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Best Roman fiction authors
#46
I have the entire Lindsey Davis collection. Have you tried Stephen Saylor? He does his homework pretty well in terms of mixing with events like the Cataline conspiracy, but does take a few liberties. <p>Richard Campbell, Legio XX.
the HIGH NOISE/low signal person for RAT.
ICQ 940236
</p><i></i>
Richard Campbell
Legio XX - Alexandria, Virginia
RAT member #6?
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#47
No, actually I don't like fiction by and large unless the author is exceptional. Someone asked me if I'd ever read L. Davis, and I wanted to get some info on her before I spent money. <p><BR><p align=left><font color=gold><font size=2>
_______________________________<BR>
MILES CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR>
<font color=gold><font size=2>
VIRES ET VALOR PRO GLORIA ROMAE<BR>
_______________________________</font></font></p><i></i>
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#48
One of my students told me she only reads fiction!<br>
<br>
...Of course, all history is somewhat fictional, and all secondary source history is conjectural as well. Who can actually know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, and also present a unbiased account? But, Lindsay Davis, John Maddox Roberts, Steven Saylor, Simon Scarrow, Patrick Tivette, Rosemary Sutcliff, Maureen McClullough, General Lew Wallace, Howard Fast,and so many others are as responsible for my love of the time period, and decision to study it as are Michael Simkins, Peter Connolly, and Michael Grant.<br>
The in period writers are the best storytellers, of course, Livy, Pliny (both), Julius Caesar, Lucan, and a host of others, but they too have their bias, their reasons for telling the story they do. I suggest that you grab a bit of light reading, from time to time, or see a fictional film, just to keep you from academic burnout! I enjoyed "Roman Women", and even the 1930-50's bodice rippers, but one of my favorite Roman fictions was the first book written for the Casca series by Barry Sadler. (He wrote a couple more set in Imperial Rome that weren't bad.) I also enjoyed Harold Lamb, but I don't remember if he ever wrote about a Roman theme.<br>
Maybe Turtledove's books need an "accuracy"blind eye, but they make good reading while lying in hospital. Sprague de Camp's "Less Darkness Fall" and other author's alternate history books are "interesting". I keep remembering one set of books where Rome never fell and was engaged in a war against the Siricans, the Aztecs and Muslim extremists. Are they good history? No way! Are they fun.... maybe!<br>
If you really are in a critical mood, you can pick apart any writers' work with facts that you are sure you know. If you just want something totally silly, try some of the early 20th century "Roman" and other ancient history "bodice rippers". If you want one person's attempt to show ancient Rome, try some of the authors mentioned above. <p></p><i></i>
Caius Fabius Maior
Charles Foxtrot
moderator, Roman Army Talk
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#49
I like some fiction...love fictitious movies if there are enough explosions...The writing just has to be really top-knotch. There's a lot of what I consider crap that a lot of people I know consider gold, and it has little to do with historical accuracy.<br>
<br>
I know there are scholars like Fuller who write things contradictory to other scholars like Luttwak. I'm by no means a fanatic when it comes to how true someone's interpretation is. Context and perception are everything.<br>
<br>
It has more with avoidance of boredom than it does scholarly verve. <p><BR><p align=left><font color=gold><font size=2>
_______________________________<BR>
MILES CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR>
<font color=gold><font size=2>
VIRES ET VALOR PRO GLORIA ROMAE<BR>
_______________________________</font></font></p><i></i>
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#50
Hello Pompeius<br>
<br>
I believe you're talking about the excellent<br>
EAGLE in the SNOW by Wallace Breem. I have a PB copy<br>
from 1973. I recommend you try BOOKFINDER.com,<br>
but I had a hard time finding it.<br>
Good Luck! <p></p><i></i>
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#51
Damion Hunter. Is this a pseudonym? I have the first three books, but there was plenty of chance for at least one more. I have some spare copies of the first two books, but the third one is harder to find. I actually gave one copy of "Emperor's Games" to a friend in the U.K. who promised to share it about, to various interested persons. I don't know what happened to it but I hope it is still in circulation. Those stories are still some of the best mixtures of military and civilian life and research,in a believable fictional setting, that I have in my collection. Who is Damion Hunter, what else did he or she write? Why did she or he stop? Inquiring minds want to know! <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/ucaiusfabius.showPublicProfile?language=EN>Caius Fabius</A> at: 3/14/02 6:20:46 am<br></i>
Caius Fabius Maior
Charles Foxtrot
moderator, Roman Army Talk
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#52
Talking of bodice rippers I picked up a copy of <i> Rogue Roman</i> by one Lance Horner. Absolute trash but great fun, I got it for 20p rooting through the civic library sellf off<br>
<br>
To quote the description on the dust sheet<br>
<br>
"<i> THe chief actor in this full blooded tale is Cleon - pirate, actor, slave, gladiator, mighty lover - whose fame had travelled across the ancient world. Another mans wife was no novelty to Cleon, for many had fallen into his strong arms, but in this exciting story the other man was the Emperor Nero himself - vicious, perverted, all-powerful - and the wife was the beautiful and patrician Octavia<br>
<br>
With pathos , and a wonderful understanding of the period, the author has drawn a vivid picture of a corrupt age.</i>"<br>
<br>
B$ll&@ks<br>
<br>
Just in case he ran out of story the lad is also a dead ringer for Nero, and pulls Agrippina. No opportunity missed for girls with their clothes falling off... <p></p><i></i>
In the name of heaven Catiline, how long do you propose to exploit our patience..
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#53
A review I found<br>
<br>
Rogue Roman<br>
By Lance Horner<br>
The name says it all, really. I mean... LANCE HORNER??? Such an unlikely and yet totally suitable name, it really sets the tone for the rest of this wretched heap of reeking filth, sorry, FILTH. As some of you may be aware (even if you don't admit to it), Mr Horner is quite famous for being one half of the tacky twosome that wrote 'Mandingo', and a whole slew of other sleazy southern sex-and-slavely sagas. For years I laboured under the misapprehension that the other half was KYLIE Onsett, a woman, and I thought that it was perfectly normal, you know, a man and a woman writing dirty books together, half their luck. Imagine my surprise, then, when I read the introduction, and found that it is, in fact, KYLE Onsett... a BLOKE (and a right [email protected]%k he seems too). Anyway, the introduction is where the problems start. 'I am happy to recommend this book for those who care for a full-blooded, lusty tale of adventure. It is not for the prudish', but for those readers who can endure the truth, it will provide the same thrilling experience it did for me' and a whole lot of other c#*p in a similar vein, stressing the 'truth' and 'candour' of the 'stimulating' novel. Get the picture?<br>
<br>
Yes, it's a what-we-used-to-call-at-school 'stick-book', but it's still got big problems. Written in 1965, the author can't seem to decide of it's literature masquerading as pornography, or pornography masquerading as literature, as he uses a bizarre array of coy metaphors like 'magic mandrake root', 'the argonaut's mast' and my own favourite, 'the brazen-headed battering-ram of Caesar's legions', instead of the more direct and easily understood 'd~%k'! Indeed, the overall purpleness of the prose tends to obscure what is actually going on. Not a lot does go on, aside from a lot of brazen ram work, and the few little snippets of historical 'fact' are so ludicrous as to be laughable. The hero, Cleon, astonishingly good looking and a red-hot goer, ends up rescuing the empress Octavia, substituting a dead maidservant's corpse and running off with her (Octavia) and a couple of his gladiator (what else?) buddies, presumably to live happily ever after. Did I mention that he was r**ting Octavia (brazenly) before he rescued her? I can't bear to go into more detail on the so-called plot, most of which I've already forgotten, but suffice it to say, I saw no evidence of the 'truth', 'candour' or 'thrills' touted by MR Onsett in his introduction. An utter waste of time, not even bad enough to be funny, the only thing this book has going for it is the fact that it wasn't successful enough to warrant a sequel.<br>
<br>
<br>
1 The Editors have censored this review so it is suitable for the prudish. The book really is unmitigated crap, though.<br>
<br>
The Hon. S Cunningham Esq.<br>
<br>
from<br>
<br>
www.geocities.com/Athens/...RogueRoman<br>
<p></p><i></i>
In the name of heaven Catiline, how long do you propose to exploit our patience..
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#54
Breem also had two others: <u>The Legate's Daughter</u> and another- I forget the name. <u>The Legate's Daughter</u> was not nearly as good, IMHO, as <u>Eagle in the Snow</u>. I'm still looking for a copy of the latter. <p>Salve,<br>
Triarius<br>
One of the pack, maybe. One of the herd, <i>NEVER!</I></p><i></i>
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#55
Hehe ... I actually have the Rogue Roman book, and it really is about as trashy as trashy literature can get. But fun, if you are the type to laugh at this kind of writing, rather than toss it away in disgust.<br>
<br>
Regarding the Romans in China story, there was recently a rather long discussion of this on AncMed, and the definite conclusion (IIRC) was that there is no proof - or even a shadow of a proof - that this theory is true.<br>
<br>
Liked McCullough, can handle Saylor (though I think the "mysteries" are pretty weak), not gotten around to Davis or Scarrow yet (though I have one waiting to be read).<br>
<br>
Hated Leckie - so many inaccuracies that one wonders whether he has even done any research, and the first book at least contains blatant rip-offs from (the brilliant) Mary Renault - the man ought to be sued for plagiarism. <p>Strategy<br>
Designer/Developer<br>
Imperium - Rise of Rome</p><i></i>
Regards,

Michael A./MicaByte
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#56
I'm suprised no-one has mentioned "Imperial Governor" by George Shipway, a cracking good read by an ex-cavalry officer who has an eye for reality. Massive, speculative but highly entertaining is "Tros of Samothrace" by Talbot Mundy and boy would I like a copy of "Eagle in the Snow" by Wallace Breem. Some rogue borrowed mine and obviously enjoyed it so much that it never returned. There were a couple of paperbacks written in the 60's and 70's about Varus - Gregory Solon's "Three Legions was one and another of my favourites is "Sword at Sunset" by Rosemary Sutcliffe. I think that the book on Stilicho was written by either Robert Graves or Alfred Duggan.<br>
<br>
Cheers <p></p><i></i>
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#57
If not too late, "Eagle in The Snow" - Wallace Bream. Next to "imperial General" by George Shipway one of the best historical novels ever!<br>
<br>
Cheers<br>
<br>
Kerry <p></p><i></i>
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#58
This is too good an opportunity to pass up. Between Steven Saylor's page, the Roman Mystery website, and this list I could have books to read for years to come. I'll take a whack at combining the lists and see what we have among our recommendations. The Roman Fiction website,<br>
<br>
www.stockton.edu/%7Eroman/fiction/<br>
<br>
is exhaustive and has every author mentioned, though not a lot of descriptions.<br>
I particularly would like to read Mike Bishop's cherished books; I still haven't seen them anywhere. <p></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/bromanarmytalk.showLocalUserPublicProfile?login=richsc>RichSC</A> at: 5/7/02 7:06:36 pm<br></i>
Richard Campbell
Legio XX - Alexandria, Virginia
RAT member #6?
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#59
Just a quick aside. I'm going to be speaking at Kirby Hall this August. Any chance of meeting up with some re-enactors that weekend. My son wants to meet the guys daddy is writing about, and you might just get a new recruit.<br>
Looking forward to seeing some of you there.<br>
<br>
On the book front, does anyone know if 'Imperial Governor' is going to be reprinted? I heard a rumour a while back. <p></p><i></i>
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#60
Looks like both the ESG and Legio XIIII on Aug 10-11, and the Leg X Gem on Aug 17-18:<br>
<br>
www.geocities.com/richsc5...ies/events <p>Richard Campbell, Legio XX.
http://www.geocities.com/richsc53/studies/
ICQ 940236
</p><i></i>
Richard Campbell
Legio XX - Alexandria, Virginia
RAT member #6?
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