©2008 Mary Beard (P)2010 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
This is a great look at Pompeii, I learn something new each time I listen. Phyllida Nash is a good choice as narrator, her accent is pleasant and she modulates her tone well.
Two minor criticisms:
The narrator appears not to know how to pronounce Latin and Italian. Cena (dinner) is not pronounced sea-na, but chena. Bugs me every time I hear it.
The author - very slightly - imposes her own 21st century sensibilities and aesthetic judgment on what she is describing. Slight but somewhat troubling.
This book was recommended on the History of Rome podcast, I'm glad I acquired it, I'll be listening and re-listening often.
An well researched well written piece of detailed history about what it was like to live in Pompeii in the lead up to it being buried under the ash and lava from the volcanic eruption. The author debunks many of the popular myths about life in Pompeii and Roman life generally as she bases her story about the town on detailed archaeological and contempory document evidence.
She covers every facet of life in town, what the roads would have been like, the local politics, the everyday life of the rich and poor.
A very interesting history, well written and well read.
A solid history book with good narration. This would be a tough slog unless you have a genuine interest in Roman history. This would best be reviewed before or after a visit to the town itself.
The reader is too formal and doesn't seem interested in the material. A different style would have made the town come alive.
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