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A Mist of Prophecies (Gordianus the Finder Book 9) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The Mists of Prophecy is the latest in Steven Saylor's Rome Sub Rosa series and marks the return of Gordianus the Finder. While Rome anxiously waits to hear the outcome of the war between Pompey and Caesar a beautiful young seeress, the aptly named Cassandra, is poisoned. As Gordianus investigates her death he comes into contact with the wives of many of the men that have been at the centre of Saylor's earlier mysteries and reminisces about his own intense relationship with the murdered woman.
As with his previous books Saylor manages to weave historical fact and fiction so tightly that readers may be tempted to consult the history books to establish which events are documented fact and which only occurred in the imagination of the author. The supporting cast of recurring characters continues to increase which each novel but now at the expense of some stalwarts (eg. Gordianus and his older son are suddenly distant for not apparent reason) although any appearance by Clodia is worth sacrificing a considerably less interesting character for.
After a disappointing entry with Last Seen in Massallia Saylor has had a return to form with this book and although it does not reach the heights of Murder on the Appian Way fans will find much to enjoy. As with the most recent novels in the series a more sombre atmosphere pervades this book than in his earlier works. The disintegration of his relationship with his son Meto, a devoted follower of Caesar, weighs heavily on Gordianus's mind as does the mysterious illness of his wife and crushing debt. This Gordianus is not the sardonic observer of earlier novels but a tired and aging man on whom political upheaval and his own personal problems are taking their toll.Read more ›
In this book Saylor creates a first class mystery which seems to have a life of its own. Caesar is away from Rome engaging Pompey, his rival, in battle, leaving lesser mortals to care for the city and the citizens' problems - not altogether satisfactorily. Times are hard and there is widespread unrest against which Saylor weaves a tale of intrigue and deceit wherein from beginning to almost the end it is never clear what roles Cassandra, the young seeress, and the most important females of Rome play. Saylor's tapestry contains threads of the culture and society of the time integral to the mystery adding shadow and light to the tale. All in all this is a thoroughly interesting and enjoyable read.
An enjoyable read, but below Saylor's usually flawless standards.
Suffice to say, this is as good as the rest of the series.
I haven't read any of the previous books of this series, or, in fact, any of Saylor's work. Not a bad introduction; This is a solid enough read, it is more or less self contained though, inevitably, past volumes are referenced and the ending leaves plenty of loose ends for the next episode.
Told in a dual narrative structure, in the first person, the two strands are the events leading up to and following on from the death of Cassandra, a mysterious prophetess. This structure is maintained almost to the end of the book and is well done.
The set up, a collection of Rome's most powerful women present themselves as suspects at the girl's funeral, feels very forced but apart from this one scene, which is needed for plot purposes of course, the historical detail and background is convincing.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
boring...skipped and skimmed...mccoullogh's books about rome so much better...too bad...nothing gripped me in this onePublished 10 months ago by april
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