Ruling Upper Egypt from Thebes, Pharaoh Sekenenre has many enemies.
Aweserre, whose grandfather seized the crown of Lower Egypt. Kamose and
Ahhotpe, his son and daughter, who plot to rule in his place. And, most
dangerous, the storm-god Set.
It is a time of famine. To prosper a man must be civilized and ruthless. Ramose, priest and Vizier, is all of these. Kasa, a farmer, must learn to be like him to survive. Neith, wife of Ramose, is driven, first to drink, then to courage. Hathor, who killed her son, finds love, desertion, then a second chance at love. Tiyi, the gentle masseuse, is desired by many, but desires only one.
Watched by the gods of Egypt, the conflict reaches its climax in war. The pyramids, a thousand years old when the story begins, play a crucial part. Behind all is the God Set, with his question: 'What am I?'