This monumental historical novel about ancient Egypt depicts highly turbulent period at the end of 18th dynasty of Egypt (14th century BC).
The novel is a first-person narration by Sinuhe, an Egyptian physician to Pharaoh Akhenaton.
The novel is conceptually divided in three parts. First part is mostly about Sinuhe's travel to Syria, Babylon, Mitanni, Hittite Kingdom and Crete.
Second part tells the story of Pharaoh Akhenaton. It was this Pharaoh who introduced a monotheistic cult of Aton. When I was reading this part of the novel it was obvious to me that the author makes connection between Aton cult and its resemblance to early christian philosophy practiced in 1st century AD.
Moreover, according to novel, Pharaoh Akhenaton even tried to transform Egyptian society into class-less society, very similar to what ordinarily are thought of Communist and Marxist societies.
As expected such radical ideas were not welcomed by Egyptian upper classes and in the end, Pharaoh Akhenaton was forced to commit suicide.
Third part of the novel tells the story following Pharaoh Akhenaton's death. It depicts brief reign of young Pharaoh Tutankhamon (whose original name was Tutankhaton) and the novel ends with Pharaoh Horemheb and the beginning of 19th dynasty (e.g. Ramses II).
This is quite long novel but though occasionally it is boring overall it is well written and interesting to read.
posted by David Usharauli