The Sacred River – Wendy Wallace

the sacred riverLuxor is wonderful.  The air is dry, clear, and for the first time in her life, Harriet can breathe.  For the first time she truly feels alive.  The noxious fogs of Victorian London made Harriet’s asthma life threatening, so her mother finally agreed to take her to Egypt for her health.  Harriet has been fascinated by all things Egyptian for most of her twenty-three years, teaching herself to read hieroglyphics and occasionally using them to create charms.  She doesn’t care whether or not her health improves, just to see Egypt will make her life complete.  At the request of her father, Yael, her father’s spinster sister, goes with them.  This is the story of three women, released from society’s constraints, becoming themselves, each in her own way.  It is beautifully written, with the atmosphere of Egypt filling the pages.  I could feel the heat and dust of Alexandria and the cooling breezes of Luxor.  The characters were well drawn, always properly Victorian, never stepping out of the 19th century.   I enjoyed the book, and recommend it.

eGalley review      Publication date 7.1.14

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