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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of her best
I find it difficult to understand why other reviewers were disappointed by this book. To my mind, it is one of Lindsey's best (and yes, I have read them all). Apart from anything else, it has the most memorable plot - one of comparatively few genuine whodunnits in the Falco series - and the locations are spot on. Visit places like Petra and Palmyra today, and you can...
Published on 21 Feb 2001 by jj00@dial.pipex.com

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly disappointing but has its humourous moments
The Falco series are characterised by smooth plotting, finely drawn characters and genuine wit. This particular novel is probably the weakest of the series. The murderer's motive is weak, the detection process laboured and the denouement contrived. The book is saved by the characters of Falco and Helena and Falco's pungent wit which somehow avoids anachronisms which...
Published on 24 Feb 1999


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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of her best, 21 Feb 2001
This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Paperback)
I find it difficult to understand why other reviewers were disappointed by this book. To my mind, it is one of Lindsey's best (and yes, I have read them all). Apart from anything else, it has the most memorable plot - one of comparatively few genuine whodunnits in the Falco series - and the locations are spot on. Visit places like Petra and Palmyra today, and you can just picture Falco going about his investigation. Difficult to fault!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Last Act in Palmyra, 26 Mar 2013
By 
Damaskcat (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
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Falco has been asked by Thalia to try and find one of her employees who has disappeared. Fortunately he can combine the search with a commission from the Emperor Vespasian so he decides to combine business with pleasure and take Helena with him. After finding a dead body at the top of a hill at a shrine, Falco and Helena have to move on hurriedly and a priest, Musa, goes with them. They join forces with a travelling theatre group and Falco acquires the job of tracking down the murderer who was one of the group.

I am enjoying reading this interesting series. I love the wry humour of the writing and the characters of Falco and Helena. In fact all the characters in the books are well drawn and first century life is vividly and evocatively described. I find the historical detail fascinating and I can almost believe I am there with the characters when I'm reading.

If you like your mysteries set in an historical background then there are few authors who write as well as Lindsey Davis in my opinion. This book is the number six in the series of twenty which started with `The Silver Pigs' they can be read in any order but it is preferable to read them in the order in which they were published in order to track the development of the series characters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am having such fun reading my way through this series, 2 Sep 2014
This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Falco 06) (Paperback)
I am having such fun reading my way through this series. I came upon Lindsey Davis when reading her new series about Falco's daughter and what a pleasure it was to find that there was 20 other novels to read featuring her Pa and the wonderful Helena.
My husband and I are great travellers and have seen Roman remains all around the (Roman) world including the spectacular Palmyra. One now weeps for the Syrian people and hope that dear old Palmyra tucked away in dessert is safe from all the current destructive horrors of war.
This also touches on fabulous Nabitian city of Petra and gives us an insight into the life of travelling players (ref Shakespeare Wallah!)
I find these books really bring Rome to life and since starting to read the series have visited the (OK they are Etruscan) tombs at Tarquinia and found I recognised in those wonderful frescos so many things mentioned in these books.
I so look forward to reading the rest of the series and have a whole group of friends and neighbours who are ready and waiting for the next book, practically hammering down my door before I have turned the last page!
If you have not discovered this author buy Silver Pigs, learn something of Roman Britain and enjoy the ride!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Slightly disappointing but has its humourous moments, 24 Feb 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Paperback)
The Falco series are characterised by smooth plotting, finely drawn characters and genuine wit. This particular novel is probably the weakest of the series. The murderer's motive is weak, the detection process laboured and the denouement contrived. The book is saved by the characters of Falco and Helena and Falco's pungent wit which somehow avoids anachronisms which one finds in similar attempts at 'historic' humour. I particularly enjoyed the encounter with the christians. Well worth a read but not one of her best.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In which Falco and Helena join an acting troupe in Syria, 9 Jun 2008
By 
Marshall Lord (Whitehaven, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Paperback)
This is the sixth in a series of excellent detective stories set in Vespasian's Roman Empire and featuring the informer Marcus Didius Falco. Informers in ancient Rome were something between a private detective and a government spy.

Falco is sent on a mission to the middle east on behalf of the Imperian Roman authorities, and his girlfriend Helena Justina insists on coming along. During the mission they attach themselves to a travelling troupe of actors who are performing a tour of the ten main cities in an area which roughly corresponds to modern day Syria. And when one of the members of the acting troupe is murdered, Falco and Helena have another mystery to solve ...

There are very differing opinions among fans of Lindsey Davis about which of her books is best. I can only say that I thought all of these books deserved either four stars or five stars, and this is one of the books I gave five stars, because it almost made me feel as if I had actually visited the middle east in 72 AD.

I initially tried this series because I had enjoyed the "Cadfael" mediaeval detective stories by Ellis Peters. Where Cadfael is excellent, Falco is brilliant. Ellis Peters herself (or to use her real name, Edith Pargeter) said of the early books of the series, 'Lindsey Davis continues her exploration of Vespasian's Rome and Marcus Didius Falco's Italy with the same wit and gusto that made "The Silver Pigs" such a dazzling debut and her rueful, self-deprecating hero so irresistibly likeable.'

Funny, exciting, and based on a painstaking effort to re-create the world of the early Roman empire between 70 and 76 AD.

If you have met and enjoyed either the Cadfael or Thraxas series, this is even better.

It isn't absolutely essential to read these stories in sequence, as the mysteries Falco is trying to solve are all self-contained stories and each book can stand on its own. Having said that, there is some ongoing development of characters and relationships and I think reading them in the right order does improve the experience.

The full Falco series, in chronological order, consists at the moment of:

The Silver Pigs
Shadows in Bronze
Venus in Copper
The Iron Hand of Mars
Poseidon's Gold
Last Act in Palmyra
Time to Depart
A Dying Light in Corduba
Three Hands in the Fountain
Two for the Lions
One Virgin Too Many
Ode to a Banker
A Body in the Bath house
The Jupiter Myth
The Accusers
Scandal taks a Holiday
See Delphi and Die
Saturnalia
Alexandria
Nemesis

I have can warmly recommend all of these.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping!, 8 Nov 2012
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I have been reading the "Falco" books in order and have found this one to be exceptionally well crafted - it certainly keeps you guessing right until the end whilst unlike some others in the series where the end is flagged halfway through.
The books make reference to previous events but you can certainly read each one in isolation without the need for prior knowledge.
I highly recommend these books, the author's descriptive powers are wonderful and....apologies for the cliche....but you really feel as if you are there wtach events unfurl.
Another excellent Falco book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the sixth Falco novel, 26 Jan 2011
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This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Hardcover)
As usual, I thoroughly enjoyed this sixth Falco novel. I read it far too quickly - I wanted it to make it last longer, and my husband is sensibly taking it at a more leisurely pace now. This one is set in what we now call the Middle East, starting in Petra and proceeding north to the Decapolis towns, and as we have been there we particularly enjoyed the atmosphere and rich descriptive scenes. Lindsey Davies always makes you feel you are there. I ordered the seventh book at once - Time to Depart - and found to my delight that it begins on the way back to Rome only days after Last Act in Palmyra finishes, so I felt that I had hardly been away from my friends Marcus and Helena.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A friend for life, 24 Jun 2010
By 
S. Johnson - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Last Act in Palmyra (Falco 06) (Paperback)
Amazon suggest I might like to review this book!!
Well to have got this far in the Falco series I have read The Course of Honour, The Silver Pigs, Shadows in Bronze, Venus in Copper, The Iron Hand of Mars, Poseidon's Gold, and now Last Act in Palmyra. Would I have read all these books if I did not thoroughly enjoy them?

Marcus Didius Falco really is an awfully nice chap. And his up-market girlfriend Helena Justina is hugely sensible. Lindsey Davis writes the stories very well and with a lot of humour. She writes very efficiently. Every character who is introduced is there for a reason. I read a lot and find this series set in ancient Rome very refreshing, instead of a setting during the twentieth century as seems to be normal for fiction written today.

I am so glad my friend Margaret Jenkins recomended the Falco series to me because I have now a friend for life. Yes, read them in the right order as the stories do follow one after the other, and the realationships between the characters develop as time goes by, but go back and read them again, you will enjoy them just as much the second time round. I would give Falco ten stars if I could.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Last Act, But Not for Falco, Thank Goodness, 28 Jan 2008
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Quite a number of authors have jumped on the sleuth in Ancient Rome bandwagon, but Lindsey Davis is probably the best of the lot. Her leading character Marcus Didius Falco has been sent out of Rome on a dangerous mission to spy out the Lands of the East. An Imperial order sends him and his girlfriend Helena Justina, the daughter of a Senator to the rose red city of Petra. There they discover a murdered playwright.

Falco feels obliged to investigate the murder and soon becomes embroiled in more murder and mayhem, making him wish he had not left his beloved Rome. All the author's books have been entertaining and of a very high standard, this one is no different.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I love these books, 29 Jun 2014
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I love these books, each one better than the last, Lindsey Davis not only weaves clever plots she has the wonderful ability to bring the sights sounds people and places of the ancient world vividly to life, highly recommended.
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Last Act in Palmyra (Falco 06)
Last Act in Palmyra (Falco 06) by Lindsey Davis (Paperback - 7 Aug 2008)
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