I'm ankle-deep (though I should be knee-deep) in NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) right now, and had to pause for a few days to do some hardcore college-style research...at least it's research into one of my very favorite subjects: Ancient Egypt. As such, I've devoured three textbooks, a historical atlas, and most recently, Barbara Mertz's Red Land, Black Land.
Side note: For those of you who are Echo Trilogy fans it should thrill you that finishing up the rough drafts for the rest of the trilogy is my NaNo project. Yippeeeee!
Here's my brief book review of Barbara Mertz's Red Land, Black Land:
This book is fantastic, as is Ms. Mertz's knowledge of the ancient Egyptians and her ability to make logical and believable interpretations of physical evidence. She makes the ancient world accessible to us modern folks, painting a vivid picture of the every day for these ancient peoples--which is VERY welcome when almost all publications on Egyptology focus on tombs and temples. After reading this, I have a much better idea of what it might really have been like to lived in various time periods throughout Egypts long history. Beyond this, the writing style is very accessible and easy-reading.
I highly recommend this book to people who aren't only interested in what the ancient Egyptians left behind, but what these artifacts can tell us about who they were and how they lived. Non-fiction doesn't usually float my boat, but Red Land, Black Land really was a pleasure to read.