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Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Maya Papyrus

The Maya Papyrus by Richard Coady

Always curious how a story starts, when the first thing you see is a list of the cast of characters alphabetically, it gives you warning how many characters are involved, and how it might be confusing, needing a reference point.  As such, you can only imagine how involved the story is with a list like this.

Set in Egypt, this is the story of the continuing struggle for the reign of King, and their heirs.  The story is told by Maya, the royal courtier and historian, and what he has written.  In addition, Maya’s story is interspersed with what is happening at the same time.  Sometimes making it a bit confusing, sometimes leading you to believe what you think is coming next.

While the story begins with one king taking his young son into his first battle.  After that battle, the child does not want to be king, but being heir to the throne, the boy who did not want to be king became king.  Continuing tradition for generations, the first born son is to become heir, and when you add in an intervening mother-in-law, it is amazing how the turn the events can change things.  Murder for the good of the people and the kingdom, beliefs in one God instead of another, the story goes through numerous generations and people.

While it is a very interesting read in Egyptian history, a bit too much time is spent on one king.  The story is written in great detail and is very in depth, but while each of the kings needs to have their glory and to show their strengths, weaknesses and beliefs, and no piece of history should be ignored, even if it has a few fillers for the parts that may never be knows, it could have had a bit less on Amenophis.