Travelers Key to Ancient Egypt
didn't realize until after I got home that this is
published by the 'Theosophical Publishing' house.
Theosophy? Ooooh-kay. A bit too new-age for me, but
once I got past the introduction I knew that this
was one of the best reference books for the tombs
and temples of the Nile Valley.
Mr. West is a well-known author of Egyptian history
and touring books (and indeed, at least one tour company
offers a guided tour with Mr. West through the major
sites of Egypt). His coverage of the major temples,
tombs, and pyramids of Egypt is unparalleled - the
detail level is sometimes overwhelming, but he does
it in a simple, straightforward style that makes the
book easy to read.
For each major site, the history is carefully outlined,
its importance is clarified, and then a detailed walk through
of the site (sometimes wall by wall) follows. It's
a wonderfully illuminating tour guide. While the tone
can be a bit absurd sometimes, and it delves a bit too
deeply into the new-age view of the pyramids as celestial
temples, West gives a well-balanced view of the differing
opinions about such topics as the meaning of the pyramids,
the age of the sphinx, and the symbolism of certain
Well worth the price.