Sphinx's Princess by Esther FriesnerSphinx's Princess by Esther Friesner

Sphinx's Princess

byEsther Friesner

Paperback | August 24, 2010

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She was far more than just a pretty face. . . .

Although Nefertiti is the dutiful daughter of a commoner, her inquisitive mind often gets her into situations that are far from ordinary, like receiving secret lessons from a scribe. And her striking beauty garners attention that she'd just as soon avoid, especially when it's her aunt, the manipulative Queen Tiye, who has set her sights on Nefertiti. The queen wants to use her niece as a pawn in her quest for power, so Nefertiti must leave her beloved family and enter a life filled with courtly intrigue and danger. But her spirit and mind will not rest as she continues to challenge herself and the boundaries of ancient Egyptian society. With control of a kingdom at stake and threats at every turn, Nefertiti is forced to make choices and stand up for her beliefs in ways she never imagined.

As she did in Nobody's Princess and Nobody's Prize, author Esther Friesner offers readers a fresh look at an iconic figure, blending historical fiction and mythology in a heady concoction.

Nebula Award winner Esther Friesner is the author of more than 30 novels and over 150 short stories. She is also the editor of numerous popular anthologies. She is married, is the mother of two, harbors cats, and lives in Connecticut.You can visit Esther at www.sff.net/people/e.friesner/
Title:Sphinx's PrincessFormat:PaperbackDimensions:400 pages, 8.25 × 5.56 × 0.85 inPublished:August 24, 2010Publisher:Random House Children's BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0375856552

ISBN - 13:9780375856556

Appropriate for ages: 13 - 17


Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good I really liked this. It was well written and offered an interesting take on a story and a woman we know very little about. It ended in an awkward place but was otherwise a very good read
Date published: 2017-01-25
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Sphinx's Princess So this book is basically about this Egyptian girl name Nefertiti, who is actually a real Egyptian queen long ago, and her fight for her to make her own choices and not to be controlled by someone else and be force to marry someone she doesn't like. As you can see, I gave this book a 2 out of 5 stars, is not like I don't like it or anything, it's just that it isn't my kind of book. Sure, I will probably read the second one if i can find it in the library, just that I probably won't get my own copy of it. The concept of this book is very strong and clear,just that the betrayal part isn't as good. It is not such a surprise as it should be, since it really is kind of right in front of you, but the book it self is good. If you are thinking about whether to read it or not, I'll say go for it, since you might find it really interesting. If you love strong female lead, than this is your book. Why not gave it a try and see for your self. You might even fell in love with it.
Date published: 2016-12-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An Amazing Read! Back in March I first borrowed Sphinx's Princess but I wasn't able to get to it in time before it had to go back to the library. Story of my life...however last week I saw it while browsing the shelves at my local library branch and decided to give it another shot and am I ever so glad that I did. Sphinx's Princess was an amazing young adult historical fiction novel written by the ever popular Esther M. Friesner. When I first started the book I wasn't really sure what to expect from it. Though Danica from Taking it One Page at a Time's review of it made me really curious. I thought that maybe it would be a light and fluffy attempt at young adult historical with no substance but I was completely wrong. I have always had a love for Egyptian history and so hat is what initially drew me to this novel and I'm really glad I gave it a try. Like I said before I was a little concerned that the book would be a fluff piece but it really wasn't. From the first page it was evident that the author Esther Friesner had to have done an enormous amount of research to be able to pen this book. She was able to create a wonderful atmosphere for her novel by researching the historical figures that she used in this book as well as researching the day to day life of people in ancient Egypt including customs, religion and how they dressed as well as knowing quite a bit about the politics at the time. I was so pleased with the amount detail that went into the book because it helped me immerse myself in the story and it was as though I was actually there with our protagonist Nefertiti on her journey from a small child to a beautiful young woman with the gift of words. The way that all of that rich historical detail fit in with the overall story of Nefertiti's change from being a toddler to a young woman called to court by her Aunt Tiye The Great Royal Wife to marry her son the Crowned Prince Thutmose. It added that extra substance to the story because it made it feel as though the story was playing out right in front of me. I loved the story line of the novel. Nefertiti has always interested me and while this is a fictional account of her early life it is still based upon a lot of fact. What impressed me the most though was how well written the over all story was and the creation of the characters. I think that Nefertiti is probably one of my favourite bookish heroines of 2012 and one of my favourite heroines over all. She had a lot of spirit and had a lot of inner strength. This becomes especially apparent that this was true when she stands up to her Aunt Tiye and refuses to marry Thutmose until 3 years have passed. However, Aunt Tiye respects her a lot for her decision and outwardly acquiesce to her nieces decision but this doesn't stop her from trying to hasten the marriage along. While she's dined in the lap of luxury at the royal palace Nefertiti's world begins to unravel as treacherous plots are uncovered, accusations are made and death sentences are passed out like tick tacs and acts of betrayal become common place. Despite these hardships the bright Nefertiti still has friends in high places and just maybe, maybe things will work out for the better. Friesner depicted all of these things incredibly well for a young adult novel where such things may be passed over and not really delved into but she got right in there and even wrote the less favourable extremely well and I think that added a lot more substance to the novel. Overall, I thought the novel was great. There way the author used historical figures as characters in her novel was great. She aptly depicted the trials and tribulations of daily life in Ancient Egypt and wrote an incredibly well penned novel about the early life of one of the most famous queens in all of history. There was action, romance, mystery, inrigue, betrayal and murder which I think will allow this book to appeal to a wide audience of readers. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction especially if you have a love for ancient Egypt and young adult fiction and want a kick ass heroine. This book is one of my favourite books of 2012 and I can't wait to start the sequel to this book.
Date published: 2013-01-02

Read from the Book

Gathering Magic almost a year after I tamed my dream-lions, during the Festival of the Inundation, my life began to change as surely as the rising river changes the deepest heart of the Black Land.The Inundation is always a season of wild rejoicing. It’s the time when the god Hapy, fat and generous, makes the river overflow its banks to bring new life to the farmlands. A good flood means a good harvest, a good harvest means we’ll have more than enough to eat, that our Pharaoh’s reign is blessed, and that the gods love us.That year, when I was five, the priests of every temple in the city observed the rising of the Nile and declared that their prayers had given us a good flood and a fine harvest to come. All Akhmin filled the streets to celebrate the event with music, dance, song, feasting, and gladness. Sunlight flashed from the brilliantly painted walls of the temples and the enameled gold necklaces, bracelets, and earrings of the highborn men and women. The air was filled with a wonderful jumble of delicious scents from many food vendors. Everyone seemed to be laughing. Father carried me on his shoulders so that I could have a clear view of the festivi- ties. I was pleased to be able to see everything from up so high, but when I caught sight of the older girls dancing, singing, and playing their harps, rattles, and tambourines, I squirmed like a fresh-caught fish.“What’s the matter with you, my little bird?” Father asked, grabbing my ankles when I wriggled so hard that I nearly fell off his shoulders.“I want to get down!” I cried. “I want to dance, too!”He chuckled, but he didn’t let me go. “You’re not a bird anymore; you’re a kitten, wanting to pounce on anything that catches your eye. Well, little kitten, this dance is to please the gods and to thank them for all that they’ve given us. It’s a sacred thing, not a game for little girls to play at. If you want to dance for the gods someday, you will, but not now. When you’re older.”His voice was always loud, a trait he’d kept from his days commanding Pharaoh’s troops on the battlefield. One of the dancers who was waiting her turn to perform overheard him and left her group to approach us. I gasped when I saw her: She was so beautiful! Next to her, my dearly loved Mery would have looked like a little brown hen beside a long-limbed, dark-eyed gazelle. The dancer’s eyes were artfully outlined with black kohl, the lids glittering green as the reeds along the Nile, and her lips were tinted the rich red of sunset. I stared, fascinated by the dozens of gold charms adorning her tightly braided wig, but when she smiled at me and offered me her tambourine, I worshipped her with gratitude.While I bounced on Father’s shoulders, beating the little instrument with more enthusiasm than skill, she talked to him. At first I paid no attention to their conversation, but I soon began to feel Father’s back growing straighter and straighter, his shoulders tensing.“That will be enough, my darling,” he said, reaching up to still my hands. “Give the tambourine back to this young woman now and thank her.” I wondered why his voice sounded so strained, the way it did whenever I’d done something wrong that was too serious for him to laugh off.“Why so eager to be gone?” the dancer drawled, glancing up at Father from beneath lowered eyelids. “She can play with the tambourine a while longer. The child has talent as well as beauty. You should stay at least long enough to see me dance. I promise you, you won’t regret it.” She gave him a strange little half-smile.I didn’t know what the stranger was trying to do, giving my father such odd, sidelong looks; I just knew that he ?didn’t like it and neither did I. “I’m done,” I announced abruptly, handing back the tambourine. “Thank you very much. I want to go home now.”I saw the dancer’s lovely face turn ugly in an instant. She snatched the tambourine from my hands and muttered something under her breath. The only words I could make out were “that child . . . spoiled.”“I didn’t spoil anything!” I protested as Father carried me off.“And you never could,” he said fondly. “So let’s not spoil this happy day by going home too soon. There are still plenty of things to see and taste and try. Now tell me the truth, my kitten: Do you really want to go home, or did you just want to go away from that sharp-faced little dancer?”“Away,” I said. I took a deep breath and added: “I’m sorry.”“What for?” Father exclaimed. “For not liking her? That makes two of us.”“But I should have liked her,” I said. “She was beautiful, and she was kind to me. She let me play her tambourine, and she said nice things about me.”“My sweet one, beauty and favors and flattery don’t have anything to do with whether or not you should like someone. Affection isn’t something you can buy, not if it’s real. You still like Mery even when she scolds you, right?”“I love Mery,” I said loyally. “Even if she’s not as pretty as that dancer. She was much prettier than Mery, wasn’t she, Father?”“Hrmph.” Father coughed into his fist, or at least it sounded like a cough. “I don’t think so.”“You don’t?” What was wrong with Father, saying something like that? Mery was nice-looking, but nowhere near as lovely as the dancer.“No, I don’t,” he said firmly. “Anyway, there are more important things than beauty, dearest.”“But she was prettier than Mery, wasn’t she?” I insisted.“Let’s not worry about pretty and prettier,” Father said hastily. “And we won’t bother Mery with this. Besides, when you’re near, all the other girls look like old crocodiles. Now let’s go enjoy ourselves!” He broke into a brisk jog that made me shriek with delight as we raced back to the festival.From the Hardcover edition.