Secrets of Tut's Tomb and the Pyramids by Stephanie Ann Reiff. (US) - OUT OF PRINT
CPI Weird World
Finished: Feb. 26, 2012
First Published: 1977
Publisher: Raintree Children's Books
Genre: Children, Non-fiction, History, Paranormal
First sentence: "Imagine lifting enough stone blocks to build a wall running from Los Angeles to New York City."
Publisher's Summary: "Discusses the building of the Egyptian pyramids, the finding of King Tut's Tomb, strange stories associated with them, and possible powers possessed by pyramids."
Acquired: Bought a used copy from my local library's book sale table.
Reason for Reading: Bit of a story... When I was a kid, my library had this whole series and I was into all this paranormal stuff back then. I remember this book, as well as others, from the series, quite fondly. Someone on LibraryThing has taken the time to add the entire series with pictures and I brought this book home as a bit of a memento from my childhood.
While studying Egypt, I read this aloud to ds, thinking the finding of Tut's tomb along with the story of the curse would be fun for him.
First of all, this book is not a literary winner. Written in simple, stilted language, it is not exactly a winner of a book. The first few chapters discuss the pyramids (Giza in particular) how they were made and why. Of course, the book leaves off a lot of factual information so it can produce an aura of mystery around them. Fortunately, I have the information to fill in the obvious blanks and even my son has gained some knowledge up to this point to do so as well. What was fun, and ds thought absolutely crazy!, was the book bringing up the possibilities that the pyramids may have been built through levitation or the help of UFOs! Near the end is a chapter on the pyramidal shape itself and all the 1970s mumbo-jumbo about the magical powers of pyramids. Remember when they were all the rage? You could by pyramid kits for healing or pyramid necklaces, etc. Well I skipped reading that chapter to the ds, but did read it myself.
What this book was good for, and why I give it two stars, is that it's middle chapter, the longest in the entire book, gives a very entertaining narrative on the finding of Tut's Tomb. Right from the frustrating first attempts to the final finding of the burial chamber and the subsequent deaths of those on the party, bringing forth the contemporary hysteria over the tomb's "curse". The book is also profusely illustrated with mostly colour (some b/w) photographs. Not a book I'd normally own, let alone read, but it was on hand and sufficed to tell the Tut story. Otherwise, for the meantime, I'll keep it as a souvenir as a reminder of this part of my childhood.