Out of the Black Land

  • by Kerry Greenwood
  • Narrated by Paul Garcia, Emily Bauer
  • 17 hrs and 0 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Egypt during the 18th dynasty is peaceful and prosperous under the joint rule of the pharaohs Amenhotep III and IV—until the younger pharaoh begins to dream new and terrifying dreams.
Ptah-hotep, a young peasant boy studying to be a scribe, wants to live a simple life in a hut on the Nile River with his lover Kheperren and their dog Wolf—until Amenhotep IV appoints him as royal scribe. How long will Ptah-hotep survive there, surrounded by bitterly envious rivals and enemies?
The child princess Mutnodjme sees her beautiful sister Nefertiti married off to the impotent young Amenhotep. But Nefertiti must bear royal children, so the ladies of the court devise a shocking plan.
Kheperren, meanwhile, serves as scribe to the daring teenage general Horemheb. But while the pharaoh’s shrinking army guards the land of the Nile from enemies on every border, a far greater menace impends, for the newly renamed Akhnaten, not content with his own devotion to one god alone, plans to suppress the worship of all other gods in the Black Land.
Members of his horrified court soon realize that the pharaoh is not merely deformed but irretrievably mad and that the biggest danger to the empire is within the royal palace itself.


What the Critics Say

"Australian author Greenwood, having made a name for herself with the lighthearted Phryne Fisher series, succeeds brilliantly with this gripping thriller set in ancient Egypt…The author is especially good at conveying the nitty-gritty details of life at the time." (Publishers Weekly)
"Three young people living in the time of Egypt’s eighteenth dynasty become a force to be reckoned with…. As powerful forces fight for control, the fate of the nation hangs in the balance. From the often wildly differing conclusions of professional Egyptologists, Greenwood, best known for her mysteries, has fashioned a fascinating, plausible, and erotic tale." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Greenwood takes readers deep into the heart of ancient Egypt, making them wonder—much like Ptah-hotep does—if they will come out the other side intact. While some may argue that this story leans more toward historical fiction than mystery, the intricacies of the court and those who serve it hold more than their share of intrigue and suspense." (Library Journal)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

False Advertising or an Honest Mistake?

This book should be called "Out of the Black Land - A Historical Romance Novel"

Yes, Kerry Greenwood is a well known mystery writer (I happen to be a fan of her Phryne series which is set in the 1920s). So, when I read the title of this book, I assumed that it is a detective story that's set in the Ancient Egypt. So, I kept on waiting for a crime to happen & an investigation to begin but none of them ever happened because the novel is not a mystery novel.

I love Kerry Greenwood's works; but, I'm not a historical romance fan. So, this book isn't something I want to read. But, I'm sure that many historical romance fans might love it.

Not all historical romance fans are mystery novel fans & vice versa. And, just because Kerry Greenwood is best known for her fun detective novels, it doesn't mean that she will never write any book in a different genre.

This book's inaccurate label/title doesn't do anyone any good:
- Historical romance fans (who might enjoy this book) might never read this book (in other words, this book won't be able to reach many of its ideal customers/consumers)
- Mystery novels readers who dislike romance novels won't like this book
- Disappointed readers might return this book and will not rate this book highly
I know I will never listen to this audio book again.
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- r4punz3ll3


I thought I was buying a fictional account of Egypt's Nubian Queen Nefertiti. Why the author thought the book would be better as told by Nefertiti's sister, I'll never know. Since it is FICTION which much allowed literary license, why wasn't the story be from Nefertiti's point of view? At least we would know her thoughts, feelings, aspirations, and/or disappointments. Instead we are forced to listen to a muddled mess of fictional conjecture on the part of the sister! ("Fictional conjecture"? Isn't that an oxymoron of some kind?) I don't know how this book got 4 stars. I love Kerry Greenwood's "Phryne Fisher" series. But this book, a leap to far from her comfort zone, is a hot mess! Not only must we wade through the unfortunate choice of primary storyteller, there's a "whole 'nother" plot line about two gay scribes. REALLY?!? I have no problems with same sex partnering, whether it's for fun or a serious commitment. But this sidebar is an insult to gay and lesbians everywhere!! It's entirely too gratuitously graphic and the sex scenes serve no purpose. Finally, the plot line (whatever it is) gets bogged down by paragraphs of Egyptian history and folklore and names of people and gods which sound as if they were all lifted from Wikipedia!! Don't waste your money or credit on this amateurish attempt at historical fiction.
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- Linda Lou "OCD over books, listening to 1 a day; ANY genre, fact & fiction. Influenced by Audible reviewers so I keep mine unbiased - FRONT to BLACK!"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-01-2013
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.