River God is the first Wilbur Smith book that I've read and I am glad that it definitely won't be the last!
It took me around 3 weeks to complete the book, given I read it only for around an hour everyday and I am a sloooow reader.
River God is based around the mythological history of ancient Egypt. It's depicted as a monologue by a highly talented eunuch slave, Taita, who serves Lord Intef, the grand vizier of Egypt and mainly takes care of his routine business and daughter Lady Lostris. Tanus, Taita's student, is the lover of Lostris. The complete story is nothing but a romance-sex-action-packed Bollywood movie script with the girl's father playing the adamant thick-skinned villain and marrying her away to the Pharaoh for his treasures. The story is about how Taita and his students manage to escape the Hyksos invasion of Egypt with a promise to the people of returning to conquer it back again. The promise is well-kept and the part of their years as Bedouins is another story in itself.
Taita, would make the perfect smart-assed, melodramatic-but-kind-hearted vamp in a Balaji Telefilms' soap (also read: well-meaning bitch). Taita also indulges in a lot of self-praise and pomposity, while claiming to be modest. So, people with little tolerance for melodrama... this is not the book for y'all. As for the people who love the saucy scripts, you will love Taita! I am already addicted to him and can't wait to read the next three books.
The book, as mentioned by Wilbur Smith at the end, is a transcription of some scrolls found in Egypt in the tomb of a queen and is re-written to suit modern readers. It is still a Fiction because supposedly this was all in the writer's head. Though, after reading the book I would say, whatever it was in Smith's head, was pretty good.
All in all I would rate it 4/5!