There was a time when Cicero held Caesar’s life in the palm of his hand. But now Caesar is the dominant figure, and Cicero’s life is in ruins.
Exiled, separated from his wife and children, his possessions confiscated, his life constantly in danger, Cicero is tormented by the knowledge that he has sacrificed power for the sake of his principles.
His comeback requires wit, skill and courage - and, for a brief and glorious period, the legendary orator is once more the supreme senator in Rome.
But politics is never static, and no statesman, however cunning, can safeguard against the ambition and corruption of others.
Riveting and tumultuous, Dictator encompasses some of the most epic events in human history yet is also an intimate portrait of a brilliant, flawed, frequently fearful yet ultimately brave man - a hero for his time and for ours.
©2015 Robert Harris (P)2015 Random House AudioBooks
Read the first book in the pair in hardback, but the wonderful voice acting in this sequel really brought it to life.
"It is a case for my defence"
“I may have lost the past and lost the present, but I might yet win the future.”
Cicero and Tiro when in his last days discussing his letters and that is Cicero’s conclusion of how they will represent him and when Tiro asks what letters they should choose Cicero responds, all “I must stand naked like a greek statue”.
This has been a long journey that has seen this great man triumph and fall stand again, change, grive, and fight for his beliefs and ultimately suffer at the hands of treason, paying the ultimate price.
This for me was the most humane of this volumes, showing more facets to this man life than any of the other volumes, it bring his humanity, his frailty, and his love to the front, making him a greater person than a politician or a great orator. It shows him at his best, and perhaps at his worst as a politico manipulating and plotting at a tremendous cost of lives for what he thinks should be. We also see his tremendous love for his daughter drag him to despair and ultimately to the heights of creativity, he also demonstrates his true friendship to Tiro with many actions that show even a modicum of humility.
This is an amazing era with important protagonist and events that resonate through time, made more clear by this exceptional books that exposes us to the story of power that is part of our culture, showing us at every turn that we are still making the same mistakes and suffering the same destinies that power and politics conjure up with their black magic.
A book for lovers of history and fiction because the truth in this book has not been surpassed by any fiction.
Needless to say, Bill Wallis is sadly missed. He was fabulous as Tiro, and in so many other rôles! It took a wee while to adapt to David Rintoul, though I've enjoyed his reading very much in other books. I'd got the feeling of Tiro as an educated provincial, but here Rintoul sounds upper-crust and establishment. Still, we all needed to hear the end of Cicero's life, and even more come to a resolution to the life of Tiro, who lived so, so long, and survived "interesting" times.
Robert Harris has, however, kept me enthralled through 3 fat volumes on the life of Cicero, studied in Latin in my schooldays and written off as a pompous old bore. He was that, but more too. "Non modo, sed etiam."
"A good comparison to Shakespeare's play"
A very polished performance. Caesar comes across very differently from Shakespeare's play - he comes across as cold, calculating and ruthless, not the great statesman murdered by jealous rivals.
"A great end to a great trilogy"
Been waiting for ages to listen to the final chapter of this series. Especially after the how the second book finished.
I would say it was not the best of the trilogy but in all a good book and a must if you have heard the other two. If you have not heard the other two do them first the series is good.
"An enjoyable series"
The series itself was very enjoyable, although this instalment was a little weaker than the last, which I really put down to the narrative style that is, by its nature, lacking in action. This makes me wonder if I'd have enjoyed listening to it as much as I did, had I not been so interested in the subject... I will certainly now read more Robert Harris ☺
It takes 20 or so minutes to get used to the narrator but after that I was gripped by this classic story. It has everything you would expect and more. A must read.
Listened to the whole trilogy on Audible and now feel properly bereft that it is over. The most wonderful, absorbing story, marvellously told.
I was really looking forward to this, having enjoyed and admired the earlier ones in the series about the life of Cicero, which I read in print. But this account seemed rather pedestrian and plodding, with no real insights into the character of the people playing out this important episode in Roman history. Robert Harris's writing style is fine, and the narrator did a good job, reading with clarity and good phrasing, so I can't quite put my finger on why I was not absorbed. I finished the book because I felt I should but with no great enthusiasm.
As this is (mostly) historical fact there is little that could be changed.
I don't think I have heard David Rintoul before, but I quite liked his narrative voice.
Probably not, now I have read the book.
I probably sound as if I am carping and being picky. Others may enjoy it more than I did. But in spite of a good narrator I think this book would be better to read than to listen to. it would be helpful to have lists of the main characters and maps to refer to, impossible in an audiobook of course.
"Well worth the wait!"
Robert Harris has served his fans well in this brilliant installment of the Cicero series. May he take up his pen again and give us more of the same. Bravo!
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