Men are from Rome, women are from Egypt. Or so they say. Send a few Roman legions to Gaul, Greece, or Carthage, and the Empire's triumph is all but assured. The legendary Pharaoh Cleopatra, however, is a most puzzling challenge, her weapons beyond men's cunning. She calls her ways "femininity-culture-love," and rare is the soldier who knows how to counter those.
While this book roughly follows the Shakespearean story of Antony and Cleopatra and can be regarded as a historical novel, it is a Tristram Shandy of a historical novel: philosophical and other digressions abound. But what is philosophy without romance, the head without the heart? Love of women, love of men, and love of ancient Egypt and Egyptology all have their many moments. And since our world is also one of war, there is that, too; yet it is tempered by being mostly a war of words, fought by sages and pundits whose language is such that we must think them escapees from our think tanks and television sets — colonialism, never change! All in all, a novel for readers who long for something new.