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on 19 March 2012
The idea of exploring the Roman navy is worthwhile, and the creation of that navy is obviously a good place to start - on an unfamiliar element, facing an expert and equally strong foe, with a nerve-wracking deadline to meet, all is set for a strong storyline. Sadly, the writing does not match the possibilities; if Scarrow and O'Brian are the Premier League, then this novelist is middle level Ryman League.

Having said that, such teams can achieve promotion; what is needed here is a lot more research and a decent editor. The latter could have emphasised the need for characterisation and cut some of the major infelicities ("indeterminately" is probably the worst of far too many), while evening the pace - other reviewers have commented on the rushed ending. Research, of the sort even we amateurs expect, would have avoided the major errors in shipbuilding techniques, the use of slaves at this period, the substitution of Praetorians (vowed to the protection of the _Senate_, for heaven's sake!) for lictors, the introduction of lorica segmentata some three centuries early, etc., etc., etc.

I won't bore you with an exhaustive list of factual mistakes, but they were there and need to be corrected if this series is to go anywhere. Given the historical situation John Stack could still gain promotion, but he has a lot of work to do first.
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on 25 June 2012
Has great action scenes of the First Punic War (c 256 BC), while highlighting the political calumny, corruption, conniving etc. behind the scenes on both the Carthaginian and Roman sides.
I found it to be historically accurate (Wiki-wise).
I read the entire series, and ordered his latest book: Armada (c 1587 AD).
Even though I previously knew the outcome of (if not all the details of) the various battles in the First Punic War I was still spell bound by the action scenes.
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on 31 August 2017
Very well written and the explanations very informtive
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on 22 May 2011
Not much I cannot say that hasn't been written in the previous views.

I feel that some were a little bit harsh. Although it is historical fiction, I do not read hisfict for research, therefore if the author has used his artistic license to alter certain facts for rendering a more interesting read to the readers, it does not bother me.

The story itself covers an interesting period of Roman history, plenty of action and fighting. However don't expect to find any deviation from standard roman novels
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on 19 February 2017
My wife has now read the trilogy and thought they were great.
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on 15 June 2012
This was an enjoyable read although at some times the politics of Rome and the senate etc all got to be a bit too dry for me. but historically it's an accurate picture of what life must have been like as a non-Roman, Roman... read the book and you'll see what I mean!
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on 11 July 2016
A thirst for more.
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on 28 January 2016
First class, very pleased
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on 11 September 2014
I found the story difficult to get into in the beginning but persevered and finally enjoyed story line and cast. I shall certainly purchase a second novel I the future
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on 13 August 2013
Don't normally read books of this ilke.
but I read the sample liked it!
read the book loved it!!
I found the story compeling set at a good pace, easy to read and a great insight into the Era that the book is set in, great characters too.
loved it so much I bought the second book in the trilogy 'Captain of Rome' which I'm reading now.
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