Sunday, October 25, 2009

Cleopatra's Daughter Review!

Title: Cleopatra's Daughter
Author: Michelle Moran
Publisher: Crown
Publication Date: September 15, 2009 
Pages: 448
My Edition: Hardback
Reading Level: Young Adult/Adult
here I got it: Michelle and Random House 

Summary from Michelle's website:
The marriage of Marc Antony and Cleopatra is one of the greatest love stories of all time, a tale of unbridled passion with earth-shaking political consequences. Feared and hunted by the powers in Rome, the lovers choose to die by their own hands as the triumphant armies of Antony’s vengeful rival, Octavian, sweep into Egypt.  Their three orphaned children are taken in chains to Rome, but only two—the ten-year-old twins Selene and Alexander—survive the journey. Delivered to the household of Octavian’s sister, the siblings cling to each other and to the hope that they will return one day to their rightful place on the throne of Egypt. As they come of age, they are buffeted by the personal ambitions of Octavian’s family and court, by the ever-present threat of slave rebellion, and by the longings and desires deep within their own hearts.
The fateful tale of Selene and Alexander is brought brilliantly to life in Cleopatra’s Daughter.  Recounted in Selene’s youthful and engaging voice, it introduces a compelling cast of historical characters:
Octavia: the emperor Octavian’s kind and compassionate sister, abandoned by Marc Antony for Cleopatra
Livia: Octavian’s bitter and jealous wife
Marcellus: Octavian’s handsome, flirtatious nephew and heir-apparent
Tiberius: Livia’s sardonic son and Marcellus’s great rival for power
Juba: Octavian’s ever-watchful aide, whose honored position at court has far-reaching effects on the lives of the young Egyptian royals
Selene’s narrative is animated by the concerns of a young girl in any time and place  —the possibility of finding love, the pull of friendship and family, and the pursuit of her unique interests and talents. While coping with the loss of both her family and her ancestral kingdom, Selene must find a path around the dangers of a foreign land. Her accounts of life in Rome are filled with historical details that vividly capture both the glories and horrors of the time. She dines with the empire’s most illustrious poets and politicians, witnesses the creation of the Pantheon, and navigates the colorful, crowded marketplaces of the city where Roman-style justice is meted out with merciless authority.
Based on meticulous research, Cleopatra’s Daughter is a fascinating portrait of Imperial Rome and of the people and events of this glorious and tumultuous period in human history. Emerging from the shadows of history, Selene, a young woman of irresistible charm and preternatural intelligence, will capture your heart. 

Review *minor spoiler alert*: 
Wow, I loved Cleopatra's Daughter so much! The characters make you just fall in love with the story, and I felt such a bind to Selene and Alexander when they become orphaned and taken from their beloved kingdom. You will feel for them as the their little brother dies and left as the only remaining Ptolemy heirs. Even though I knew little of the history the story wasn't very hard to understand. Michelle Moran explains everything (list of characters, glossary, and list of events) so perfectly you don't really have to know anything of the history. 

The ending was very sad, but then becomes very happy. I cried a little towards the end, but I won't say I don't ruin the story for you. I loved and hated many characters throughout the book which says a lot about the greatness of the writing. Even though the main character Selene is only 12 in the beginning, she never acts that young, and it never seems like you are reading about a child. At the end, she turns 15 and has her perfect ending. I can't wait to read other books by Michelle Moran. She made this Historical Novel fun to read and I wish it had never ended!


1 comment:

  1. I just finished this last night and I fell in love with the book! I hope to have my review out as soon as I can form coherent thoughts about it lol

    Great review!


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