Stephanie Thornton is a writer and history teacher who has been obsessed with infamous women from ancient history since she was twelve. Her previous novel is The Secret History. She lives with her husband and daughter in Alaska.
Egypt, 1400s BC. The pharaoh’s pampered second daughter, lively, intelligent Hatshepsut, delights in racing her chariot through the marketplace and testing her archery skills in the Nile’s marshlands. But the death of her elder sister, Neferubity, in a gruesome accident arising from Hatshepsut’s games forces her to confront her guilt...and sets her on a profoundly changed course.
Hatshepsut enters a loveless marriage with her half brother, Thut, to secure his claim to the Horus Throne and produce a male heir. But it is another of Thut’s wives, the commoner Aset, who bears him a son, while Hatshepsut develops a searing attraction for his brilliant adviser Senenmut. And when Thut suddenly dies, Hatshepsut becomes de facto ruler, as regent to her two-year-old nephew.
Once, Hatshepsut anticipated being free to live and love as she chose. Now she must put Egypt first. Ever daring, she will lead a vast army and build great temples, but always she will be torn between the demands of leadership and the desires of her heart. And even as she makes her boldest move of all, her enemies will plot her downfall....
Once again, Stephanie Thornton brings to life a remarkable woman from the distant past whose willingness to defy tradition changed the course of history.
Praise for The Secret History:
“What a heroine! Her rise from street urchin to emperor’s consort made me want to stand up and cheer.” —Kate Quinn, author of Empress of the Seven Hills
“Theodora’s dramatic tale is exquisitely crafted in this can’t miss summer read. I couldn’t put it down for a moment.”—San Francisco Book Review
“If there is one book you choose to read on ancient times, let it be The Secret History.”—Historical Novel Society
“A remarkable first novel...sprawling and irresistible.” —Jeane Westin, author of The Spymaster’s Daughter
“Thornton’s well-conceived and engrossing tale exalts a historical figure of ‘true grit.’”—Library Journal
“A fascinating and vivid account…the life of the Empress Theodora leaps from the page, as colorful and complex as the woman herself.”—Michelle Diener, author of The Emperor’s Conspiracy