The Oasis (Lord of the Two Lands)

Written by Pauline Gedge
Review by Suzanne Crane

In this, Volume 2 of Pauline Gedge’s Lords of Two Lands Trilogy, the struggle of Egypt’s native nobilty to overthrow the reigning Hyskos continues. Led by the diminished House of Tau, the shattered forces of slain Prince Seqenenra are regathered and fight in the cause of his son, Kamose. This princely family had been persecuted and humiliated by the Hyskos Pharoah to the point where rebellion is the only option for survival. Supported by his proud family and loyal fighting Medjays, Kamose heads north to try to surprise and conquer his enemies for his family’s survival and Egypt’s restored glory.

Pauline Gedge, already famous for her wonderful novels set in ancient Egypt, focuses her interest on a less well-known time in Egypt’s long history. It is a period where the Pharoahs are not of true Egyptian blood, but are descendants of the much-maligned conquering invaders known as the Hyskos. In the eyes of usurped princes, the Hyskos kings are a travesty of Pharonic splendor and an abomination to the Gods and Maat (Justice).

Gedge concentrates on Prince Kamose who, fueled by hatred for the foreign rulers who have persecuted his family, killed his father and made a farce of Egypt’s dignity, must now become the rebel leader in the name of survival. The horrors of civil war and the brutal choices young Kamose must make are more lethal to his well-being than any sword thrust could be. However, Gedge paints an intricate picture of a warrior who overcomes the contentious in-fighting of his followers with the love and determination of his family, and who battles for the restoration of Egypt’s glory and Maat.

Pauline Gedge’s newest novel is a compelling new addition and is highly recommended.