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on 26 May 2013
THE LOST ARMY Valerio Massimo Manfredi 1st edn. 2008 Hardcover

Dr. Valerio Massimo Manfredi, a very eminent Italian historian and the Professor of Classical Archaeology at the University of Bocconi and the author of some dozen or so very successful historical novels, several of which have been used as the basis for screenplays.

THE LOST ARMY was first published in English in 2008 although it had previously been a best seller in Italy under the title `L'Armata Perduta in 2007 and I originally read the original Italian version that year. My Italian really is not that good, but I struggled through with lessons from my wife, and enjoyed the story and so resolved to obtain the English edition when it was published.

The story follows the fortunes of the Greek mercenaries of Xenophon's Ten Thousand, the famed 'Anabasis' to the shores of the Black Sea, as witnessed by a young female camp follower. The tale is good one, but is a bit like the march through hilly country, with ups and downs in the storytelling, and the whole book is rather poorly translated into English, the dialogue in particular being a bit stilted.

I am a great fan of Dr. Manfredi but this English translation is not up to his expected standard, a bit of a bumpy ride for the reader, although the usual highly researched and meticulously accurate historical background gives a fascinating window into a rarely touched upon subject.

I have just re-read this book and I may revisit the original version again, my Italian may have improved marginally and I feel that I enjoyed it more than the English translation.
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on 31 March 2013
I bought this because I had seen the third novel in the series in my local supermarket. It sounded good so I immediately went looking for the first of the three novels. I am very glad I did. It was excellently written, interesting throughout with well researched history and a twist I was not expecting at the end. I felt the book really did transport you to Egypt as if you we're there along with the inspector but whether this was due to the author's descriptive abilities or my having been to the places in the story I do not know. I enjoyed the intricate details of the story and could not put it down until I got to the end. Having clicked onto the last page I instantly connected to the hotel wifi to download the next book in the series. Anyone with an interest in Egyptian history who likes archaeology/crime novels should enjoy this.
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on 14 September 2013
Oddly enough not long before this book arrived had seen a T.V. programme excerpt on Twitter about the finding of this "Lost Army."
Chose it and his other three because he was an exceptionally talented writer who died too soon. His love for and professional experience of Egyptology comes over in his novels. Glad all books arrived together.And safely in tip-top condition. Price for these books was excellent.Very pleased with service and items.Recommend both to anyone who asks about a good site from which to buy books of all genres.
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on 16 March 2015
An unusual approach to a different telling of 'The Ten Thousand' which has cropped up in various guises. I enjoyed the different perspective this brought and the romance added, rather than detracted, from the story. Good, strong, characters and a very well developed plot line. I almost got frostbite reading some sections! Very well worth reading.
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on 1 December 2008
Paul Sussman's Inspector Khalifa thriller, has a touch of Clive Cussler's Dirk Pitt adventures, starting with a an age old mystery of the lost army of Cambyses, before coming up to date with aforesaid Inspector.

I like novels that are set outside the USA for a change, and the lead character, an Egyptian detective and respectful Muslim family man, gives it an interesting edge.

Reasonably well paced, history (archaeology) thriller. Good read.
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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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on 22 January 2018
another great read from this writer
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on 5 June 2017
Great book part of a series
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on 16 January 2018
as advertised
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on 26 August 2008
I really enjoyed this book, Paul Sussman convincingly creates the hot atmosphere, dust, noise and smells of North Africa. Also a convincing lead in Inspector Khalifa.
I tried this after suffering a Matthew Reilly 'thing' (I can't call that a book) and my relief to find an intelligent author with something to say and history to back it up with - brilliant.
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