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Persona Non Grata: A Novel of the Roman Empire | [Ruth Downie]

Persona Non Grata: A Novel of the Roman Empire

At long last, Gaius Petreius Ruso and his companion, Tilla, are headed home - to Gaul. Having received a note consisting only of the words "COME HOME!" Ruso has (reluctantly, of course) pulled up stakes and brought Tilla to meet his family. But the reception there is not what Ruso has hoped for: no one will admit to sending for him, and his brother Lucius is hoping he'll leave.
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Publisher's Summary

At long last, Gaius Petreius Ruso and his companion, Tilla, are headed home - to Gaul. Having received a note consisting only of the words "COME HOME!" Ruso has (reluctantly, of course) pulled up stakes and brought Tilla to meet his family. But the reception there is not what Ruso has hoped for: no one will admit to sending for him, and his brother Lucius is hoping he'll leave.

With Tilla getting icy greetings from his relatives, Lucius's brother-in-law mysteriously drowned at sea, and the whole Ruso family teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, it's hard to imagine an unhappier reunion. That is, until Severus, the family's chief creditor, winds up dead, and the real trouble begins.

Engrossing, intricate, and - as always - wonderfully comic, Ruth Downie's latest is a brilliant new installment in this irresistible series. This is everything we've come to expect from our charming, luckless hero.

Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend us your ears: listen to another Novel of the Roman Empire.

©2009 Ruth Downie; (P)2009 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"This lively sequel to Medicus and Terra Incognita continues Downie's delightful historical series.... Highly recommended." (Library Journal)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (460 )
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  •  
    Marie 01-20-12
    Marie 01-20-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    623
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    "The best so far"

    A treat to listen to. The story moved well and surprising twists kept the reader guessing. Each book has gotten better. I am looking forward to the next. I would have given the story a 5 but I agree with some others that the setting could easily be changed to another time period except for a few details. The Roman aspect could be stronger.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wadie Santa Ana, CA, United States 11-28-09
    Wadie Santa Ana, CA, United States 11-28-09 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Ah men!!"

    Ruso is such a "guy". Tila, well she could easily be a warrior or just a brat. This story has a nice little mystery. Better still it has lots of back story for Ruso. You get a much better idea of why he is who he is:) I can't wait till they have kids!!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tony 05-24-13
    Tony 05-24-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "CSI- ROMAN EMPIRE !"

    With no organized police force someone has to step and find the citizens who commit the dastardly deed. Alight, fun read with a look into Roman day to day life. Ruth Downie does enough with her characters to keep you listening. Simon Vance is one of my three favourite male narrators ( Humphrey Bower and Scott Brick are the others ) and he doesn't disappoint with excellent representations of the varied male characters from different backgrounds and the many wonderful female 'persona'... Worth the credit for light entertainment but too bad that the first two books of the series are not available on Audible.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark M Miller Kissimmee, Florida United States 07-11-15
    Mark M Miller Kissimmee, Florida United States 07-11-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Another great Ruth Downie Novel in the Medicus series"

    If you've never read a Ruth Downie novel, go back to Medicus and start there! They really should be read in order. Having said that, by highly recommend this one. It certainly one of her best. I've recommended this series to a whole bunch of people all of whom have really liked it. Of course Simon Vance is the best of all readers. When I'm looking for a new audio book, I just search under his name because from Patrick O'Brian's Jack Aubrey to Sherlock Holmes to Medicus, Simon Vance gets every voice perfect. He is the man with a thousand voices and hundreds of accents!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ark1836 05-28-15
    Ark1836 05-28-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Continuing an Enjoyable Series"

    This book continues Ruth Downie's enjoyable series set in Roman Britain. As someone who isn't typically a fan of mysteries, I can't comment on the quality of that element of the story. However, I really enjoy the description of life in Ancient Rome. Ms. Downie clearly did her research, and it shows through in the book. This is well-worth the time to listen, and the narrator does an excellent job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    c Lantau, Hong Kong 04-01-15
    c Lantau, Hong Kong 04-01-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Excellent series"
    Who was your favorite character and why?

    lead character -the doctor - is both appealing and appropriate to his time. Author manages to develop both characters life stories through the series and put them in middle of a murder plot without being too far fetched. I recommend reading from start of series. I like Roman era stories but I think anyone who likes mysteries will like.


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    Excellent


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    susan Port Perry, ON, Canada 03-01-14
    susan Port Perry, ON, Canada 03-01-14 Member Since 2014

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Inspector Gamache does the Roman Empire"

    Wasn't quite sure what to expect and purchased this book based on the reviews.
    Interesting story line and learned about Roman history in the process.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JB 09-19-13
    JB 09-19-13 Member Since 2015
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    "Compelling story but ..."

    I find it a struggle to find books in the historical novels niche that are NOT just all actions or all soap opera. A lot of the popular series out there now seem like they were written for teenagers.

    This is closer to the balance I was hoping for. It will appeal to mature adults, the story is good and I learn to care about the characters, but it is essentially a "who dunit?" So if you were looking for Roman wars and action, you will not find it here. Sometimes you almost forget you are in the Roman Empire at all.

    I wish thee was a little more action, but it was worth the money I spent for sure. I will get the next book in the series later, once I get a break from the crime mystery genre.

    The narrator is first rate, excellent!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pegeen 07-13-13
    Pegeen 07-13-13

    reading is pure joy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "fun but obvious -- like a good bowl of popcorn"
    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    more complex characters


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    smooth , very good tone and pacing


    Did Persona Non Grata inspire you to do anything?

    you are kidding, right?!


    Any additional comments?

    does what it does well -- and then you are done. snack food with some historical seasoning thrown in.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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