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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As Macro and Cato meet they are polar opposites, who become good friends
Under the Eagle is the first book in the Eagle Series, by Simon Scarrow. The book opens with a small preface set during the first Roman invasion of Britain in 55 BC. As a group of legionaries lose the army's pay chest in a marsh while withdrawing to the ships. The narrative then proceeds to the German frontier in AD 43, where a new draft of recruits is arriving at the...
Published 1 month ago by Sussman

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Odd use of language
Whilst the book is a very accessable and enjoyable romp it is, I feel, let down by it's use of very modern langauge and terms of reference.

All the profanity uses current anglo saxon terms where a 'by Jupiters Moon' would have been more fitting and in context. That said, the one phrase that made me wonder out loud was something along the lines 'as unsteady as...
Published on 19 Jan 2011 by play_monkey


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As Macro and Cato meet they are polar opposites, who become good friends, 3 Aug 2014
By 
Sussman "Sussman" (London CA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
Under the Eagle is the first book in the Eagle Series, by Simon Scarrow. The book opens with a small preface set during the first Roman invasion of Britain in 55 BC. As a group of legionaries lose the army's pay chest in a marsh while withdrawing to the ships. The narrative then proceeds to the German frontier in AD 43, where a new draft of recruits is arriving at the base of the Second Legion.

We are then introduced to the two main protagonists; Quintus Licinius Cato and Lucius Cornelius Macro, are both Roman soldiers. Macro, a veteran with nearly 15 years’ service (at the start of the first novel) within the Roman Army, has recently been appointed to the Centurionate; Cato is subsequently made his Optio. From the get go straight Under the Eagle into the action and the reader is given a vivid account of in the Rome Army on the Rhine Frontier. For those of you who have sampled other books in the series you will no doubt be familiar with Mr Scarrow's approach to action scenes as the reader is immersed into the narrative, better than some video game. What you also get in this book are some new and interesting plot threads and the building of solid friendship between Optio and Centurion. There is action seen in Germany where the Romans are involved battle/skirmish with German tribesman. The action later on shifts to the second invasion of Britain by a Roman army.

Mr Scarrow also pays attention to historical element - the reader gets a thought-provoking look into Roman military society and here we really get to see the differences between say the new recruit and the veteran soldiers. The dialogue is framed in such a way - so you really get a feel for the merits of this book. The pacing, as ever is good, and is pretty engrossing as well as entertaining and at time amusing. Under the Eagle is literally edge of your seat stuff, as the author has mastered the art of balancing between well moulded characters and pulling the reader into their `world'. The characters of Macro and Cato are polar opposites, for they are the centre piece of the narrative and the series, they are really well crafted characters. They do not fail in keeping the readers interest; after all `we' the readers have `invested' ourselves in their lives - warts and all.
So, if you're interested in reading about the rich tapestry of Imperial Roman army and the Empire they forged, or you are already familiar with Simon Scarrow's Eagle series - then look no further as Under the Eagle will be right up your street. Great story telling that only Simon Scarrow could have put together.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Under the Eagle, 18 Jun 2010
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Je Salter (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
Under the Eagle sees the start of the epic adventures of Centurion Macro and Cato. I actually bought 'Eagle in the Sand' first and then spent frantic weeks trying to find all the previous titles in hardback format.

Under the Eagle sees the arrival of a young Cato with the legion and his experiences as he comes to terms with life in the army with Macro in Germania. Simon Scarrow produces an excellent story with realistic characters as the battles commence and the blood flows.

Some poetic license is included as the two Roman soldiers jump geographically from region to region in the books and their capers are more like those of Roman Special Forces but they are excellent reads.

I took five of his books with me to Spain on holiday and by the time the two weeks were over, the books were read and throroughly enjoyed. Simon Scarrow for me is a better story teller than Bernard Cornwell because theres more action, more going on and his stories flow.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great debut!, 13 Mar 2014
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
A great debut for Simon Scarrow, he weaves a gritty tale of life in the Legions of Rome, combined with very believable three dimensional characters only a few historical holes, one in particular as far as I'm concerned Cato's promotion to optio on entering the Legion, was just not possible.

Footnote: The perfect companion to the Eagle series is the ROMA VICTRIX wine beaker wine beakerCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker Simon in his review says.
Beautifully sculpted it is a very handsome thing! the reason why I particularly like this cup is that it features the men and insignia of the second legion, the unit in which Cato learned how to become a soldier under the affectionate eye of macro! it's a lovely thing and has pride of place on my desk right now!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff, 11 Jun 2011
By 
Parm (A bookshop near you) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
This is the first in series of really amazing books, starring the loveable and often highly amusing Centurion Macro and his awkward Optio Cato .In this series, largely based around the invasion of Britain in 42 AD, Simon Scarrow creates astonishingly vivid characters that really do bring history to life. It includes all the ingredients of an epic: violence, heroism, loyalty,deceit, freindship and love all set in the enthralling backdrop of the Roman empire.
This book sparked off a real interest in the Roman era for me, particularly the legions depicted here in such a heoric and fascinatng light.
I am still looking for a novel of it's calibre, that can equal it for it's ability to captivate and engross the reader.
I strongly recommend these books to not only those with an interest in Roman history but also anyone who wants a spellbinding,
and thoroughly enjoyable historical novel
(Parm)
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 5 July 2014
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This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
Great value good delivery
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As good as Cornwell, 25 Feb 2011
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
Being a big Bernard Cornwell fan and having collected and read most of his books, I was looking for something similar. Simon Scarrow has not dissapointed. Just like Cornwell, his characters are easy to identify with and larger than life and the story grabs your attention from the very beginning and never lets go. I can't wait to collect the others in the series. For those that love Cornwell or good historical fiction, you could do a lot worse than give Simon Scarrow a try
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Odd use of language, 19 Jan 2011
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
Whilst the book is a very accessable and enjoyable romp it is, I feel, let down by it's use of very modern langauge and terms of reference.

All the profanity uses current anglo saxon terms where a 'by Jupiters Moon' would have been more fitting and in context. That said, the one phrase that made me wonder out loud was something along the lines 'as unsteady as an abandoned tenament building'. Now I don't claim to be an expert on Roman History and tenament buildings my well have been common place at that time but it is the image a modern dillapidated building that is conjured by this phrase. What's wrong with something along the lines of a "crumbling, wood worm ridden Pallisade"?

It's a shame really as it's a minor issue but for me it did spoil the sense of immersion. That said I will be getting the next one in the series although maybe as a library loan rather than a purchase.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What did the Romans ever do for us., 18 Oct 2010
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
Brilliant. Having read Conn Iggulden's Empire of Silver, and James Jackson's Pilgrim, thought I would have a quick perusal of Simon Scarrow's Under the Eagle. Don't know what the Romans did for us, I do know this author has an additional fan.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sceptical at first..., 25 Aug 2010
By 
Nick (Norfolk, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
I was very sceptical when buying this first book. I am interested in this period but have had little time to research it properly, and thought this might be another example of an author completely changing history to fit his plot line. I was very wrong! The history is extremely well researched, and as far as I can make out completely accurate. In which case you might think the story is dull - again, could not be more wrong! Cato and Macro are heartwarming characters (particularly as the series go on - yes, I bought them all after reading this first book) and the storyline is very entertaining. If you're even a little interested in the Roman legions or the Roman period of history, I cannot recommend this series enough!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good start to a generally brilliant series., 21 July 2010
This review is from: Under the Eagle (Paperback)
when I finished this book I could not wait to get the next one! That is how much I enjoyed it. As a Roman history enthusiast, this is just what I was looking for. The action scenes are electrifying, and nowhere did I feel that the storyline was flagging. Also, I actually learnt something. I never knew that Vespasian started his career with the legions in Germany. my only criticisms are that Scarrow does not put in enough descriptive detail of where the characters actuaaly are, and what the soldiers actually looked like. Also, the dialogue makesme feel as though Scarrow is trying to make the stroy accessible to readers by not writing anything to complicatd. I am not sure whether Romans really spoke like this, even if they were in the army. All in all though, a thouroughly enjoyable read, and a must for fans of Roman military histary.
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Under the Eagle
Under the Eagle by Simon Scarrow (Paperback - 7 Aug 2008)
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