Review

Guardian of the Horizon

by Elizabeth Peters


"Just when the Editor believed she was nearing the end of her
arduous task of editing the Emerson papers, a new lot of them
turned up. They include most of the journals from the so-called
missing years…"

If you have been following the adventures of Amelia Peabody and
husband Radcliffe Emerson, you will realize the excitement these
papers have stirred up. Their lively chronicles thus far have
omitted 1907 and 1908, but Ms. Peters has now filled in the
gap.

In the spring, Emerson, Peabody, their son Ramses and foster
daughter Nefret were on an archaeological hunt in Egypt. But
Emerson's famous temper --- the very one that earned him the
moniker Father of Curses --- got them not only evicted from their
site, but evicted with the stern order not to return. While
figuring out how to spend their time back at home in England, a
young messenger who claims to be their friend Tarek's brother
arrives with an urgent plea for help. Tarek, from the Lost Oasis,
is in desperate need of medical treatment for a mysterious illness
that has afflicted his son. Despite some misgivings, they cannot
say no.

Once they put together their supplies and gather their trusted
hands, they set out on a treacherous --- and, unfortunately, not so
secret --- trek back to the Lost Oasis. Traveling at first by boat,
tension mounts with a series of "accidents." Days later, while
riding the rails in an effort to throw off any suspicious types,
they loudly discuss plans to explore farther south and then quickly
abandon the train at an early opportunity.

Through blowing sand, riding cantankerous camels and avoiding
marauding ambushers, they make their way, led by the stranger
calling himself Tarek's brother. But as one might fear, all is not
what it appears. Emerson, Peabody and their entourage meet with
disheartening deceit and betrayal. When they left a decade before,
Tarek ruled the land. Now, they are not sure what to expect. Once
in the holy city, they find themselves fighting for their old
friend, their ward Nefret, and their very lives. To complicate
matters, Ramses is behaving like a lovesick puppy.

Amelia Peabody is an infinitely spunky woman. A gutsy man of around
20 and a chip off the old block, Ramses marvels at his mother's
ability to find excellent solutions to seemingly impossible
problems. He has no qualms about carrying out her plans. Quite the
opposite, he intrepidly embraces action over inaction --- at least,
when he's not pining over the girl. And Emerson, undeniably no
coward, boldly goes wherever he wishes, blustering and swearing his
way through any and all blockades. Between them, they keep their
enemies busy.

Elizabeth Peters writes an intriguing mystery teeming with
authentic touches. Her Ph.D. in Egyptology makes her story come
alive. And her sense of adventure jumps out from every page.

Reviewed by Kate Ayers on January 22, 2011

Guardian of the Horizon
by Elizabeth Peters

  • Publication Date: March 29, 2005
  • Genres: Fiction, Mystery
  • Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Avon
  • ISBN-10: 0061032468
  • ISBN-13: 9780061032462