Michelle Moran certainly knows how to unfold the political intrigue that is enmeshed in the history of Nefertari's family and keep me interested. This book seems to also have been well-researched, as far as I can tell. As someone who's only ever read about Egyptian history to idly pass the time, I definitely won't be able to vouch for historical accuracy but the way the gods were a constant presence of both comfort and threat in Nefertari's life seemed quite right with what I know of ancient Egyptian religion.
This is essentially an underdog story. Nefertari is well-nigh universally shunned for the errors of her family, but with perseverance and way more patience than I myself could ever summon, she gets her happy ending and you really do feel it.
Still, this is just a three-star novel for me. I never really saw what was in Ramesses to inspire such incredible devotion in Nefertari. Ramesses is everyone's hero; the novel merely gives it to the readers as fact but never really gives a reason save for that he is Pharaoh. I was not convinced. The book may focus more on Nefertari path through the intrigues in the palace, but the reason she decides to undergo such incredible trials is her love for Ramesses, so it is rather important to have the readers actually believe
in that love.
Show, don't just tell over and over again.