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Sex on Earth: A Celebration of Animal Reproduction
Jules Howard

Mara, Daughter of the Nile (Puffin Story Books)

Mara, Daughter of the Nile - Eloise Jarvis McGraw Mara, Daughter of the Nile was an enjoyable read and overall I enjoyed McGraw's writing. However, I was a bit turned off by the very anti-Hatshepsut sentiment of the novel despite Mara being a double spy. I would have thought the novel would play both sides but instead it focused almost entirely on the anti-Hatshepsut camp and spy dealings. There really is little evidence as far as I am concerned to back up the villainous way in which Hatshepsut came across.

Our main character, Mara, is a strong character and I genuinely liked her. I did question how she was instantaneously able to come up with excuses or scenarios while fooling those around her so effectively, however. Her relationship with the Canaan princess was nice and overall I would say McGraw wrote strong female characters. However, the weakest aspect of the book for me was the supposed romance. I never really understood the relationship as very little was expressed and then suddenly they are in love. This, along with a few other scenarios (such as the swift ending regarding Hatshepsut) were a bit unlikely to me.

There were some historical inaccuracies or general stretching of history in addition to language that felt more in line with the 1950s when it was written than Ancient Egypt, but overall they did not impact my enjoyment very much. One of my favorite aspects of the book was the way in which McGraw described the land and the sights, I often felt like I was there. Overall I enjoyed Daughter of the Nile with my only major complaint being the anti-Hatshepsut nature of it.