Wednesday, November 17, 2021

The Good Kings: Absolute Power in Ancient Egypt and the Modern World by Kara Cooney

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)

about book:

Written in the tradition of historians like Mary Beard and Stacy Schiff who find modern lessons in ancient history, this provocative narrative explores the lives of five remarkable pharaohs who ruled Egypt with absolute power, shining a new light on the country's 3,000-year empire and its meaning today.

In a new era when democracies around the world are threatened or crumbling, best-selling author Kara Cooney turns to five ancient Egyptian pharaohs--Khufu, Senwosret III, Akenhaten, Ramses II, and Taharqa--to understand why many so often give up power to the few, and what it can mean for our future.

As the first centralized political power on earth, the pharaohs and their process of divine kingship can tell us a lot about the world's politics, past and present. Every animal-headed god, every monumental temple, every pyramid, every tomb, offers extraordinary insight into a culture that combined deeply held religious beliefs with uniquely human schemes to justify a system in which one ruled over many.

From Khufu, the man who built the Great Pyramid at Giza as testament to his authoritarian reign, and Taharqa, the last true pharaoh who worked to make Egypt great again, we discover a clear lens into understanding how power was earned, controlled, and manipulated in ancient times. And in mining the past, Cooney uncovers the reason why societies have so willingly chosen a dictator over democracy, time and time again.

my thoughts:

Egyptian history is fascinating and so much fun to learn about. In this epic new book by Kara Cooney, we learn about five ancient pharaohs and the history of their politics and culture. Cooney also chooses five modern world leaders to compare with these five ancient pharaohs. Talk about an unputdownable read!

Cooney's writing about these ancient kings is superb. She writes history like a story, pulling you in and taking you along on a journey through the past. You can't help but get caught up in the culture, the people, and these men. It is truly a treat to read. I found myself easily imagining the world they lived in and the ways in which they ruled. And, I couldn't help but find myself wanting to learn more. Such a great book!

I would happily recommend The Good Kings to fans of Egyptian history and to anyone looking for their great next read - this book will provide you with plenty of food for thought. What a treat!

Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!

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