There’s a theme there, yes. Interest in Roman history roused as a result of my addiction to Spartacus (the show airing on Starz), which struck like quicksilver and has yet to be shaken off, though it’s been some time since I last read meaty, detailed historical fiction. Even one of these will test my concentration, but that obviously didn’t impact my decision to obtain all three.
Videssos Cycle: Volume One: Misplaced Legion and Emperor for the Legion – Harry Turtledove (March)
Turtledove is reknowned for writing alternative history, and while I’m certainly familiar with his name, I’ve never read his work. The premise of this series (the first two books of which are found in this soon to be released edition), which finds “a Roman legion…transported to a strange realm where magic rules,” caught my interest. The first chapter is excerpted on Amazon’s product page, and the writing/storyline held enough promise that, after a brief debate, I preordered it for my Kindle.
The Blood of Gods: A Novel of Rome – Conn Iggulden (July)
This one comes via NetGalley. Set after the assassination of Julius Caesar, the novel focuses on two men whose deep grief at his loss sets them on the path to bringing down his murderer and those who betrayed him. One of those men is infamous, Marc Antony, and the other is Caesar’s adopted son, Octavian.
After Rome: A Novel of Celtic Britain – Morgan Llwelyn
Over ten years ago, at the very bottom of B. Dalton’s paperback display stand, I sighted a novel called Lion of Ireland, which came home with me that day. I quickly fell in love with both Brian Boru and Llwelyn’s storytelling style, and the promise to read more of her novels remains as yet unfulfilled. That will soon change. Here’s a little piece from the publisher’s summary:
Passionate, adventurous Dinas recruits followers and dreams of kingship. Thoughtful Cadogan saves a group of citizens when Saxons invade and burn Viroconium, then becomes the reluctant founder and leader of a new community that rises in the wilderness. The two cousins could not be more different, but their parallel stories encapsulate the era of a new civilization struggling to be born.
From the library:
Written in Red – Anne Bishop
New Anne Bishop. Despite my refusal to read the last book in the beloved Black Jewels series, that’s all that need be said.
Seven Kinds of Hell – Dana Cameron
The Amazon reviews of this title, which I’ve taken the most cursory look at, have run the gamut with the majority of reviewers pegging it as a two or three star read. I’ll give it a few chapters and see.
Legacy of the Clockwork Key – Kristin Bailey
The sole YA title in the bunch. Honestly, it’s been hit or miss for a while now with new YA novels, but I’ve checked my expectations and am hopeful this one will land on the hit side of the line.