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Publisher's Summary

An unprecedented account of one of civilization's greatest achievements.

The great pyramids of Giza have intrigued humanity for thousands of years. Questions about the construction and the purpose of these majestic monuments have existed since the middle period of ancient Egyptian civilization; in the sixth century B.C., Herodotus was the first of generations of explorers to travel to Egypt in an attempt to unlock their secrets. Recent cutting-edge research has uncovered information, unimaginable to previous generations, about how and why they were built.

In Mountains of the Pharaohs, Zahi Hawass, a world-renowned archaeologist and the official guardian of Egypt's timeless treasures, weaves the latest archaeological data and an enthralling family history into a spellbinding narrative.

Nearly 5,000 years ago, the fourth dynasty of Egypt's Old Kingdom reigned over a highly advanced civilization. Believed to be gods, the royal family lived amidst colossal palaces and temples built to honor them and their deified ancestors. Hawass brings these extraordinary historical figures to life, spinning a soap opera-like saga complete with murder, incest, and the triumphant ascension to the throne of one of only four queens ever to rule Egypt.

The magnificent pyramids attest not only to the dynasty's supreme power, but also to the engineering expertise and architectural sophistication that flourished under their rule. Hawass argues that the pyramids, including the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still standing, were built by skilled craftsman who took great pride in their work.

©2006 Zahi Hawass; (P)2006 Tantor Media, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"For Egyptophiles, this will be [a] must listen." (Publishers Weekly)
"This account is not only a history of the pyramids but also a compelling account of the powerful kings of ancient Egypt." (Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.4 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • Overall

Good book

Wow, so much information! Going through the lines of rulers and the tombs and monuments through out Egypt. Full of current discoveries as well as past findings. Putting them together for a full picture of the history. I enjoyed this book but will need to listen again to get a better understanding.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • James
  • Berea, KY, USA
  • 03-30-08

The Old Kingdom Made Alive.

This book presents in a concise, understandable way the kings of the 4th dynasty.
While considerable space is given to the pyramids;
it also includes information about the burial temples and tombs of lesser functionaries. There is also a discussion of the Great Sphinx and techniques of building. I thoroughly enjoyed the book.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Snoring

Publisher Weekly said this is a must read...Ha!
Insomniac Nightly gave it the same endorsement!

This book does NOT tell how the Great Pyramids were built.
It's a long boring narrative; listing which king was married to which sister and the name of their cousin and so on.

17 of 23 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Foundational Egyptology

Zahi Hawas makes a splendid History Channel host but his true talent lies in his ability to express concepts and truths for subject matter that he is no doubt passionate about. This book will remain in my library as a fundamental work. Read it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

OK

I am not an Egyptologist but have always been fascinated with Egypt, the pyramids etc. I had a hard time following the names, places, and relevance of facts. I think someone more versed in the subject would get a lot out if it.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful