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Arena (Roman Arena) Hardcover – 15 Aug 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Headline (15 Aug. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 075539822X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755398225
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 3.6 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 202,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Book Description

A thrilling new Roman novel charting the gruelling rise of gladitorial recruit Pavo by the bestselling author of THE LEGION and PRAETORIAN

About the Author

Simon Scarrow is a Sunday Times No. 1 bestselling author. His bestsellers include eleven novels featuring Roman soldiers Macro and Cato, with the latest, THE BLOOD CROWS, to be published in October 2013, following, most recently, PRAETORIAN and THE LEGION. He is the author of several other bestselling historical novels, including SWORD AND SCIMITAR, about the 1565 Siege of Malta, and a series of novels about the lives of the Duke of Wellington and Napoleon Bonaparte - YOUNG BLOODS, THE GENERALS, FIRE AND SWORD and THE FIELDS OF DEATH. Simon's novels have been published in the USA and in translation all around the world.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mithra on 15 Nov. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Simon Scarrow's books set in ancient Rome make absorbing reading, and this book, written for teenagers, make a good read for those who have left their teen years behind.
MITHRA
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By jacw2000 on 22 July 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
Grizzled veteran of the Rhine campaigns Macro, optio of the 2nd Legion, is sent to Rome to receive an award for bravery. But he gets involved in politics - a series of plots by the Emperor Claudius' freedmen to punish Pavo, the son of an aristocratic general executed for disloyalty to Claudius. Pavo is demoted to slave gladiator and forced to fight for his life in the arena. Meanwhile Macro is forced to train him.

According to the blurb, this book started as five separate short novellas, which probably accounts for its bittiness. Pavo wins and keeps winning, but gets no further forward. Macro too wants to be sent back to the legion, ideally with a promotion to centurion, but that doesn't happen either.

Apart from that? It's OK but not great. If you are a fan of gladiatorial combat, maybe you will like it better than me. The training, the self doubt, the aggressive self aggrandisement all resemble modern boxing, at least as perceived by an outsider like me. But I wouldn't want to watch it, and neither did the Emperor Claudius, a bookish introvert according to Suetonius.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By English Pete on 29 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A good read about the arena and the politics behind some of the fights and the conditions they lived in.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jackie Ravenscroft on 14 Jan. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Like the book although only half way through it. Prefer the stories about Macro and Cato. First book on my kindle
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By James on 17 Sept. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I will start by saying that I love the Macro and Cato series. While Simon's writing style is easy and the plotlines are exciting and a bit "Boys' Own" - in a good way - the historical detail & background, settings and attention to detail more than offset the occasionally anachronisms. In short, great storytelling for a history buff like me.

Arena is a little disappointing. It feels as though Simon has jumped on the Gladiator/Spartacus bandwagon a bit. Macro is shoe-horned into this, and the plot feels a bit like the 'Perils of Pauline'. some of the dialogue is clunky, and I lost count of the number of times that Macro unnecessarily added the word 'lad' to the end of what he was saying. Sorry this seems very subjective & picky, but imagining the dialogue in my head it just sounds clunky.

Sorry Simon - love all your other work!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 20 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's just a shame that I bought the first bits first! (sigh), still cohesive & as expected a very good read
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By yeg on 26 Dec. 2013
Format: Paperback
Having read and enjoyed all the other books written by Simon Scarrow, I was looking forward to this new one. But what a disappointment. No real story/plotline development - just a series of bloody events which don't disguise the fact of the lack of either plot or character development. He and his co-author just seem to have dashed off the novel as quickly as possible to get it onto the market.
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By EmJay on 31 Oct. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is set back in the time when Macro was an Optio and before he became acquainted with Cato. Thoroughly enjoyable but Simon Scarrow has made a slight historical error in his reference to "flash in the pan". The phrase did not exist in ancient Rome as the phrase refers to a mis-fire of a flintlock gun. Unless that is the Romans had...............
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