Seer of Egypt is Volume II in the King’s Man trilogy.
As Book ll of the trilogy opens, Huy and Ishat are continuing Huy’s work of healing and predicting, though now from the estate that Amunhotep ll has given Huy as reward for his accurate prediction of victory in quashing the rebellious tribes of Rethennu. Their new property is just outside Huy’s home village of Hut-Herib, and people flock from far and wide to seek his aid. He and Ishat enjoy a comfort beyond their dreams as the king continues to send an allowance of gold.
Yet, as the years pass, with major changes in his life and household, an underlying uneasiness troubles Huy. Why has Pharaoh not taken further advantage of his gifts; never called upon him again? Why does Huy have the feeling Pharaoh knows everything about his life yet remains silent?
When it finally becomes clear what request Amunhotep ll has been saving for Huy, and that the King appears prepared to ignore the serious warning from the gods that Huy had conveyed through his prediction years before, Huy is faced with a momentous choice: Displeasing the King, or failing the gods who gave him back his life with powers of a yet unknown purpose.
Pauline’s notes on the King’s Man trilogy
I wrote the Lords trilogy as one novel. It subsequently divided naturally into three volumes, but by the time the first, The Hippopotamus Marsh, was published, I was exhausted. I took a great deal of time off, and when I felt ready to write again I deliberately chose a character from the Eighteenth Dynasty, Huy Son of Hapu, who seemed mysterious enough to allow me the freedom to happily fictionalize him. But the research quickly made it clear that the man would not be so easy to explain.
History has left us no record of him before he was summoned to the court of Pharaoh Amunhotep the Third, one of Egypt’s greatest kings, except the names of his parents, his brother, and the few other members of his family. He was born, and lived for approximately the first fifty years of his life, at Hut-herib, a small Delta town. Within nine years of having answered the royal command to present himself before the Horus Throne he had risen to become the virtual ruler of the country, in charge of everything from trade and taxes to the distribution of Egypt’s naval and infantry forces.
How had this happened? What was there about Huy that not only brought him to the attention of the King but kept him in total power until his death as an old man in his eighties? In The Twice Born I have attempted to answer this question. I began with Huy as a spoilt child about to be sent away to school, where something terrible and yet miraculous took place which was to change his fate for ever. I ended the novel with an eighteen-year-old Huy and his childhood friend and servant Ishat moving onto an estate granted to him by the grateful King Amunhotep the Second. The reason for His Majesty’s gratitude was something startlingly unique. Huy settles down in comfort.
By the time we meet Huy again in the second volume, Seer of Egypt, his life and that of Ishat seem cheerfully predictable, but Huy lives under the constant scrutiny of Atum, creator god, who in return for a most unusual favour has demanded that Huy decipher the ancient and well-nigh incomprehensible Book of Thoth, dictated by Atum to the god of scribes, the ibis-headed Thoth, at the dawn of history. Huy does not know why he must do this, and will not find out until the third and last novel in the series. At the end of Seer Huy is ordered to leave his pretty little estate and take his place as an advisor to the boy king Amunhotep and his mother, the Regent Mutemwia. His rapid rise to becoming the unackowledged pharaoh of Egypt has begun.
In Volume III it culminates in his death, by which time the common people were already worshipping him as a god, and I explain why.
The King’s Man trilogy has been translated into French, German, Spanish, and Hungarian.