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The Egyptologist: A Novel The Egyptologist: A Novel by Arthur Phillips

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This book was an infuriating read. Not for the writing, which was convincing, but for the two main characters.

The basic premise of the book, which is written as a series of letters, primarily between the two main characters, but with a few thrown in from other characters, is of one man’s search for the tomb of an Egyptian king and another man’s search for a missing man that leads him to the Egyptian explorer.

The Egyptologist is Ralph Trilipush and the private investigator looking for him is Harold Ferrell. What bugged me about both men is that they were both egotistical, completely full of themselves, and neither one was reliable. Trilipush was far too willing to fudge data on his excavation and Ferrell leaped to all manner of unwarranted conclusions during his investigations. If I met either one of them at a party, they wouldn’t get ten minutes of my time. Mid-way through the book, I was so disgusted by their cockiness that I wanted to mimic the character Margaret from the book and tell them, “Don’t be a bore!”

Could I put the book down, though? Absolutely not. I had to find out what happened to these guys, in spite of their boorishness. The author, Arthur Phillips, delivered a surprise in the end that made the read worth my impatience with the characters’ behavior.

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