Review: Cleopatra: A Life | The Egyptian Queen We Never Knew

Cleopatra: A Life
Stacy Schiff (2010)

A fascinating and thoroughly readable account of the Egyptian ruler’s life and complicated legacy. There was so much I didn’t know (for starters, she was Greek, not Egyptian!) and so much of her history that has been obscured by myth and Hollywood, that I found myself completely engrossed by the material.

This is a compelling story set during an extraordinary period of history, and considering how little credible source material there is to work with, Schiff vividly conjures up the personality of a larger-than-life historical figure who has sadly been reduced to a seductress, rather than remembered for the smart and savvy ruler she evidently was.