Cleopatra and Her Asp by Margaret Simpson
Reviewed by Children’s Library volunteer Colleen Olson
Having just watched the Rome Series, I was intrigued by the life (and death) of Cleopatra. So I decided to read Dead Famous – Cleopatra and her Asp because quite honestly I was sure what an Asp was! Well, it turns out that an Asp is a poisonous snake that causes a quick and painless death, and without giving too much of the story away, Cleopatra hides one in a basket of figs just before she dies.
Cleopatra and her Asp is a well-written yet entertaining book about the story of the world-famous last queen of Egypt. And she’s famous for some things that are quite amazing: She came to the throne at only 19! She married two of her brothers! She rolled herself up in a carpet to meet her first boyfriend Julius Caesar! She dressed up like Aphrodite, the goddess of love, to meet her second boyfriend Mark Antony! While Cleopatra may have not been beautiful – in fact she was short and fact – she was clever. She spoke nine languages, wrote books and made her country of Egypt a really rich one. Cleopatra was an amazing woman, which is why she is famous both dead and alive.
You can find Cleopatra and Her Asp, along with more Dead Famous books, with the Juvenile Biographies in the Teen Mezzanine.