The Mummy Smugglers of Crumblin Castle


Publication Date: 1 Jul. 2020
Format: Paperback / softback

ISBN 9781760651930

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    A crumbling castle, a moat full of crocodiles, a catastrophe of kittens, and let’s not forget the villains and the mummies! This rambunctious story has it all.


    It's England, 1873. When 12-year-old Hatshepsut (Hattie) Lambton’s guardian is unfortunately eaten by a crocodile, Hattie is sent to live with hitherto unknown relatives: Great-uncle Sisyphus and Great-aunt Iphigenia, in their half-ruined castle in mysterious, mist-shrouded marshes. Hattie discovers Great-aunt Iphigenia is an Egyptologist who conducts Mummy Unwrapping Parties at the houses of wealthy clients. The Parties are managed by her two assistants, the sinister (and, to Hattie, highly suspect) Edgar and Edwina Raven. Soon, a problem arises. It has become illegal to export mummies from Egypt. The solution? To set out on a one-thousand-mile voyage up the Nile, to acquire – and illegally export – mummies for the Unwrapping Parties. There, Hattie makes a friend, Amal, who has problems of her own. Already, Hattie has had doubts about whether it is Right to destroy the bodies of ancient Egyptians. But there’s no way the Ravens will allow the Unwrappings to be discontinued. They have a nice little racket set up. They threaten Hattie – and Great-uncle Sisyphus. Hattie knows they’re serious. Dead serious. Back in England, Hattie finds herself on a desperate dash to a famous London museum, with a very special, heavily disguised Egyptian mummy in her arms. And the Ravens hot on her trail. Will her quest to preserve the mummy’s eternal existence in the after-life be successful?

    Information

    Book Type: Junior Chapter
    Age Group: 8 years +
    Traffic Lights:
    Class Novel: No
    Good Reads Rating: 5/5
    Literary Rating: 5/5

    Review

    This rip-roaringly fun story will give readers a basic lesson on Egyptology and antiquarianism. Set in late Victorian England, it's jam-packed full of Egyptian artefacts, mummies, tomb robbers and scoundrels, and even an Egyptian god.

    Twelve-year-old Hattie comes from a long line of Egyptologists. Orphaned as a child, she resides with her great aunt and uncle in the dilapidated family estate of Crumblin Castle. To make ends meet, her Great Aunt Iphigenia hosts mummy unwrapping parties for wealthy clients. Her Great Uncle Sisyphus is an expert in hieroglyphics. Aunt Iphigenia is assisted by the Ravens, mysterious siblings who Hattie immediately dislikes.

    When their cache of mummies is used up and they can procure no more in England, they must venture to Egypt to secure a supply. However, the Egyptian authorities have cracked down on the export of all antiquities, so they resort to smuggling the remains. What follows is a grand trip through Egypt and along the Nile visiting famous sites. Along the way, Hattie gathers evidence of the Ravens' wrongdoing and also helps to change Great Aunt Iphigenia's viewpoint on the unwrappings.

    A well-written, entertaining and enthralling read, which keeps the reader absorbed through many twists and turns.

    Themes

    Egypt/Egyptology, antiquarianism, ancient cultures, archaeology, mummies, study, hieroglyphics, family intuition, embezzlement, travel, friendship

    Content Notes

    Not applicable.

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