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Empire: An Epic Novel of Ancient Rome

Steven Saylor

1 Reviews

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Fiction, Historical fiction

The eagerly awaited sequel to the bestselling Roma - now in paperback.

In the international bestseller Roma, Steven Saylor told the story of the first thousand years of Rome by following the descendants of a single bloodline. Now, in Empire, Saylor charts the destinies of five more generations of the Pinarius family, from the reign of the first emperor, Augustus, to the glorious height of Rome's empire under Hadrian.

Through the eyes of the Pinarii, we witness the machinations of Tiberius, the madness of Caligula, the cruel escapades of Nero, and the chaos of the Year of Four Emperors in 69 A.D. The deadly paranoia of Domitian is followed by the Golden Age of Trajan and Hadrian-but even the most enlightened emperors wield the power to inflict death and destruction on a whim.

Empire is strewn with spectacular scenes, including the Great Fire of 64 A.D. that ravaged the city, Nero's terrifying persecution of the Christians, and the mind-blowing opening games of the Colosseum. But at the novel's heart are the wrenching choices and seductive temptations faced by each new generation of the Pinarii. One unwittingly becomes the sexual plaything of the notorious Messalina. One enters into a clandestine affair with a Vestal virgin. One falls under the charismatic spell of Nero, while another is drawn into the strange new cult of those who deny the gods and call themselves Christians.

However diverse their destinies and desires, all the Pinarii are united by one thing: the mysterious golden talisman called the fascinum handed down from a time before Rome existed. As it passes from generation to generation, the fascinum seems to exercise a power not only over those who wear it, but over the very fate of the empire.

Praise for Steven Saylor:

'Saylor expertly weaves the true history of Rome with the lives and loves of its fictional citizens.' Daily Express

'Saylor's scholarship is breathtaking and his writing enthrals' Ruth Rendell

'With the scalpel-like deftness of a Hollywood director, Saylor puts his finger on the very essence of Roman history.' Times Literary Supplement

'Readers will find his work wonderfully (and gracefully) researched... this is entertainment of the first order.' Washington Post

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Praise for Empire: An Epic Novel of Ancient Rome

  • Engrossing and exciting. - Good Book Guide

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Steven Saylor

Steven Saylor is the author of the internationally bestselling historical novels Roma and Empire (which precede Dominus), as well as the acclaimed Roma Sub Rosa series of historical mystery novels featuring Gordianus the Finder, beginning with Roman Blood. His fascination with the ancient world began in childhood when he saw the 1963 movie Cleopatra at a drive-in theater, and continued through his education in history and Classics at the University of Texas as Austin. His first trip to Rome was a life-changing event that propelled him into his 30-year career as a historical novelist. His work has been translated into more than 20 languages, and book tours have taken to many countries, including the U.K. He has appeared on the History channel as an expert on Roman politics and daily life. With Rick Solomon, his husband of 45 years, he divides his time between Berkeley, California and Austin, Texas.

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