In ancient Rome, the number of slaves was far greater than that of free citizens. As a result, often the people Romans feared most were the "enemies at home," the slaves under their own roofs. Because of this, Roman law decreed that if the head of a household was murdered at home, and the culprit wasn't quickly discovered, his slaves - all of them, guilty or not - were presumed responsible and were put to death...without exception.
Flavia Albia is the adopted daughter of Marcus Didius Falco and Helena Justina. From her mother, she learned how to blend in at all levels of society; from her father, she learned the tricks of their mutual professional trade. But her wits and (frequently) sharp tongue are hers alone. Now, working as a private informer in Rome during the reign of Domitian, Flavia has taken over her father’s old ramshackle digs at Fountain Court in the Surbura district, where she plies her trade with energy, determination, and the usual Falco luck.
"Prefer dead old dad"
From renowned author Lindsey Davis, creator of the much-loved character, Marcus Didius Falco and his friends and family, comes the second novel in her all-new series set in Ancient Rome. We first met Flavia Albia, Falco's feisty adopted daughter, in The Ides of April. Albia is a remarkable woman in what is very much a man's world: Young, widowed and fiercely independent, she lives alone on the Aventine Hill in Rome and makes a good living as a hired investigator.
Falco: the new generation - Introducing Flavia Albia.Flavia Albia is the adopted daughter of a famous investigating family. In defiance of tradition, she lives alone on the colourful Aventine Hill, and battles out a solo career in a male-dominated world. As a woman and an outsider, Albia has special insight into the best, and worst, of life in ancient Rome.A female client dies in mysterious circumstances. Albia investigates and discovers there have been many other strange deaths all over the city, yet she is warned off by the authorities.
"Are women really that stupid?"
Tulisa Contostavlos is one of the most talented and high-profile recording artists working in the UK today. She has three platinum N-Dubz albums, four MOBO awards, a ground-breaking drama series, two documentaries, a MIND award and an X Factor judge's win under her belt. Not bad for a girl who's not yet 25. But this is not just a tale of glittering success.
Preparations for the Ghastly-Gorm Garden Party and bake-off are under way. Celebrity cooks are arriving at the hall for the big event and Maltravers, the indoor gamekeeper, is acting suspiciously. Elsewhere at Ghastly-Gorm Ada's wardrobe-dwelling lady's maid Marylebone has received a marriage proposal. Ada vows to aid the course of true love and find out what Maltravers is up to, but amidst all this activity, everyone appears to have forgotten her birthday!
Ada Goth is the only child of Lord Goth. The two live together in the enormous Ghastly-Gorm Hall. It’s hard for her to make friends and she's rather lonely. Then one day William and Emily Cabbage come to stay at the house, and together with a ghostly mouse called Ishmael they begin to unravel a dastardly plot. Ada and her friends must work together to foil the evil gamekeeper, Maltravers, before it's too late!
It's December 23rd and Clara Dunphy is running around Oxford Street like a blue-arsed fly trying to buy presents. She wants to make Christmas perfect: it's a lifelong ambition. And a challenging one at the best of times, even without taking her sixteen guests - sorry, "loved ones" - and their varying degrees of social dysfunction into account. Meanwhile, something weird has happened to her marriage, and the ho, ho, ho is thin on the ground. Why does Christmas have such an emotional hold over us? Why does family stuff hit the peak of its madness on December the 25th?
People are flocking to Ghastly-Gorm Hall to compete in Lord Goth's Literary Dog Show. The judges are in place, and the contestants are all ready to win. But there's something strange going on at Ghastly-Gorm - mysterious footprints, howls in the night and some suspiciously chewed shoes. Can Ada, the Attic Club and their new friends, the Vicarage sisters, work out what's going on before the next full moon?
For 30 years, best friends Stephanie and Philippa have been practically inseparable. There's nothing they would not do for one another. Until a few simple words change everything. 'I need you to say that I was with you.' Steph, eternally solid, considerate and dependable, is begging her best friend to lie to the police as she's desperately trying to conceal two shocking secrets to protect her family.