Ex-slave. Philosopher. Chosen one.Taita has risen from nothing to become the most trusted man at the Pharaoh's side. Only he can plot a mission that will return Egypt to its former glory. Only he can muster the force that can break the back of Egypt's greatest enemy. Across the lush plains of Egypt, Taita, the eunuch slave whose freedom is long since won, now stands as a unique advisor to the Pharaoh. He is confidant, strategist poet and a father figure to the Pharaoh's teenage sisters, Tehuti and Bekatha. Southern Egypt has an enemy it cannot shake for too long: they have been fighting the Hyksos people in the north since time began. And to finally crush them the Pharaoh must turn to his most trusted friend. Taita has an ingenious plan that will see Egypt destroy the Hyksos army and form the coveted alliance with Crete. This plan will take him, his expedition commander Zaras, and a team of warriors on an epic journey up the Nile, through Arabia to Sidon and the magical city of Babylon, and across the open seas to Crete. They will meet battle and betrayal on their journey but Taita must also contend with his charges, the spirited young princesses, Tehuti and Bekatha, whose respective love for warriors Zaras and Hui, threaten Taita's plan to use them as offerings in his alliance with Crete, and the future of Egypt itself. Wilbur Smith is a master at the helm of one of the greatest stories of all time.