It's 57 BC, and Princess Cleopatra's father, the Pharaoh, has gone into hiding after an attempt on his life. Even his children don't know where he is. But Cleopatra fears that the assassin will eventually succeed - and she must be ready to take the throne. She wants to be the best Pharaoh Egypt has ever known.
Well, what can i say? The first thought i had whilst reading this story was thank god i didn't live in this era! Poor Cleopatra.
The story begins when Cleopatra is 13yrs old. She shares with us her life, her two friends and her family.
After attempts of assassination are aimed at her father, King Ptolemy, he goes into hiding. This causes Cleopatra's oldest sister Tryphaena to take over the crown without permission.
Over the course of time with the help of her friends, Cleopatra learnt several other languages. This was if something happened to the King and Cleopatra needed to take the throne to look after the people, then she will be ready for it.
As it was, whilst Cleopatra and the King were in Rome trying to gather an army to help them keep their province, Tryphaena took over the crown. This infuriated the King and on his return he sent his daughter away to be beheaded! This causes Cleopatra a lot of anguish. Not because of the loss of her sister, as they didn't get along at all, but because her father had ordered it to be done. She was now fearful that she upsets her father in any way she knows that she would suffer the same fate.
This story is very detailed. The plot draws you in right from the first page. Apart from a few beheadings i think this story would suit readers age 11+
There are historical notes at the end of the book also. These help the reader understand the era, and how some information isn't conclusive as there are still missing parts in history.
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"Character - the willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life - is the source from which self respect springs."
Joan Didion (1934 - ), 'Slouching Towards Bethlehem'