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December 19, 2010

The Egypt Game

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The Egypt Game

The Egypt Game


Author: Zilpha Keatley Snyder


Page Length: 215


Reading Level: 6.6


Genre: Fiction

PLOT SUMMARY: April Hall has just moved in with her grandmother. At first, Melanie isn’t sure the two of them will have anything in common, but April is the only other girl her age in the building. It isn’t long before they both discover that they love anything that has to do with Ancient Egypt. They simply can’t learn enough about the ancient gods, goddesses, and ceremonies. Soon, April and Melanie discover an empty storage shed behind the antique shop and the Egypt game begins. The girls begin to plan elaborate rituals and create fancy costumes. The game is in full swing when tragedy strikes the neighborhood. Allowed to play only indoors, the girls begin to wonder if their created ancient Egypt is gone forever. Yet, it isn’t long until the game is going strong and they are joined by more ancient Egyptians. Everything is great until one dark night when two of them find themselves all alone, with danger lurking in the darkness, and no other Egyptians around … it may just be the end of the Egypt game forever.

REVIEW: This book is a Newberry Honor Book. The characters are well developed and the story is pretty engaging. For a student who loves Ancient Egyptian history and stories, this book would be highly recommended. Woven within the story are also some significant issues. April’s been sent to her grandmother as her mother marries and worries about her acting career (putting her own needs over her daughters). The professor who owns the antique shop is being persecuted as strange and suspect based on his anti-social behaviors. A disturbed man is on the loose and is killing children. There are plenty of plot twists and turns to entertain the reader – though most occur in the latter half of the story.

AREAS FOR TEACHING: making predictions, cause and effect, inferences, character analysis and motivations, connecting text to historical events, connecting text to other text, sequence of events, author’s purpose

TOUCHY AREAS-PAGES: April’s feelings of loss because her mother sent her away, the theme of loss and depression, murder

RELATED BOOKS: The Headless Cupid, The Witches of Worm, The Trespassers, Cat Running, The Gypsy Game, Soapy and the Pharaoh’s Curse, The Pyramid Builder

MOVIE, MUSIC, ART CONNECTIONS: Night at the Museum – Smithsonian, “The Ramses Collection”


REVIEWED BY: Dayna Taylor



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