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THE EGYPTOLOGIST WAS ON 12 2004 BEST FICTION LISTS

Los Angeles Times
San Francisco Chronicle
Washington Post
Christian Science Monitor
Detroit Free Press
People Magazine
San Jose Mercury News
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Salt Lake Tribune
Barnes & Noble
Borders Books
The National Book Critics Circle

and Stephen King's "My Top 10 Books of 2006"

A wildly pleasurable, dazzling reading experience, big in heart and execution: crazed, ecstatic, and entertaining in the deepest sense of the word.  Arthur Phillips is a terrifically talented writer, and these pages overflow with wit, mad humor, and, finally, a deep undercurrent of pathos. 

– George Saunders, author of CivilWarLand in Bad Decline and Pastoralia

[In The Egyptologist], you don't read between the lines; you live between them....Readers will be crazed to get to the next page.

– Kyle Smith, People (Four Stars - Critic's Choice)

An astonishing imagination...Literally and literarily fabulous....The Egyptologistis a work of remarkable dimension, a tale as deep as it is tall.

– Carlo WolffAtlanta Journal-Constitution

The Egyptologist is nothing like Phillips's bestselling debut, Prague, and yet it's full of all the dazzling talent he showed there....Scathingly funny. 

– Ron CharlesChristian Science Monitor

Tragic, pathetic, blackly funny...and with a strange, growing undercurrent of horror. You have never read a novel like it. 

– Stephen King, author of The Shining, Carrie, et al.

The Egyptologist is a wonder, a work of imaginative prowess that more than fulfills the promise of Prague.  It's ambitious.  It's inventive.  It's challenging....What remains perfectly clear...is Phillips' rapid ascension as a novelist of complexity, depth, and vast imagination.

– Andrew Roe, San Francisco Chronicle (Editors' Recommendation)


I’ll be reading Arthur Phillip’s wonderful comic novel/detective story The Egyptologist for a second time, because the scattered clues only make sense in the last few pages.

– Sir Christopher Frayling, The Guardian (U.K.)

 

Some of the most amusingly unreliable narrators you'll find in literature....Bears the mark of a deliciously devious imagination....[The Egyptologist] offers a king's bounty of lively, sparkling conceptions and misconceptions.

– Heller McAlpin, Los Angeles Times


Phillips pulls off [the narrative] triumphantly. The book is a tour de force of plotting and narrative technique...one of the most horrendously, hideously humorous endings in modern fiction. It...will knock you out.

– Barbara Mertz (author Elizabeth Peters), Washington Post

One of the year's best.

– Entertainment Weekly (The Must List)

Phillips's wildly inventive second novel is hard to resist....Phillips's pitch-perfect ventriloquism is a wonder....Phillips triumphs.

– Anderson Tepper, Time Out New York

Sophisticated and deliciously diabolical.

– Jean-Claude Perrier, Livres Hebdo (Paris)

Phillips is nearly as deft as Nabokov at parodying the academic mind.

– The New Yorker

Phillips is a master manipulator, able to assume a dozen convincingly different voices at will, and his book is vastly entertaining...The ending, which cannot be revealed, is shocking. 

– Publishers Weekly

It's so good I want to put on a sandwich board and walk up and down telling people they MUST read it....The tightly layered plot unwinds, at breakneck speed, to a climax as dazzling as a gold necklace on a pharaoh's chest. 

– Mary Ann Grossman, St. Paul Pioneer Press


[Nothing] is what it seems in this awesomely clever fiction....[Readers] will never grasp how things came about until the jolting end. 

– Roger Miller,Chicago Sun-Times

Scorchingly funny. 

– 
Chicago Sun-Times

Riveting....[Phillips is] having a ripper time hanging detective work, archaeology, and ancient eroticism together...with the gutters and hovels of Sydney.

– Geelong Advertiser (Victoria, Australia)

This richly inventive epic... is for those who like a historical jeu d'esprit that is delivered with intelligence.

– Kate Saunders, The Times of London

Why believe what antiquity tells us when the present is so often made of lies?  It is a testament to Mr. Phillips's art that The Egyptologist keeps us reading to the very end without ever answering the question.

– John Freeman, The Wall Street Journal


A rich, fat, historical romp....Clever, ambitious, and artfully constructed....A bravura display....A brave, deft, high-wire act of storytelling....Luxuriant and fearlessly unparochial....Most enjoyable of all is the amused and amusing prestidigitation of an author whose talents and limits seem not yet to have been fully tested.

– Elsbeth LindnerMiami Herald

Brilliant.  Deceptively complex.  Gut-bustingly witty.  At once dark and winningly optimistic.  Without a doubt, the best book I have read this year....His ability to craft a narrative that is both screwball and profound is unparalleled.

– Sara Pipher, Lincoln Journal-Star

The book is genuinely outstanding, its devious and engrossing plot outshone only by Phillips's frequently hilarious and revealing depictions of human frailty and folly.

– John Adams, KMT - A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt

An astonishingly clever Nabokovian tangle... Yet, thanks to Phillips' daunting skill--genius, maybe--at revelation through suggestion, we can read between the lines.

Harper Barnes,St. Louis Post-Dispatch


One of the funniest, saddest novels of the last decade.

– John Kappes, Cleveland Plain Dealer

What a splendid, funny, bewitching book…Beneath Arthur Phillips' singular wit and peerless comic timing, lies a spot-on parable of 20th Century self-delusion and the painfully fruitless quest for immortality. 

Gary Shteyngart, author of The Russian Debutante's Handbook

For while The Egyptologist is a genuine thriller, it is also genuinely hilarious.  In Phillips' hands this makes for an outlandish and refreshing literary combo....leaping beyond slapstick into breathtaking comic madness.

– Arthur Salm,San Diego Union-Tribune

A beautifully written novel that is mournful, slapstick, lewd, sympathetic, and bitterly funny.

– Jennifer Pinkowski,Archaeology

The Egyptologist...is every bit as accomplished and as enjoyable [as Prague], fulfilling the promise of his first effort while offering extraordinary promise for his next....The Egyptologist, with first-rate prose, dead-on characterization, and a unique sense of what makes a story, represents an entirely original and satisfying work of the imagination by a writer who may go on to become one of our best.

– Jeff Lodge, Richmond Times Dispatch

Phillips proves himself once again to be a wildly creative storyteller. 

– Joanne WilkinsonBooklist

Richly imagined and exceedingly elaborate...dizzying structure.

– 
Jonathan Sabin, Details (Fall's best books)

Exhilarating....The Egyptologist is as tantalizing as the search it recounts. 

– 
John Anderson, New York Newsday

Highly recommended. 

– Edward Cone, Library Journal

A-.  What you'll love: opium-addicted heiresses, sexy communists, Australian detectives and real-life figures...heighten the novel's dazzling complexity.

– The Washington Post


The dueling voices of a nostalgic detective and the monomaniacal archeologist he pursues around the world are only part of the treasure contained in The Egyptologist. Crafted with nuanced erudition and literary flair, Phillips uncovers the hieroglyphs (not hieroglyphics - but you'll learn that) and building blocks beneath how we construct, interpret and trust our storytellers. Highly textured, quirky, serpentine, surprising. 

Matthew Pearl, author of The Dante Club

This is a suave, elegant novel, replete with sinuously composed sentences and delicious wordplay....Phillips's formidable research and witty prose make this one well worth your time.  He's quite possibly a major novelist in the making.

Kirkus Reviews

An intricately built whodunit for the King Tut lover in all of us.

Esquire (The Big Important Book of the Month)

An intensely rewarding puzzle.

Men's Journal

The novel as funhouse mirror -- a zesty celebration of the Big Lie....A delicious pleasure of the novel is finding the clues, both subtle and broad, that Phillips plants.

– Brigitte Frase, Minneapolis Star-Tribune


Dazzling...A finish both poignant and eye-popping....His entertaining characters are believably two- or three-faced, and his phrasing is gorgeous....Read Phillips' grand Egyptologist and the name of Ralph M. Trilipush will stay with you for a long, long time.

– Susan Hall-Balduf, Detroit Free Press


Even more clever and erudite than in his brilliant debut Prague....Damn, that boy can write.

– J.P. Trostle, Durham Herald-Sun

...something more than clever.  Smart yet feeling, The Egyptologist works as adventure story, intellectual labyrinth, and moral examination.

– Jesse Berrett, Twin Cities City Pages


The Egyptologist is one of the few novels I've read in recent years that I literally could not put down. I took a whole afternoon off to finish it, and when I was done I had to go back and reread some pieces to savor some of the sweetness. 

– 
K. Kris Hirst, About.com (Archaeology)

A glittery, intricate entertainment, the work of a writer uncommonly skilled at creating intelligent puzzles.

– Charles Matthews, San Jose Mercury News

An adventure in unreliable narration, and replete with old-fashioned charms.

– Laura Miller, Salon.com

Diabolically complicated in its construction....Delirious, witty fun.

– Michael Griffith, Raleigh News and Observer

The Egyptologist soars so high, into clouds of such bright comic invention, that Phillips achieves a hilarity equal to anything in Prague....A novel very much worth reading.

– Tom Bissell, New York Times Book Review (Editor's Choice)

Cleverly crafted whodunit....The Egyptologist is complicated, fulfilling, and full of good characters.

– Ruth Gutman, New York Post

A dense and witty novel, full of surprises and puzzles.

– Lois Atwood, Providence Journal

Funny, original, and adventuresome.

– Allen Pierleoni, Sacramento Bee (Fall Books You Don't Want to Miss)


Ambitious and funny and clever....Phillips works beautifully with a theme he explored in Prague: the way people construct place.

– Claire Dederer, Chicago Tribune