A book is the only mean of time travel known to man. And historical fiction is the best way to know your ancestors. Therefore this genre has grabbed my attention since quiet some time. This was the sole reason why I decided to read this book as soon as it was given to me.
The cover page is tastefully done. It takes you instantly to the roman empire which was at its worst phase which is described in the book. The book is about Eterlimus who is the master of a pleasure house when the ruthless king Tarquinius has got hold of the entire kingdom with force and treachery. Eterlimus’s family was killed by the same king. He was the sole survive of the family when Flavius took him under his wings and raised him like a son. Eterlimus did not harbor the idea of revenge because he was taught better. UNTIL, one of the girls in his pleasure house was assaulted and mutilated on Sextus’s orders.
Eterlimus wants to avenge the girl and hence births a plan of Sextus’s downfall, which throws more people in fire than he hopes to.
The story progresses quickly. It is not one of those fat history text books. The writing is also very gripping. You will find yourself on the edge of the bed desperate to know what happens next. The narration is more like a play than a story. There situations are in simple English whereas the dialogues are loaded with ancient English. There is also a mix of tenses in the book at few places. The narration is in past tense but certain places it jumps to present tense and first person.
The characters carry shades of gray. Each one is darker than the previous one. There are few instances in the book which you may find shallow. The love story of Eterlimus and Alba is not very convincing. It felt like an obligation to put it in the book.
The book overall gives you the feel of ancient Rome which was exactly what i was going for. The characters are described without being partial. The book ends with a suspense. This book calls for a sequel.
The book is a fair attempt by the author. I would like to see what he has in store for us next.
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