In 525 BC the Persian emperor Cambyses II invaded Egypt and successfully overthrew the native Egyptian pharaoh, Psamtek III, last ruler of Egypt's 26th Dynasty to become the first ruler of Egypt's 27th Persian Dynasty. Cambyses II sent his army to Siwa Oasis in the Western Desert to seek (or seize) legitimization of his rule from the oracle of Amun, much as Alexander the Great would do in the 4th century BC. However, the army was overtaken by a sandstorm and buried.

For centuries adventurers and archaeologists have tried to find the lost army, and at times, tantalizing, though usually false glues have been discovered. Within recent years all manner of artifacts and monuments have been discovered in Egypt's Western Desert. Here and there, new discoveries of temples and tombs turn up, even in relatively inhabited areas where more modern structures are often difficult to distinguish from ancient ruins. Very recently, when a geological team from the Helwan University geologists found themselves walking through dunes littered with fragments of textiles, daggers, arrow-heads, and the bleached bones of the men to whom all these trappings belonged.

So far so good the reality which forms the background of this amazing crime story which will hold you from page one and only lets you go with the very last page. It is a page turner where fact and fiction merge into a one. Paul Sussmann knows how to hold the reader's interest, develops the personalities and the story in a convincing and interesting way. The various leads merge at some point, the twist are not outrages in the sense that one asks oneself "Where the hell is this coming from".

There are some aspects one needs to think about: terrorism, its roots and its effects.

All in all a book I highly enjoyed and can equally recommended.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 15 November 2004
It is always an exciting time for me when I find a new author who writes about the subjects I am interested in. This is Paul Sussman's first novel and he certainly seems to have the magical gift of storytelling. The book is based around a well documented event in early history. In 523 BC the Persian Emperor Cambyses sent an army across Egypt's desert to destroy an oracle at Amun. Somewhere in the deserts the army of 50,000 men were destroyed by a sandstorm. The book is set in modern times and there is much murder and mystery involved. Inspector Yusuf Khalifa of the Luxor police is brought in to solve the crimes, but even he is amazed by the sting in the tail that this book has in store for the reader. This really is a gripping book, one of the best I have read this year, and I commend it to you.
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on 15 May 2002
I strongly disagree with review by minidiscdrive! Having chosen a book of a completely different genre to my usual choice, I was thrilled to have “invested my time” reading it. There is enough historical detail for those amongst us who are familiar with the territory, to realise that Paul Sussman must have performed some painstaking research. The story is a surprising blend of fascinating historical reference, and a most unexpected swashbuckling Indiana Jones style murder mystery with some great characterisation to boot. This includes an interesting portrayal of entirely fictional Muslim fundamentalists. (The book jacket quickly points out the book was finished well before the Sept 11th incident!) There’s even a smattering of heart (gut?) wrenching romance for those of us inclined toward that field. And the most important thing? It’s a great story. Excellent.
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on 29 July 2006
Dan Browne who? This beats the Da Vinci Code hands down. I hope film bosses read this book.

I picked up The Last Secret of the Temple in duty free recently and could not put it down so I thought I would go for Sussman's first book. I was not disappointed!

Fantastic read - good characters, plot twists and the baddies are exceptional. It was good to read about my now old friend Khalifa - he's in 'The Temple' and you get to feel a real empathy for him. It makes a change for the characters not to be American.

My only criticism would be Sussmans, sometimes excessive use of swearing - especially certain words uttered by his female character... Its hated by alot of women but don't be put off by this criticism just read through it as its worth it.

Keep writing Mr Sussman.
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on 21 August 2006
This is a fast flowing fictional adventure novel that makes for ideal reading on a long flight or on the beach. It's one of those books that you find yourself having to keep reading to see what happens next. If you are looking for a book to exercise the old grey cells, don't bother! If you are looking for a light read, then this is the book for you.
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on 3 May 2013
I had read Paul's final book, which he completed before he sadly died, and really enjoyed the humour and storyline. The lost army has also been a very good read, a nice mix of action and fascinating history wrapped around very nasty characters. I look forward to reading Paul's other books with sadness as I feel we have lost a very good storyteller.
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on 20 December 2007
English zoologist Tara Mullray visits her renowned Egyptologist father Michael at a dig only to find her dad dead. At approximately the same time, a black market antiquities seller is also found dead with his mutilated corpse lying by the Nile covered with cigar burns. Inspector Yusuf Khalifa of the Luxor Police Department is assigned to investigate both homicides. Because of the nature of their respective professions, two sides of the same coin, Yuseuf seeks a link between the murders. He quickly learns of a third facet when an elderly Cairo antiquities dealer is killed (with cigar burns on the body) in his shop, but nothing is stolen. Yuseuf interviews Tara who informs him that the excavation site where her father died contained the odor of cigar smoke. Soon the Egyptian and British politico take an interest in how much Yuseuf knows because terrorist Sayf al-Tha'r lingers in the background. THE LOST ARMY OF CAMBYSES is a strong police procedural that interweaves archeological elements into the plot, but though engaging and educational never slows down the pace of the story line. The tale is at its luxurious best when Yuseuf investigates. The novel remains powerful even when the British embassy and the Egyptian Antiquities Bureau interfere with the inquiry due to a fear of Islamic Fundamentalist involvement. When the plot twists more into a thriller, it retains its excitement, but veers away from its prime theme of murder investigations at the Pyramids. Still this is a tremendous first dig into the mystery world by renowned archeologist Paul Sussman and hopefully he will provide more exciting tales for his faithful students!! Also, if you missed reading Tino Georgiou's masterpiece--The Fates, go and read it.
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on 20 April 2006
This is the author's first book and is based in Egypt and involves the usual suspects: tombs, snakes, artefacts etc.

The book is well written and the characters are well developed. It stands well above other books that cover similar themes due to the few surprises that were unforeseen.

The book was read in 2 days, which is a good indication of how much it gripped me.

I like it so much I will be reading the author's next book: The Last Secret of the Temple.

This book is well deserving of 4 stars.
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