Learn more Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Learn More Shop now Fitbit
Customer Review

3.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating topic, but I found this book disappointing overall..., 29 Jan. 2014
This review is from: The Shadow King: The Bizarre Afterlife of King Tut's Mummy (Hardcover)
I have to confess I found this book disappointing. It's a fascinating topic, not so much a history of Tutankhamun and Ancient Egypt as it is a history of the archaeological investigations of Tutankhamun; of how his tomb was discovered, investigated, analysed; the different approaches used, from dentistry, anatomy and radiography to genetics; the academic arguments and debates; the behind-the-scenes string-pulling, political and nationalist agendas; the commercialisation of Tutankhamun's image and the role television has played in funding much of the research.

But for me, it was lacking something. It seemed to bounce too much between scientific overview and personal monologue. There were some careless errors, which really should have been picked up in editing - Tutankhamun's skull being described as 157 centimetres wide, as one example! And (and I freely acknowledge this is my own personal niggle) to my mind no self-respecting author, unless they are writing children's books, should be using the word 'tummy' when discussing archaeological and scientific research! To me it reads very much like a very intelligent and educated author (Marchant has a PhD in genetics, after all) trying just that bit too hard to be approachable, to 'dumb down' quite complex issues for the lay audience.

And in the end, what do we learn of Tutankhamum himself? Nothing. Which, I'll concede, is partly the point of this book. Depending on which scientist, archaeologist or historian you believe, he was either "a tragic child who succumbed to tuberculosis, a murder victim, daredevil chariot racer, malaria-infected cripple, brave soldier, and even a hippo’s last meal."
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
  [Cancel]


Review Details

Item

Reviewer

C. Ball
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

Location: Derbyshire

Top Reviewer Ranking: 468