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Hand of Isis

Hand of Isis Against the rising power of Rome Egypt is the last and strongest bastion of the Eastern Hellenistic kingdoms Charmian is handmaiden to Cleopatra She is also an oracle gifted with ancient memories th

  • Title: Hand of Isis
  • Author: Jo Graham
  • ISBN: 9780316068017
  • Page: 436
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Against the rising power of Rome, Egypt is the last and strongest bastion of the Eastern Hellenistic kingdoms Charmian is handmaiden to Cleopatra She is also an oracle, gifted with ancient memories that may hold the key to preserving Egypt Through blood and fire, war and peace, love and death, she will face a desperate struggle that will remake the future of the world.

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      Published :2019-05-03T09:39:44+00:00

    1 thought on “Hand of Isis

    1. Hand of Isis is, in a nut shell, about learning what one’s place is in life, and learning to love that life and accept what comes. We are introduced to Charmian who, as with Gull in Black Ships, will take us through the world Jo imagined. And through Charmian, we will meet Cleopatra, Gaius Julius Caesar, Marcus Antonius, and a host of other characters, some of which seem comfortingly familiar… The tale that unfolds will echo in the hearts of everyone who reads the book because we’ve all be [...]

    2. Hand of Isis tells the story of Charmian, a privileged woman growing up in Ancient Egypt while experiencing visions of Isis. It uses the framing device of Charmian posthumously telling her story to the gods of judgement -- in a non-intrusive, non-self-referential fashion.With her sister Iras, Charmian is sister and handmaiden to Queen Cleopatra. She has romantic adventures, friendships, worries, and enacts political machinations. Although well-known historical figures are integral to the plot, t [...]

    3. If I hadn't read Black Ships before this one, I might have given Hand of Isis three stars, but coming after Jo Graham's powerful first novel, this one was a disappointment.I think part of the problem lies in the fact that Cleopatra's story has been told and retold so many times by so many people, it is hard to find an original voice. While Black Ships was revolutionary, Hand of Isis is nothing new.Black Ships was written with a powerful, wistful poignancy; a story about those who have lost every [...]

    4. I got this book through the Librarything Early Review program. I already had the first bookBlack Shipsbut have not read it yet. It is a choice for a RL book group of mine for May.Luckily the books stand alone in the sense that the stories are different. I think some of the previous characters come back via reincarnation, but as different people in this book. I was in no way lost in this book or the overall story arc by not reading book 1 (yet).At the start I found the writing to be OK, but rathe [...]

    5. Charmian is Cleopatra's half-sister; together, she and her sisters pledge to serve the goddess Isis and to make Cleopatra the queen and savior of bankrupted Egypt. Unfortunately, Hand of Isis has a slow start and some heavy-handed religious aspects, so it's not as successful as Graham's first novel, Black Ships. Still, it's a success: a balance of private story and public history, all of it touched by religion and magic, Hand of Isis is a brave historical fantasy retelling which often achieves i [...]

    6. Jo Graham's Hand of Isis is a story of ancient Egypt as seen through the eyes of Charmain, a young handmaiden and half-sister to Cleopatra. Exiled into the Black Lands as girls, Charmain, Cleopatra, and a third sister named Iras, devote themselves to the goddess Isis, vowing to be her hands and avatars on earth, and to love and protect the people of Egypt. Isis rewards the girls for their devotion by setting into motion the events leading to Cleopatra becoming Queen, while Iras and Charmain rema [...]

    7. The Hand of Isis is the story of Cleopatra told through the eyes of her loving sister Charmian. It spans Cleopatra’s life from her birth and childhood to her death.Some people won’t like the sex scenes and the candid way sex was part of the story. However, I found it refreshing. Additionally, including homosexual and bisexual characters made it feel representative of people generally. I loved Charmian’s candid approach towards sex.A significant part of the story involves the Egyptian gods [...]

    8. Hand of Isis, by Jo GrahamI wasn't sure if Graham could top her first novel, "Black Ships," which I enjoyed very much. But "Hand of Isis" was even better, and I liked it five times more, if that's possible. Chairmian is handmaiden and half-sister to Cleopatra, the last great pharaoh of Egypt. While a slave, Chairmian has a remarkable amount of freedom and education, which are testaments to the Egyptian culture of the time. Given as a child to Cleopatra, Chairmian and Iras (also a half-sister to [...]

    9. Synopsis: Set in the desert plains of Egypt, Charmian, the half-sister of the infamous Queen Cleopatra, recounts her life's tale in this epic historical fantasy by Jo Graham. Charmian tells of a sparse childhood being raise by just her mother, who was a servant to the pharaoh. Not knowing that her father was the pharaoh, Charmian is startled when she learns that the Princess Cleopatra is her half-sister. She's even more stunned to learn that she has another half-sister, Iras, and that Iras and C [...]

    10. At first when I started reading Hand of Isis I was thrilled that it read so much like Jo Graham's first book Black of Ships, which I loved. However, soon the similarity in voice began to distract me.Who's head was I in? Sybil's from Black Ships? Or Charmian's from Hand of Isis? There was very little, outside of lifestyle and circumstance, to distinguish between these two characters. I'm at a loss for what to say exactly about the voice because I love it, but I thought Charmian should stand out m [...]

    11. Hand of Isis is the second book in Jo Graham's fascinating series about the ancient world titled Numinous World. I have to admit a mistake here -I actually read book three, Stealing Fire, before Hand of Isis, so I was a little out-of-order when I started this book. Thankfully, the plot lines of each novel are unique enough that it doesn't make a big difference. But I will point out that I think Hand of Isis is the best of the Numinous World books. Seriously -if you think this type of stuff isn't [...]

    12. Another intriguing tale by Jo Graham, this one about the life of Cleopatra, is told by her half-sister and handmaiden, Charmian. We follow Charmian, Cleopatra, and third half-sister Inas through their childhood to maturity, through historical and personal upheaval. As children, the three girls agree to be the "hands of Isis" if Cleopatra is put on the throne, which at the time seems unlikely. Their goal is to preserve the vision of their illustrious ancestors, the Ptolemy's, and to improve the l [...]

    13. Cleopatra is one of the most written about figures in history and I’ve rarely seen a new take on her story. Yet Jo Graham has managed to do this in Hand of Isis by telling the story from the perspective of her half-sister handmaiden, Charmian. As you can probably guess from the blurb, Charmian has special powers that help her half-sister rule Egypt in a time when only men were rulers and this book is a cross between fantasy and historical fiction. Yet this mixture of fantasy and history works [...]

    14. This is the first book I've read by Jo Graham, but it won't be the last. I've got the other two books in this series on my wish list now. Writing a well known story is always tricky, because you can't just rely on the reader's desire to find out what happens to carry them through to the end. In this case, pretty nearly everyone knows the story of Anthony and Cleopatra. It ends badly. Nearly everyone involved dies. Getting the reader to want to stay through to what they already know won't be a ha [...]

    15. This book was another recommendation by my good friend, Tuningmyviola, and I just love her because she recommended and lent this book to me. It’s a book about Cleopatra VII Philopator, the last Pharaoh of the Ptolemaic dynasty. The wars that had to be fought to keep her as ruler of Egypt is mentioned, through letters to Charmian, Cleopatra’s sister and also the teller of this story, but never explained in detail which can I believe can bore even great minds! The reason I enjoyed this book, a [...]

    16. What a remarkable book that had the perfect mix of actual history and a bit of flair from one of my favorite movies, "Cleopatra" with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. The story was told from the point of view of Cleopatra's handmaiden, Charmain, of the childhood and reign of Queen Cleopatra.Constantly, Charmain is challenged in deciding between the fate she promised for herself as a young girl, pledging herself to be a hand of goddess Isis and Cleopatra's protector, and being a lover to a ma [...]

    17. Sequel to Black Ships. The one that recounts the life of Charmian, daughter of a slave and a Pharoah, as she tries to help her half-sister Cleopatra save Alexandria.It's a familiar story, and it's kind of sad to fall in love with multicultural, free, technologically advanced Alexandria knowing it's going to be swallowed up by Rome. I enjoyed Charmian's great freedom, her unconventional relationship, and her devotion to Egypt and Isis. I didn't find her break with Agrippa very convincing, though. [...]

    18. Three sisters, unique, but inseperable wind their way through one of history's greatest stories. From the narrator Charmain, orphan of a pleasure slave and Ptolemy Auletes, Pharoah of Eygpt, we learn how to freely give oneself to all that we love and to open ourselves to love in all its forms. From Iras, we discover that the search for knowledge and the value of freedom can be enough to fulfill us. From Cleopatra, we learn what it must take to rule an empire as a woman.This wonderful account of [...]

    19. Could pass as historical fiction or fantasy as there are mystical elements. I really enjoyed this novel, staying true to the few known facts of Cleopatra's life and using a keen imagination to fill in the rest. The story is told through the viewpoint of the handmaiden, dear friend, and half-sister to Cleopatra, Charmian. Such a luscious name - I love saying it. I know this is Book 2 in the series, and it stands fine on it's own. I have the first in the series, Black Ships, high on my TBR list. T [...]

    20. Story of Cleopatra from her sister/handmaiden's POV. It begins with her in the afterlife, where her heart is being weighed against Maat. She is telling her story to the GodsEnjoyed this book very, very much. I've read novels about Cleopatra's story, but I liked this one the best. Throughout the book the author touches on past life experiences, Celtic, Roman and Egyptian culture, and a smattering of religion. This is her second book, and I am *eagerly* anticipating her third. She's got a great wr [...]

    21. Despite being a sorta sequel to Black ships, it works very well as a stand alone story. (Some moments simply have added gravitas if you've read the previous novel.)It's a good story with surprisingly brisk pacing considering the novel takes place over 37 years, well-drawn characters, an interesting plot and a touch of mysticism, but it doesn't feel like a historical novel. It feels more like a fantasy novel that is set in a time & place resembling the ancient world. I look forward to Graham' [...]

    22. Very good retelling of Cleopatra's tale through the narration of her handmaiden Charmion. Same great style as in Black Ships; my main problem with the book is that it did not transcend its subject sticking to the "known" story with a modern sensibility and a twist of the fantastic here and there. I read too many books about/with Cleopatra and her times to fully enjoy a true and tried story about her, but otherwise the novel is well done and absorbing.

    23. Some Spoilers ahead!!This time around, Gull comes back as a girl, Charmian, who is Cleopatra's half sister and handmaid. So we follow Cleopatra's story through the eyes and ears of her handmaiden. Charmian felt different than Gull and Lydias. She was a girl who enjoyed the company of men, who liked pretty things, who was very proud of serving Cleopatra. Again she found someone who she could follow to the end of the world (first Neas, then Hephaistion/Ptolemy, and now Cleopatra-who is Ptolemy) - [...]

    24. ***Let me just say that 3* for me is a very respectable score, just falling short of "outstanding" (4*) or "I'm so obsessed I've read it till I can quote it backwards" (5*)***With Hand of Isis I admit I went about this the wrong way in reading it before Black Ships(which I've not actually read), so for me the references to the previous lives the main character Charmion merely served to convolute the story a bit. (My fault for not researching the book and its prequels, oops.)Not to say that I did [...]

    25. I don't remember crying the first time I read this book, but I sure bawled at the end the second time. I enjoyed this book much more than the first two in the series, particularily her strength and memories of her past lives.

    26. Told from the POV of Cleopatra's handmaidens who were discovered in the tomb with her and braved the bite of the cobra with their queen so they could serve her in death! Didn't want this book to end!

    27. 3.75 stars.I bought Hand of Isis on impulse two or three years ago, then promptly forgot about it and, even when I did remember I had it, I wasn't really sure I wanted to read it. This year, luckily, I got in an Ancient Egypt-mood, and I finally decided to pick it up.Overall Hand of Isis was a very enjoyable read. I thought the setting was especially well done: while it was very descriptive and detailed, it didn't feel too dense, and it truly gave a sense of the historical period. There were als [...]

    28. How did we end up hereBack when Borders was liquidating their stock, I trolled their shelves looking for anything that may catch my eye because, you know, cheap books. Who doesn’t like cheap books? At the time I hadn’t quite given in to the call of the romance section so I most likely found this one in the sci-fi/fantasy area just kind of hanging out. It’s set in ancient Egypt, you say? Cleopatra is all up in this? Yes, please.Ancient Egypt is just too much of a draw for me to pass up.It f [...]

    29. I decided to read this book because I read Black Ships and liked it enough to want to continue the series. Believe it or not this is the first historical fiction book I have read based on Cleopatra. I have read Michelle Moran's Nefertiti, The Heretic Queen and Cleopatra's Daughter, so I have experience with Egyptian historical fiction, but despite all the historical fiction based on Cleopatra out there this is my first. I liked Black Ships better than this book. I guess the journey aspect of Bla [...]

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