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The Ides of April (Falco: The New Generation) [Hardcover]

Lindsey Davis
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (170 customer reviews)
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Book Description

11 April 2013

Flavia Albia is the adopted daughter of a famous investigating family. In defiance of tradition, she lives alone on the colourful Aventine Hill, and battles out a solo career in a male-dominated world. As a woman and an outsider, Albia has special insight into the best, and worst, of life in ancient Rome.

A female client dies in mysterious circumstances. Albia investigates and discovers there have been many other strange deaths all over the city, yet she is warned off by the authorities. The vigils are incompetent. The local magistrate is otherwise engaged, organising the Games of Ceres, notorious for its ancient fox-burning ritual. Even Albia herself is preoccupied with a new love affair: Andronicus, an attractive archivist, offers all that a love-starved young widow can want, even though she knows better than to take him home to meet the parents...

As the festival progresses, her neighbourhood descends into mayhem and becomes the heartless killer's territory. While Albia and her allies search for him, he stalks them through familiar byways and brings murder ever closer to home.

The Ides of April is vintage Lindsey Davis, offering wit, intrigue, action and a brilliant new heroine who promises to be as celebrated as Marcus Didius Falco and Helena Justina, her fictional predecessors.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; First Edition edition (11 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444755811
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444755817
  • Product Dimensions: 16.4 x 3.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (170 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 184,692 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Lindsey Davis has written nineteen novels, beginning with The Course of Honour, the love story of the Emperor Vespasian and Antonia Caenis. Her bestselling mystery series features laid-back First Century detective Marcus Didius Falco and his partner Helena Justina, plus friends, relations, pets and bitter enemy the Chief Spy. Her books are translated into many languages and serialised on BBC Radio 4. Past Chair of the Crimewriters' Association and a Vice President of the Classical Association, she has won the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger, the Dagger in the Library, and a Sherlock award for Falco as Best Comic Detective. She was born in Birmingham but now lives in London.

Product Description


Praise for MASTER AND GOD:

'The narrative is rapid and the story well told with much sharp-edged detail. You can open this book and step right into a convincing yet extraordinary past.'


'Davis's descriptions of Rome are vivid and lively...this is a great yarn' ( Daily Mail)

'While this book is a departure from her usual Falco novels, the trademark charm, piercing intelligence and ready wit are as abundant as ever... dramatic and enthralling, all the more so for being full of historical fact. The characters are intriguing and three-dimensional, and the whole is told with a humour and insight which means the reader will find the book impossible to put down.' (

'An intimate portrait of resilience, friendship and love' (Sunday Examiner, Australia)

Book Description

Falco: the new generation - Introducing Flavia Albia.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
68 of 76 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ides of April 25 Feb 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Lindsey Davis is, of course, well known to legions of fans for her Falco detective series. Now, she has cleverly created a spin off series, with Flavia Albia, Falco's adopted daughter, as the the main character. This is very much a new series, so it does not matter whether you have read any (or all) of the Falco novels - previous characters, such as family members, are mentioned, but always with explanations as to who is who, and Flavia Albia is very much the main character in her own setting. However, if you are a fan of the Falco novels, even the location will be familiar, as Favia Albia lives in Fountain Court, where her father first lived in the first book The Silver Pigs: (Falco 1). Like her father, Flavia Albia is also an private informer, with an independent streak and a wish to succeed at her chosen profession.

Being a woman both limits Flavia Albia in her investigations and yet gives her better access to information when interviewing female clients. The author paints a vibrant picture of Rome, with all the problems and limitations women faced in everyday life. When a client of Flavia Albia's dies suddenly, her main concern is that she will no longer be paid. However, the woman's stepson is unwilling to accept the death as natural and asks her to investigate. To her surprise, Flavia Albia discovers that other, previously healthy and active people, have died suddenly and it seems a murderer is stalking the streets of Rome. Originally, Flavia Albia is warned off the case, but when it becomes apparent that a female investigator could help, she joins forces with Morellus, a vigiles investigator, and Tiberius, who works for the aedile Manlius Faustus, to track down the killer.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Oh Dear, I Did Want to Enjoy It 18 April 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Oh dear, I really, really wanted to like this novel. I own and have enjoyed all of Ms Davies's novels (well a few of the very late Falcos were a little hard work). The new main character is exactly my age. I have been really looking forward to reading this book. I have had it on pre order for months but .....

For me this book lacked things I was looking for from a hot stuff Lindsay Davies novel. I came to the table expecting a tight clever plot, humour and above all joy de vivre and I found a very tired plot (that I almost couldn't be bothered waiting for the conclusion of), an understandably (given her life experiences) bitter and tiresome leading character who had none of the charm and wit I was looking for in the daughter of Falco. There was just no bounce.

I didn't hate this book. It is well written and life in ancient Rome is beautifully brought to life in the background. I just found the story and the heroine uninteresting. I am afraid my eyes kept glassing over as I read. I kept wishing Falco would come out of the background and draw my attention.

I am so sorry Ms Davies because I really love the Silver Pigs and I was hoping that this was going to be Silver Pigs mark two. I shall keep reading Ms Davies as I am sure there will be a return to form!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Falco's daughter, but she's no clone 9 Mar 2013
By Penny Waugh TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've loved all the Falco books, and was dismayed to realise that the rather downbeat Nemesis was likely to be his last investigation. Now, some years later in the unhappy reign of the Emperor Domitian, his adopted daughter, Flavia Albia, has stepped into his old office in Fountain Court, and is doing quite nicely as an informer and investigator in her own right.
Albia is still in many ways the wilful child of the Falco books, but at 29 and ten years a widow, she has her head screwed on and knows what she wants and how to get it. Drawn, reluctantly on the part of her male counterparts, into the investigation of a series of sudden deaths by poison, she proves her worth and stands firmly on her own feet.
It is the detail of Roman life, the wonderfully drawn characters (even the minor ones) who come right off the page, and the sometimes wicked humour, that make this book, and the Falco books, such a delight to read. We may not meet Falco directly here, but his presence is still very much felt I love the way the story is told in modern English and I do not find this detracts from the historical feel.
There is romance here, if rather hasty and possibly ill-judged, Albia is very human; pathos, in the horrible fate of the foxes sacrificed to Ceres which upsets her enough to take matters into her own hands; love of family - even for her obnoxious younger adopted brother Postumus (of whom I'm sure we will hear more); loyalty and determination.
Tiberius, the runner for the aedile, Andronicus the charmer, Ronan the door keeper, Junillus her deaf cousin, Robigo the fox - too many vibrant characters to name but they all fit perfectly into the story.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Falco - TNG... 6 Mar 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I love Davis's writing about Rome and have followed Falco since the start. I really wondered how Davis was going to steer Falco through the reign of Domitian given the history between them. Lo and behold; Falco - `The Next Generation' is the inspired result.

Set around a dozen years on from the story covered by Nemesis, `Ides of April' initially took a while to get going as Davis filled in some of the gaps created by the leap forward in time. The Falco series, rather like Michael Clynes' series about the incorrigible Elizabethan rogue Roger Shallot, was told as the reminiscences of someone in old age of their younger exploits. By a third of the way through the novel you can breathe a sigh of relief as you find that all the major characters from the Falco series are alive and well, if keeping their heads down to avoid being chopped by the unstable Domitian.

This is Davis at her best. The story flows well, the narrative description of Rome and its people are vivid and three dimensional and it is a wonderfully plotted book full of humour and irony. Davis has also done well to avoid miring Falco senior into the series too early. This young lady is an able detective in her own right, albeit with illustrious adoptive forebears and I'm sure that she'll build up an impressive casebook of her own to rival that of `Pa' and leave him for the time being managing grandpa Geminus's dodgy antiques business.

I did have this on pre-order from when it was first placed in the catalogue, for me Davis can do little wrong in this genre; generally I know I'm going to be royally entertained, have a few laughs and a good mystery to boot. I'm really pleased I got the opportunity to read it before it officially hit the stands.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A New Era
A fantastic start to a new era. Hard to put the book down.
Published 18 days ago by Gather Lilacs
3.0 out of 5 stars Why there was not a follow up to Falco Nemesis beats me as it would...
After Falco this was a bit staid, read through but did not grab my attention as Falco series did.
Will read the 2nd book and hopefully it's a bit more attention grabbing. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Stefan Kuczerepa
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
Very good, but a little more predictable than the Falco books. Still, I'll probably go on following Albia's investigations with as much enjoyment as those of her father.
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars I thought I wouldn't like it, that it would be a pale shade ...
I thought I wouldn't like it, that it would be a pale shade of Falco. Instead I really liked it, not as much as I liked the Falco books granted, but enough to want to read the... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Nancy Till
2.0 out of 5 stars Not at all as I expected. I gave up ...
Not at all as I expected. I gave up after a short time and have not returned to it.
Published 1 month ago by Mr Paddy Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars Like Flavia nearly as much as Falco
Up to LDs usual standard. Like Flavia nearly as much as Falco.
Published 1 month ago by exlib
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Flavia carries on in agent Rome the same as Falco.a very exciting informative book and story.
Published 2 months ago by jim gregory
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
Didn't think I would like this as I loved Falco. However Flavia Albia is a good successor and Lindsey Davis has done a super job with the character and the story.
Published 3 months ago by Mrs S Heath
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
No where near as good as Steven Saylor (sorry)
Published 3 months ago by Angela Carlisle
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
I loved the original Falco series but I found this a bit flat by comparison.
Published 3 months ago by Mr. Robert C. Selby
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