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Spartacus: Talons of an Empire (Spartacus Chronicles Book 1) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The idea here is that Spartacus survived his famous rebellion, and is then put to bloody work for the hateful Roman overlords in return for his freedom. It's a fine premise to base a story on, but to be honest, you can imagine the protagonist as any gladiator and it'll make no difference to your enjoyment of what is a fine book.
What we have is a group of men - almost a "Dirty Dozen" of the Roman-era - taking on a dangerous mission through hostile lands and, ultimately, fighting to the brutal end in the arena.
The author sets the scenes well, drawing vivid pictures of each place in the reader's mind so it's easy to become drawn into the action as if we were right there.
The characters are fairly varied and there are some poignant, gentler moments scattered throughout which serve as an interesting and welcome diversion from the brutal action and let us see the human side of these hard fighting men.
There were a few places, though, where I felt the action jumped a little too quickly - it might have been nice for certain scenes to have lasted a bit longer, building the tension before cutting to another part of the story - but in general the pacing is very good.
I also struggled somewhat with a couple of characters' (Cassian and Spartacus) reactions - both at the time and subsequently - to certain deaths.Read more ›
His army slain or back in chains, Spartacus expects nothing but a slow death by crucifixion, but instead he finds himself before a haughty young Roman called Cassian. Cassian has a proposition for Spartacus, one that he can’t ignore if he wants his family to live. To enforce his point Cassian has a legionary slay Spartacus’ youngest son before his eyes.
With no choice but to comply Spartacus accepts Cassian’s offer; he is to use his particular skills as a gladiatorial killer in the service of Cassian’s ruthless employer. It was this same mysterious figure who ordered Cassian to kill Spartacus’ son. Cassian promises the gladiator that his family will be safe on his own estates and then, with a handpicked team, and with promises of gold if successful, Spartacus, Cassian and their comrades embark on their mission.
From fighting the Roman Empire Spartacus now finds himself a tool of one of political power brokers, striving to curtail the power of their rivals. To do this Spartacus, Cassian, et al, must fight through corruption and lawlessness only to risk all in a near suicidal gladiatorial contest.
Spartacus – Talons of an Empire is certainly action packed, with fights aplenty. The reader experiences victorious triumph and grieving loss. The villains are fantastically corrupt and evil and treachery is an ever present threat.Read more ›
That accomplished, Spartacus comes under the direct leadership of a man he learns to respect, and gathers around him a diverse band of other fighters. The scene is set for a challenging tour of operations involving hazardous journeys by land and sea, trickery and betrayal, and a final showdown as the climax of the book.
A multi-layered vision is painted of Roman society. The life a man can build for himself is defined partly by innate or learned skills, but overwhelmingly by the power of the patronage he can find. We are introduced to hierarchies of power in the Roman world, most of which are ruthless in the pursuit of their own interests and brutal towards their enemies. The picture is effective, and it didn't take long for me to decide that I would not have enjoyed living in that culture - and most likely would not have had a very long life within it.
Difficult for men, then, and many times more so for women. For them, powerful protection in the form of husband or master was a necessity, and there was basically no legal recourse against brutality. In Robert's book, women provide a background element of stability and passionate release, a desirable goal to yearn for when the fighting is done.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Brilliant reading thoroughly enjoyed it can't wait to start the next one in series well written glad it was recommendedPublished 1 month ago by Kathryn wakelin
Very good read can't wait to read the next books would strongly recommend to everyone to readPublished 1 month ago by jonathan moon
What if Spartacus, legendary leader of the slave rebellion against the might of the Roman Empire, had not perished as we have been taught, but was spared, to become a lethal... Read morePublished 3 months ago by K Cowdall
Spartacus: Talons of an Empire is a fun take on Spartacus not perishing to the Romans, but continuing on to kick @$$. Read morePublished 4 months ago by brandt johnson
Really impressive debut. The story was captivating from page one and the characters demanded your attention - beautifully crafted and well paced. Left me wanting more. Read morePublished 5 months ago by pete
I'm sure that for anyone who grew up when I did, Kirk Douglas was Spartacus, a brilliant but historically incorrect movie. In Spartacus: Talons of an Empire, Mr. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Paul Bennett
wowsers, first time of reading a book of this nature, and what a read it was. Very descriptive, could almost feel the characters and setting. Read morePublished 18 months ago by susan bird
Suitable for an easy read even if you get interrupted! Keeps your interest to the end and to read the follow up!Published 20 months ago by bugsbid