"Good work but far from the author's best"
Though considered barbarians, the Retenu through
cleverness and superior transportation (horse driven
chariots) conquer the Lower Kingdom of Egypt.
Surprisingly, their Goddess Mare selects an Egyptian slave
Iry as her priestess. Many of the Retenu are shocked by
what seems as heresy by one of their most powerful
At about the same time, Iry's cousin Kemni, who suffers
from visions, foresees an alliance that could free Egypt
from the Retenu. He obtains an ally in the seafaring
Kingdom of Crete to help liberate his people from bondage.
Meanwhile Iry and Retenu Lord Khayan fall in love, but war
is inevitable, leaving Khayan in a bind and must choose
between love and duty.
THE SHEPHERD KINGS is an ancient work of historical
fiction that is clearly written for those readers who want
a closer look at the times especially what is obviously the
Hyksos. For most readers, the story line switches gear too
often, going from a fast paced action packed thriller to a
long drawn out character discussion of "modern" times thus
in many ways stripping the plot's horse power. The romance
is clearly designed to bring in that genre readers, but
feels more like invaders to the historical fiction fan.
Judith Tarr is a talentd author, but tries to do too much,
for too many, offering too little.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted November 24, 2001