The Visitors

The Visitors

Hardback

By (author) Sally Beauman

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  • Publisher: Little, Brown
  • Format: Hardback | 544 pages
  • Dimensions: 163mm x 236mm x 44mm | 840g
  • Publication date: 6 February 2014
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0751551678
  • ISBN 13: 9780751551679
  • Illustrations note: Illustrated endpapers
  • Sales rank: 426,440

Product description

Under the tablecloth, Frances's hand reached for mine and clasped it. I knew what it meant, that clasp and the mischievous grateful glance that accompanied it: it meant I was thanked, that there were secrets here. I could accept that. I too had secrets - who doesn't? Sent abroad to Egypt in 1922 to recover from the typhoid that killed her mother, eleven-year-old Lucy is caught up in the intrigue and excitement that surrounds the obsessive hunt for Tutankhamun's tomb. As she struggles to comprehend an adult world in which those closest to her are often cold and unpredictable, Lucy longs for a friend she can love. When she meets Frances, the daughter of an American archaeologist, her life is transformed. As the two girls spy on the grown-ups and try to understand the truth behind their evasions, a lifelong bond is formed. Haunted by the ghosts of her past, the mistakes she made and the secrets she kept, Lucy disinters her past, trying to make sense of what happened all those years ago in Cairo and the Valley of the Kings. And for the first time in her life, she comes to terms with what happened after Egypt, when Frances needed Lucy most.

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Author information

Sally Beauman was born in Devon and graduated from Girton College, Cambridge. She began her career as a critic and writer for New York magazine and continued to write for leading periodicals in America and the UK after returning to England. In 1970 she was the first recipient of the Catherine Pakenham Award for her journalism, and at the age of 24 edited Queen magazine. She has written for the New Yorker, The Sunday Times and the Telegraph Magazine, where she was Arts Editor. Sally's novels have been translated into over twenty languages and are bestsellers worldwide.

Review quote

Colourful and fast-paced, this chunky but highly readable novel offers plenty of intrigue and an interesting portrait of the adult world, as seen through a child's enquiring eyes. The Lady A great big beast of a saga with plenty of costume drama, celebrities, glamorous locations, spooks and murders. It's Death on the Nile meets Downton Abbey, as the action moves between Highclere Castle and Egypt's Valley of the Kings ... A gripping story touching on friendship, scholarship, love and family -- Wendy Holden Daily Mail A vivid portrait of Howard Carter emerges from this fictionalised story of his quest to uncover the tomb of the boy-king ... Set in Egypt in the 1920s and London in the present day, this hugely readable novel tells the story of Carter's long years of toil in the Valley of the Kings through the eyes of a 10-year-old English girl ... And above it all floats the gold deathmask of King Tut himself, endlessly touring the world's museums Guardian Fusing historical fact with dollops of fiction, The Visitors is an engrossing epic that wears its research lightly ... The powerful backdrop of the curse of Tutankhamun adds a dark dimension of historical intrigue to a page-turning tale Metro Set in Egypt in the 1920s, where high-society gaiety sits uneasily alongside rising political tension, The Visitors centres on the discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb, as seen through the eyes of 11-year-old Lucy ... A beautifully written novel, a tale of intertwined lives that is at once powerful and haunting. Beauman maintains the tension surrounding the tomb's discovery, even for those who know the outcome and ... the story of Lucy's blossoming into adulthood is lingeringly affecting Sunday Times This book contains all the traditional elements of a women's blockbuster: a Cinderella-style, love-deprived heroine; a beautiful, promiscuous woman with neglected but adoring children; an exotic setting as well as plenty of travel, and a certain amount of mystery. But Sally Beauman is far too skilful to follow a formula and her version of what went on in the Valley of the Kings between the wars sticks closely to the recorded facts -which are, of course, quite as exciting as any a novelist could invent ... Interesting, unusual and informative, it is greatly enjoyable -- Jessica Mann Literary Review Praise for Sally Beauman: Compelling, absorbing, captivating, haunting ... ambitious and imaginative -- Elaine Showalter Praise for Rebecca's Tale: Bold and clever ... In this evocative and compulsive reworking of the balance of power between the sexes, Sally Beauman steers her creation into feminist territory and succeeds in overturning our loyalties -- Elizabeth Buchan The Times Praise for Sally Beauman: Once you start reading a Beauman book, you can't put it down -- Linda Grant Guardian English novelist Beauman beautifully describes the languorous lifestyles of Brits and Americans wealthy enough to indulge their passion for unearthing Egypt's ancient treasures Courier Mail, Brisbane Read every line of this stupendous novel Country Style, Australia