Why did I love this book?
My favorite historical mystery series was born in 1975 when Elizabeth Peters published Crocodile on the Sandbank. She died with a pen in her hand in 2013 at the age of 85, still writing this timeless series. In the novel, Amelia Peabody, a British feminist spinster in 1884, fights for her place in Egyptology—a world forbidden to her—while falling in love and being absolutely hilarious. The series follows her archeologist family into the 1920s and remains delightful throughout. The books are smart, pee-your-pants funny, and feature some of the most original characters in genre fiction. The author wields her PhD in Egyptology like a magic, world-building wand and makes Egypt and the whole English obsession with Egyptology in the late 19th century come alive.