4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Marching With Caesar-Conquest of Gaul: Second Edition: 2 (Paperback)
The perfect gift for all Roman history enthusiasts is THE ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKERCalix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker
As an ex British Para with a long service record, amateur historian and complete aficionado of Rome and its Legions, I congratulate Ron Peake for the in-depth research that he has undertaken to bring his readers, what I feel, is one of the best novels ever written on the Roman Legionary.
THE PERFECT COMPANION TO THIS EXCELLENT SERIES IS, THE ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKER. Ron Peake is the proud owner of one, this is what he has to say about it:
The workmanship is outstanding, and while I am certainly no expert on pieces of this type, it has a substantial feel to it; when I pick it up there's nothing flimsy about it and one can feel and see the craftsmanship that went into it. The engraved figures are extraordinarily detailed; All in all I couldn't be happier with the Calix and what it represents. Truly Rome is eternal if even now people around the world are still interested in the Legions, and this Calix is a worthy representative of that time and place!Calix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker
What puts this novel head and shoulders above contemporary authors including Scarrow, Sidebottom, Iggulden and others, is the FLAWLESS sense of realism throughout, which is amplified by the authors own military experience.
The character of Titus Pullus, the main protagonist, embarks on his military career at the age of 16, he is inducted into the X Legion, from this moment on his life is dramatically changed, he experiences the harsh introduction to discipline, training, and above all: the camaraderie. This was the principal formula for the ancient world's finest fighting machine, the Roman Legion.
Two thousand years later, that basic formula is still applied (with rigor) to our elite units today
Some reviewers state that the book is over long, mainly because the author describes, in great detail, the above formula; one must remember, that the main reason the Romans triumphed time and again over their enemies, although on many occasions vastly outnumbered, was because of the said formula. As the 1st century historian Josephus stated :
"It would not be wrong to describe their exercises as bloodless battles and their battles bloody exercises".
For my part, I understand perfectly the reason Ron Peake delved into so much detail in regard to the formula, to help the reader understand what made the Romans Victorious.
To summarise: The book is written in the first person narrative, which in this case enhances the authors descriptive powers to the point that one feels a personnel affinity with Titus Pullus and his tent party. All aspects are covered: the arduous life of a legionary, interspersed with humour, boredom, and the mental and physical trauma of battle, all the soldiers lot.
Although 662 pages long I found myself completely immersed, and memories of my own experiences came flooding back with each chapter.
I highly recommend this book to all aficionados, and anyone remotely interested in Roman military history.
To Ron Peake, Ad Victorem spolias.
Calix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker