Esther L. (Newtown, PA)
City Of The Sun
In 1941 the Egyptian Jewish community feels under the protection of the King,even as Rommel's Afrika Korps is closing in. A young German refugee is being sought by both the Germans and the Americans for their weapons program in the race for a nuclear bomb. The story is very interesting and well told although it can't be compared to books in the espionage/spy thriller genre. I did really enjoy City Of The Sun and will pass the book along to my friend to enjoy.
Daniel A. (Naugatuck, CT)
City of the Sun
This is the first book written by the author and it is a page-turner. It is fast-paced and the story put me right next to the characters in WWII war-torn Cairo.
The story is about war, and spies, and Jews living in Egypt, and if that's not enough, it's also a love story.
I would definitely read anything else this author would write; she is really good, and I highly recommend this book to any History buff. 4 stars
Ann W. (New York, NY)
lost and misplaced in time
I had a very mixed reaction to this book. The chronology is wrong, even through the author acknowledged some of this in an afterword. Characters are not very interesting. The novel was filled with information, not always relevant to the story. The author alludes to Velodrome d"Hiver which occurred in 1942. Yet what actually happened was buried until after the war. The French have yet to really acknowledge what occurred. Maya deceit about herself was unrealistic. All Arabs are not Moslem yet that was the implication. The research gave some interests tidbits but ignored other people. Nasser and Sadat were close. He was in Cairo when Lamson incident occurred in 1942.
The end was also unrealistic but formulaic.
Lee M. (Creve Coeur, MO)
Fasten your seat belt and settle in for a clever dose of mystery with a sprinkling of history and a darn good story. Ms. Maio knows this part of the world and you can feel her love for it as the plot unfolds. I was really deep into it and then the author added a totally unnecessary explicit sex scene that interrupted the flow and spoilt it all. And the implausible airport "Casablacian" scene added to my dismay. Oh well 3/4 of a good book is better than none?
Mary R. (San Jose, CA)
A Love Letter to Cairo
'City of the Sun' is a love letter to Cairo by the author. She draws the reader in to World War II era Cairo and describes it in such detail that we are there with the characters. It reminded me of the film 'Cairo Time' in the sense that the creator of both stories are obviously so much in love with this mysterious and magical city. However, the characters never seemed to come to full form and I ultimately didn't really care about what happened to them. The story took a long time to come to a dramatic head. I recommend this book with some reservations – I think that readers might overlook weak characters in favor of the historical background and description of life in Cairo during WWII.
Sara F. (Riverbank, CA)
Good Story Just Misses
I wanted to love this book but I just didn't. Historical fiction is my favorite genre so I stuck with it but it is not a page turner or a thriller. Well, not until the last 60 pages or so, anyway. I'm glad to learn more about that place and time from someone with a keen personal interest and would be happy to hear more from Juliana Maio if she could speak less like a reporter and more like a yarn spinner. I hope she tries again.
Barbara O. (Maryland Heights, MO)
City of the Sun is a captivating read. In turns, historical, the intrigue of spies and the politics of World War Ii, a romance and murder. This book has it all. Most intriguing the story of the Egyptian Jews and Cairo as it was at the start of the war.the author tells an entertaining story with likable characters that keep your interest to the end. Along the way, the reader revisits history and is transported to a glamorous time when Britain still ruled the world. Entertaining till the end. Bravo.