Ugarit is Israel's nearest neighbor in space and time, but Egypt was also hugely influential. William Dever argues for the importance in the makeup of Israel of a group of people identifying themselves as the descendants of Joseph, and bearing Egyptian traditions... Nephi tells us the same thing. So it behooves us to look a little bit at Egypt, and especially at Egypt during the period of Israel's history.
I suggest Kenneth Kitchen's The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt and Donald Redford's Egypt, Canaan, and Israel in Ancient Times. You'll find Book of Mormon names, political patterns, and the background for the Nephites' concerns about priestcraft as a form of government.