Secret of the Prince’s Tomb — “The Imagination Station” Series

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Book Review

Secret of the Prince’s Tomb by Marianne Hering and Marshal Younger has been reviewed by Focus on the Family’s marriage and parenting magazine. It is the seventh book in “The Imagination Station” series.

Plot Summary

Patrick doesn’t like that summer is coming to an end. He feels as though teachers treat him like a slave and students tease him for his faith. Beth doesn’t mind going back to school because she wants to see her friends. Mr. Whittaker (Whit) offers them an adventure in the Imagination Station.

The Imagination Station takes Beth and Patrick to Egypt. As they walk around an outside marketplace, a girl named Tabitha asks for help. They hide her until her father finds her. The cousins go to her house with her. It is large and lavish. They appear to be a rich family.

Egyptian soldiers barge into Tabitha’s home. They are getting ready to make the family slaves until a boy named Lateef comes in and tells the soldiers to leave his friends alone. They obey him because he is Pharaoh’s son.

Tabitha tells Beth and Patrick that they are not safe if they stay with her. So the cousins follow Lateef. He wants to talk to his father to find out why the Habiru are being turned out of their homes and enslaved.

They walk by the Nile. The water is low. The Egyptians are afraid it won’t overflow its banks this year. If it doesn’t, the farming land won’t be fertile. Lateef believes that if enough people bring prayers and gifts for sacrifice to Ra’s temple, he and the other gods will bless them and cause the Nile River to overflow.

Lateef buys the cousins fish and tells them to sacrifice the fish to Ra. Patrick refuses. Lateef is angry that Patrick believes in only one God, not the gods of the Egyptians. Patrick asks whether others believe in only one God. Lateef says the Habiru do, which is why people are angry with them.

The children reach the palace. Lateef has to wait until his father is out of a meeting to talk to him. The children go to the roof to wait. They look over the side and see Tabitha’s brother, Ammon, being beaten. Lateef orders the man to stop beating his friend. Lateef decides not to wait for his father’ s meeting to be over. He, Patrick and Beth take a secret staircase down to Pharaoh’s throne room.

Once there, a servant named Hasheput tells them not to bother Pharaoh but follow him. The children learn that Pharaoh thinks the Habiru are having too many children and will soon outnumber the Egyptians. Pharaoh wants to make the Habiru his slaves.

Lateef still wants to talk to his father, but he sends Patrick and Beth to find Tabitha’s family and warn them. He thinks they might be hiding with their people who are already slaves and digging a canal for the Egyptians. Beth and Patrick find Tabitha, who was captured shortly after they left her home. Her whole family was caught, too. Many of them are digging the canal. Tabitha brings water to the workers.

Beth and Patrick hide Tabitha in a large pot. They put poles through its handles and carry the pot. They get past the Egyptian guards and head toward the palace. But Beth stumbles, and the pot falls to the ground and breaks. The guards see Tabitha. They put her back to work and put Beth and Patrick in a prison cell.

An old man named Malachi is also in prison with the children. He tells them about a prince who was powerful in Egypt. He was a Habiru. Malachi believes the Habiru have forgotten the prince. He thinks remembering him will help the Habiru have hope, no matter how bad their situation seems.

Lateef finds Beth and Patrick. His father has forbidden him to help any Habiru. He frees Beth and Patrick, but tells them that he can’t help them if they help the Habiru again.

Beth and Patrick return to the digging of the canal, but no one is there. The Habiru are now in their tents for the night. They find Tabitha’s family and tell them to remember their prince. Tabitha’s family remembers the prince because they are related to him. Tabitha thinks that if Beth and Patrick can find the prince’s mummy and bring it to the Habiru, they will again have hope.

Beth and Patrick go to the Necropolis, which means the “city of the dead.” They sneak past the guards and search until they find the door to the prince’s tomb. Once it’s open, they find his resting place. They realize that this is the tomb of Joseph, a Hebrew mentioned in the Bible.

Beth and Patrick decide to leave Joseph’s body where it is. Patrick’s Bible tells them that Moses will take his bones with the Israelites, the Habiru, to the Promised Land. They escape the Egyptian guards once again and head back to the Habiru tents.

Tabitha is disappointed that they did not bring the prince’s mummy. They remind Tabitha that her faith is in a living God and not a dead prince. Tabitha and her family agree and choose to honor their God, even in the hardships they now face.

Christian Beliefs

Beth mentions that she believes in only one God, unlike the Egyptians who believe in hundreds of gods. Patrick refuses to make an offering to an Egyptian god.

Patrick reads how Moses will bring Joseph’s bones with the Israelites when they leave Egypt. He tells Tabitha and her family that they must put their faith in a living God and not the dried bones of a dead prince. Tabitha’s family decides to be faithful to God.

Other Belief Systems

Egyptian gods are carved into and painted on products in the market. At the temple of Ra, the Egyptian god of the sun, people bring their prayers written on cloth and gifts. Both are given to Ra as burnt offerings. Ra has the head of a bird and the sun on top of his head. Seth, the god of storms, has a horse head. Anuket, the goddess of the Nile, has a spear and a tall headdress of gold. The Egyptians serve hundreds of gods. Lateef believes that if enough people bring prayers and gifts for sacrifice, the gods will bless them and the Nile River will overflow.

Authority Roles

Tabitha’s father tries to look out for her and the rest of his family. Pharaoh fears the Habiru and has made them slaves to keep them from someday overpowering the Egyptians. He never knew the Habiru prince so doesn’t care about their history and doesn’t want them in any positions of power. He tells his son not to help any Habiru.

Profanity & Violence

Habiru are whipped and treated poorly. They were kidnapped and made slaves.

Sexual Content

None

Discussion Topics

Get free discussion questions for this book and others, at FocusOnTheFamily.com/discuss-books.

Additional Comments

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Book reviews cover the content, themes and worldviews of fiction books, not their literary merit, and equip parents to decide whether a book is appropriate for their children. The inclusion of a book’s review does not constitute an endorsement by Focus on the Family.

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