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Warrior of Rome: The Amber Road (Warrior of Rome 6) Hardcover – 18 Jul 2013

3.8 out of 5 stars 102 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Michael Joseph (18 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718155955
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718155957
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 4 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (102 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 264,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Blazes with searing scholarship (The Times)

Sidebottom has the touch of an exceptionally gifted storyteller, drawing on prodigious learning (Tim Severin, author of the 'Vikings' trilogy)

Gruesome, Gladiator-style battle scenes and well-researched detail (Shortlist)

About the Author

Dr Harry Sidebottom is a Fellow of St Benet's Hall and lecturer at Lincoln College, Oxford, where he specializes in ancient warfare and classical art.


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By JPS TOP 500 REVIEWER on 25 July 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Regardless of whether this book is cheap or expensive, the purpose of this review is to try to explain why I believe it is worth five stars. As far as I am concerned, it ticks all my boxes, with a couple of original touches added to the mix. These gave me the impression that the author may even have enjoyed writing his book. For a piece of historical fiction like this one, there are at least three and possibly even five such "boxes" to tick for me to "love it", to use Amazon terminology for a five-star rating.

First, there is the historical context. The story takes place in AD 264, within one of the less well-known periods of the Roman Empire sometimes called "the Third Century Crisis" and as the Empire is torn by multiple usurpations, civil wars and invasions from Germanic Barbarians by land and sea all along the Rhine and the Danube. A few years before, Britain, Gaul and Spain had seceded, with Posthumus, a Batavian general, having been proclaimed Emperor. Odenathus, Lord of Palmyra, controls the Eastern part after having defeated the Persians. At least officially and for the time being, he acts there as the viceroy of Emperor Gallienus who still controls the central part of the Empire. The latter has been facing one crisis after another (and, at times, several almost simultaneously) for most of his reign which starting in AD 253.

Unsurprisingly, since the author is also an accomplished historian, the historical context is very well presented, with summaries of previous events (both those that took place in previous volumes and events that have not been described in detail) being summarized through the reflections of some of the main characters.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good read but doesn't read easily as there are too many Latin words, would be better with an appendix, especially for the place names and the modern country equivalent. However I enjoy any novel about ancients be it Rome or any other 'empire' recommended
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have to say that I enjoyed this book as much as all the others in this excellent series. Yet again it not only strives, but succeeds in entertaining royally and widening the reader's knowledge. The hero, Ballista is a little older and perhaps more vulnerable. He not only has his own problems in his camp to deal with, but the infighting and jealousies of his siblings to contend with. All this in the far northern Europe of antiquity, a place where any of the local peoples would as soon slice you up with a sword or drown you in a bog under a hurdle as welcome you as a friend and ally.

I really cannot fault it. Should I have one criticism, it's that inevitably the strange names, whether they be place names or names of peoples or tribes, to a greater or lesser degree will be unknown to the reader. All is revealed at the end of the book of course where you can look them up. Not too much of a problem with an actual physical book, but somewhat frustrating with the Kindle edition. Perhaps something that those responsible for Kindle software could address. This is not a criticism of this excellent book, or indeed Harry Sidebottom though, I hasten to add.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
"The Amber Road" is the 6th title in Harry Sidebottom's "Warrior of Rome" series. it is set in the middle of the third century when the Roman empire was faced by invasion from without and mutinies leading to instability at the top, with Emperors coming and going with bewildering speed. Our hero Ballista, an Angle prince who was sent to Rome as a hostage and has risen to great prominence, is sent on a mission to his birthplace to win their support in the struggle of rival emperors. he faces danger from the Goths who have a blood feud with him, and he is hardly welcome in his old home where times have changed and new men have arisen. Sidebottom has improved as a writer as the series goes on. His characters are believable and multi-faceted. his prose can be a little pedestrian at times, but his description of places, people and things are a testimony to well researched material, thoughtfully presented. As a lover of Ancient History I find the story fascinating and the plot well worked. I await book 7 eagerly.
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Format: Paperback
My review gives 5 stars for the series (so far)..Doctor Sidebottom brings the chaotic period of the 3rd century to life with the stroke of a pen. Over the six books the main characters battle siege, betrayal, slavery, murder and everything else a barbarian general in Rome's 3rd century armies can expect and more.
As the Author is a scholar of the time. It is laced with people who existed from the great and good to the not so great or good. Looking forward to book 7 and the Throne Of The Ceasers is another great series by this writter. That is set just before this one and depending on how that delevops, could be a forerunner of the Warrior Of Rome series.
But only complaint I have is that book 6 does finish rather vaguely, as too many loose ends left untied. Or is that the greater plan for book 7?
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Now up there with Conn Iggulden. Really 1st class. Ballistics is a real hero with none of the politically correct softness of our modern age. Strong and full of integrity. The story Really feels historically accurate re the times.
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