The Hippopotamus Pool #8- Elizabeth Peters

The Hippopotamus Pool is the eighth book in Elizabeth Peters’ Amelia Peabody series. Amelia Peabody became a series in which I warmed up to the characters in each book and look forward to her next adventures. On the one hand, this series fuels my love for Ancient Egypt; on the other hand, it allows me to see the development of the characters I love very much. I love this series the most because it is easy to read and helps me distract myself. I think this will be the longest series I’ll ever finish, with twenty books.


The Hippopotamus Pool is one of those books in which all the essential characters are actively involved. Frankly, I realized that I enjoyed less reading the books that did not include much of Ramses and cats. In that respect, The Hippopotamus Pool was quite enjoyable for me.

The Hippopotamus Pool - Elizabeth Peters

While Peabody and Emerson are in Egypt for the season, they attend a beautiful high society ball, of course. Before the night is over, a very mysterious stranger tells these two about the lost tomb of an Egyptian queen. However, before he can tell the real mystery, a strange event occurs, and the stranger disappears. Although Emerson and Peabody don’t want to worry too much about this lost tomb, neither can resist their curiosity.

In The Hippopotamus Pool, Amelia makes an enemy just as smart as herself. However, thanks to Ramses, Nefret, Evelyn, Walter, and Emerson, who fascinates all women, she overcomes everything. Evelyn and Walter’s marriage is at a difficult time, and they can’t help but bicker all the time. Ramses and Nefret, on the other hand, compete with each other as usual. More precisely, Nefret is dying to show that she is not behind Ramses.

Things change for the better when David joins these two. But David must first prove his loyalty to the family. This rather strange and funny family has so many enemies that they have a hard time trusting people anymore. Of course, they take every precaution they can while the tomb robbers have turned into a very powerful gang in Egypt. However, trouble still haunts them.

The Hippopotamus Pool is an adventurous book. I read it with pleasure as it was very satisfying in terms of both the characters and the story. As in every book, I thought a lot about the mysteries of Ancient Egypt in this one, and of course, I couldn’t help but imagine what it would be like if I were an Egyptologist. If you are looking for a delightful series set in Ancient Egypt, I suggest you checkThe Hippopotamus Pool out. Enjoy!

The Hippopotamus Pool - Elizabeth Peters

The Hippopotamus Pool

The Hippopotamus Pool: What could be more intriguing to Amelia Peabody and her irresistible, irascible husband, Emerson (“the Father of Curses”), than meeting a masked stranger who offers to show them an Egyptian queen’s lost tomb?

The mysterious disappearance of that midnight visitor before he can disclose the secret! Thus begins Amelia’s newest adventure along the Nile:The Hippopotamus Pool. Helped, or hampered, by two teenagers, their son, Ramses, and their beautiful ward, Nefret, the Emersons set sail for Thebes to find the hidden tomb of Queen Tetisheri. With them is a timid (or is she?) governess named Miss Marmaduke. Soon to join the expedition are Amelia’s sister- and brother-in-law, Evelyn and Walter, whose marriage is going through a rocky patch.The Hippopotamus Pool

As usual, archaeology is only one of Amelia’s concerns, as the Emersons encounter murderers, kidnappers, grave robbers and ancient Egyptian curses. The tomb, of course, will hold a stunning surprise. And the Hippopotamus Pool? It’s an ancient Egyptian story of war and wits that Amelia is translating… and that alerts her to a hippo of a different stripe: a nefarious, overweight art dealer who may become her next archenemy.

Or perhaps not – for another nemesis is lurking under the Saharan sun, a master of disguises, a caliph of crime, a veritable vizier of villainy. Will Amelia meet her match inThe Hippopotamus Pool? 

Elizabeth Peters

Barbara Louise Mertz (September 29, 1927 – August 8, 2013) was an American author who wrote under her own name as well as under the pseudonyms Elizabeth Peters and Barbara Michaels. In 1952, she received a PhD in Egyptology from the University of Chicago. While she was best known for her mystery and suspense novels, in the 1960s she authored two books on ancient Egypt, both of which have remained in print ever since.

Barbara Gross was born on September 29, 1927, in Canton, Illinois. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in 1947, a master’s degree in 1950, and a PhD in Egyptology in 1952, having studied with John A. Wilson. She authored two books on ancient Egypt (both of which have been continuously in print since first publication), but primarily wrote mystery and suspense novels. She became a published writer in 1964. She was married to Richard Mertz for 19 years (1950-1969) which ended in divorce. They had two children, Peter and Elizabeth Mertz.

Under the name Barbara Michaels, she wrote primarily gothic and supernatural thrillers. Her publisher chose that pseudonym since Mertz had already published one non-fiction book on ancient Egypt, and the publisher did not want Mertz’s novels to be confused with her academic work. Under the pseudonym Elizabeth Peters, Mertz published mysteries, including her Amelia Peabody historical mystery series, using a nom de plume drawn from the names of her two children.

She was a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of KMT, (“A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt”), Egypt Exploration Society, and the James Henry Breasted Circle of the University of Chicago Oriental Institute. Mertz was also a feminist, a topic that frequently arose in her fiction, and in her professional life. Mertz founded “Malice Domestic”, a Washington-based organization for women mystery writers, “because she thought men were getting all the prizes.” She also started a scholarship for women writers at Hood College. Mertz died at her home in Maryland on August 8, 2013.

Elizabeth Peters

Mertz received a number of award wins and nominations from the mystery community. Her first recognition came when Trojan Gold was nominated for the 1988 Anthony Award in the “Best Novel” category; the following year, Naked Once More won the 1989 Agatha Award in the same category. Following this Mertz earned a series of Agatha Award “Best Novel” nominations, including The Last Camel Died at Noon in 1991; The Snake, the Crocodile, and the Dog in 1992; Night Train to Memphis in 1994; Seeing a Large Cat in 1997; The Ape Who Guards the Balance in 1998; and He Shall Thunder in the Sky in 2000 which also received an Anthony Award “Best Novel” nomination in 2001.

Mertz received a final Agatha Award nomination for “Best Novel” in 2002 for The Golden One and won the “Best Non-fiction Work” the following year for Amelia Peabody’s Egypt: A Compendium, which also received an Edgar Award nomination in 2004 in the “Best Critical / Biographical Work” category.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges: 

Amelia Peabody Series by Elizabeth Peters

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