“The suspense of the story, aided by sly hints from the author, and the atmosphere of a dark, claustrophobic tomb work together to create a scary story. The characters’ fear invites the reader into the world to experience the fright themselves.”
— Booklist Starred Review
Deep inside the tomb exists a hidden world of wonder and terror.
In 1935, British archaeologists vanished inside an Egyptian cave. A year later, one man returned covered in mysterious scars.
Egyptologist Imogen Riley desperately wants to know what happened to the ill-fated expedition led by her grandfather. On a quest for answers, she joins a team of archeologists and soldiers in Egypt. Inside a mountain tomb, they’ve found a technologically advanced relic and a maze of tunnels. Dr. Nathan Trummel believes this tomb leads to the most guarded secrets of the pharaohs. When the explorers venture deep into the caves, they discover a hidden world of wonder and terror.
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Moreland (The Devil's Wood) delves into Ancient Egyptian secrets in this suspenseful but underwhelming adventure tale. In the 1930s, British explorer Harlan Riley is driven mad by what he finds in the tomb Nebenteru, leaving his adult granddaughter, Imogen, an Egyptologist, desperate for answers. She accompanies Dr. Nathan Trummel, her former lover, and photographer Caleb Beckett, to Egypt to retrace her grandfather's expedition to the tomb. There they find a technologically advanced relic amid a cavern of horrors that may be the pathway to the underworld. Their discoveries will change the course of history, if only they can make it out alive. Though Moreland's tale is nicely paced and laced with palpable tension, the characters hew too closely to type: Imogen is the plucky heroine, fighting against 1930s sexism; Trummel is the self-important, pompous academic; and Caleb is the dashing, sensitive artist who wins Imogen over with his thoughtfulness. Horror fans will be pleased as the terrors of the tomb force each character to confront a past trauma, but the final reveal of the tomb's secrets is predictable. For those familiar with the genre, this will feel like a retread.