Cleopatra: Last Queen of Egypt, Profile Books 2008.
Cleopatra VII was the last effective ruler of the Macedonian dynasty of Ptolemies who had ruled Egypt for three centuries from their magnificent multi-cultural capital of Alexandria, the largest city of the Mediterranean world. Cleopatra was both a living Egyptian goddess, and a Macedonian queen. Highly intelligent, she spoke many languages and was rumoured to be the only Ptolemy to read and speak Egyptian. Her famous liaisons with Julius Caesar and Mark Antony were as much to do with politics as with the heart. Ruthless in dealing with her enemies, many within her own family, Cleopatra steered her kingdom through difficult times. She very nearly succeeded in creating an eastern empire to rival the growing might of Rome.