The third novel in Simon Scarrow's best-selling Roman series.
After a series of bloody battles, Camulodunum (modern-day Colchester) has fallen to the invading Roman army. The Emperor has returned to Rome, leaving the fearless Centurion Macro and his young Optio, Cato, to rest and regroup, along with the rest of the Second Legion.
As their leader, General Plautius, plans the next phase of their campaign, word arrives that the ship carrying his family to join him was wrecked in a storm off the south coast. His wife and children have fallen into the hands of a dark sect of Druids, who now demand the return of those of their brotherhood taken prisoner by the Romans. Unless their demands are met within one month, Plautius's family will be burned alive. Will Cato and Macro discover where the Druids are hiding their hostages? And can they find some way to rescue them before time runs out?
©2002 Simon Scarrow (P)2013 Headline Digital
I am an avid eclectic reader.
This is the third book in the series. Audible did not have book two available. The year is 44 AD during the Roman invasion of Britain. This is a historical military novel about two soldiers Macro and Cato of the Roman Second Legion.
A sudden storm strikes the Roman fleet bringing food, supplies, reinforcements and the wife, Lady Pomponia, and children of commanding General Plautus. The lead ship with Lady Pomponia aboard is driven off course before crashing against the rocks while attempting to beach the ship. The family is captured by the Druids. The Druids are attempting to exchange the General’s family for a number of captured Druids. Macro and Cato are sent to free the General’s family.
The book is well written and the plot is strong. Scarrow has some dramatic battle scenes along with lots of action. A major battle is fought at Camulodunum or what is modern day Colchester. The author also provides insight into the soldier’s life in the Roman Legion. Scarrow also provides some information about Celtic culture and religion as well as information about the Druids. I am not an expert about this time frame in history so cannot say how accurate Scarrow is in the historical information. I did note two items, first, he said the ships had slave chained to the oars. I know this is inaccurate as the Roman’s only had free men on the oars of ships. The second item he gives the impression the Druids are a tribe and the Celts are a tribe. It is my understanding that the Druids were the educated class of the Celtic peoples not a separate tribe of people. The book is easy to read and is a real page turner. David Thorpe does an excellent job narrating the book.
The story line for this 3rd novel isn’t quite up to par with the previous two, but is still good. Simon Scarrow’s narration continues to greatly add to the audio version, and I certainly hope they don’t change narrators for follow on books.
If you haven’t been introduced to this series, I might want to start with the first book. If you’ve finished books one and two, and are considering the third book, I recommend you do so.
"And here I'm stuck!"
It's a real shame (at least at the time of writing). This is such a great series, extremely well narrated, I love the characters but there are unfortunately gaps after this in the series which even after a year or two show no sign of being filled on Audible.
I'm determined to listen to these in order so will just have to wait. These books are still definitely worth reading but check out the gaps in the series first so you know what the situation is.
In the top 10 percentile.
Um... kinda hard without spoilers, but probably when Macro pretty much offered to pick a fight with a god.
The rescue at the cart. Very tense and with plenty of emotion, wonderfully conveyed.
I doubt I'm the first to draw comparisons between the Eagle series and Sharpe, but it is impossible not to see it. Swap Wellington for Vespasia, Sharpe for Macro and Harper for Cato and you're pretty much there. Well.. in terms of story format anyway. The characters are very different and are wonderfully realised by David Thorpe's outstanding performance. His skill with developing unique and identifiable voices for each and every character, while at the same time not compromising on the quality of the performance is remarkable. He has quickly become one of my favourite narrators.
The story of the book is pretty simple, but it is the telling of it which draws you in. The characters are wonderful - Macro is especially enjoyable as the simple, brutal Centurion who nevertheless is not totally inured to the horrors of war.
If you want solid historical military adventure then it's hard to think of any series better. Nor can I imagine it being performed any better than that shown here.
I found myself immersed in this story from the start. Very well written. Good continuation of the stories previously written.
Great follow up to the first 2 books in the series.Can't wait for the next one.
I try not to compare. I take each book on its own merits.
Storming the Hill Fort.
Would recommend to anyone.
"Does what it says on the tin."
familar hero's mixed with true historical names makes for a wining combo. I loved it
engaging story with engaging characters. I find myself looking for the next in the series when I have finished a book.
"Continues to entertain"
Far better,this brings the whole story to life and that atmosphere of the times.a great listen
The great battle and how the heroes survived by depending on each other,macro and Cato are brilliant
His tone and pace bring the story to life,keeping the listener on the edge of their seats
"love the series"
this series just gets better and better!...although somewhat predictable. still, thoroughly enjoyed listening to this
"Great story - where's the next"
Great books-have listened to the first three but don't want to skip two books to book six.
-Please can you release books 3 and 4 in the series! That wold be brill.
Nice bit of escapism with a Romans on Britain slant. Well written and narrated. I could listen to these all day. Wait a sec that's just what o did today.
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