With the fall of Alexandria and the death of Mark Antony and Cleopatra, their daughter, Princess Selene, finds herself a possession of the Roman government. She and her two surviving brothers are taken from Egypt to Rome where they begin a new life with Octavia, the Roman emperor's sister. While Selene finds some comfort and friendship in her new home, she continues to feel the pull of her homeland. Selene also finds herself a chosen vessel of the goddess Isis. Life becomes a delicate balance between showing subservience to Augustus Caesar and gaining political power of her own.
In Lily of the Nile, Stephanie Dray creates a compelling and believable picture of Cleopatra's daughter. She combines known history with some artistic speculation to provide a realistic glimpse into Roman life under the Emperor Octavian. Princess Selene is a complex character who follows in the footsteps of her famous mother. This is excellent historical fiction, but my only complaint is that I couldn't really like Princess Selene. The character is written well, but is too power hungry for my taste. In spite of that, this work of historical fiction is both entertaining and enlightening.