Robertson, John M. (2001) Rape the Two Egypts. (Book design and typesetting: David Allen) Victoria: Trafford Publishing. ISBN 1-55212-744-3 (423 pages) softcover US$26.95 CAN$38.50.
Using the tradition of higher criticism, John Robertson's fiction explores Egypt from the time of Joseph's slavery to the beginning of Exodus. His story offers explanations for monotheism, circumcision, Egyptian use of horses and chariots, and the plagues of Egypt among other things. For good measure he adds some twists in the genealogies of both the patriarchs and pharaohs.
The scope of material is impressive. His explanation of events comes across as possible within the context of the novel. He made me believe he had firsthand knowledge of the setting. His impressive list of references shows the depth of his research. Those who want to do follow-up research of their own will wish for full bibliographical information for the resources he cites.
In dealing with such a scope of history, John has left himself with many characters to develop. I found them indistinguishable and anachronistic in their relationships.
The plot is stronger than the characterization; if you enjoy a plot, this book will intrigue.
©2003 Audrey Owen