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Publisher's Summary

What if you suddenly discovered that you were not who you thought you were - that your true family history had been hidden from you since birth? What if the truth about your origins would cause others to despise you? What if the man who had arranged the deception was seriously ill and needed your help? What if you were a slave and that man held your life in his hands - and you his? 

These are some of the questions examined in the first two volumes of the new historical trilogy A Slave’s Story.  

A Rooster for Asklepios centers on Marcus, a slave in the household of Lucius Coelius Felix who enjoys a better life than most slaves (and many free citizens) as the secretary and accountant of a wealthy aristocrat. His master is rising in the civic hierarchy of the Roman colony of Antioch-near-Pisidia (Central Turkey), and his responsibilities and income are growing as well. If this continues, he could soon earn enough to buy his freedom, set up a small business, maybe even marry.  

Then disaster strikes, and his master falls into a deep depression that is exacerbated by a nagging illness that his physician seems unable to heal. The future looks bleak until the physician receives a dream in which the healing god Asklepios seems to be calling Lucius to journey hundreds of miles across Western Asia Minor to his sanctuary at Pergamon for treatment and, if all goes well, a cure. 

Accompanied by Marcus and his new wife, Selena, Lucius embarks on a long and eventful journey in which both master and slave encounter people and ideas that challenge long-held beliefs about themselves, their society, and the world around them. Values are questioned, loyalties tested, and identities transformed in a story that brings to life a corner of the Roman world that has been neglected by previous storytellers.

Christopher D. Stanley is a professor who studies and writes about the social and religious history of the Greco-Roman world, with special attention to early Judaism and Christianity.

©2020 Christopher D Stanley (P)2021 Christopher D Stanley

What listeners say about A Rooster for Asklepios

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An accurate historical fiction

If you ever wanted to know what life was like for a slave in ancient Rome, you will really enjoy this book. Very detailed depictions of daily life and historically accurate drama. Learning about all the similarities between now and then was fascinating and kept me engaged all the way through.

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A real "stinker"

Maybe the least engaging, most annoying male narrator I've heard on any Audible selection - and my library contains over 1,200 titles. Distracting mispronunciations of common English words and little differentiation among characters' voices. Also, way too much excruciatingly detailed info on one main character's intestinal maladies and their resultant embarrassments and inconveniences (see headline). Ugh.
Will try to return.

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Amazing Story!

The author creates a fun and enjoyable experience while also learning a great deal of information from the time period. An instant classic. The use of period accurate pronunciations was a nice touch as well, and the narrator's vocal range was impressive!

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  • Tom Baker
  • 06-13-21

Excellent Cultural History Lesson in an OK story

As a student of ancient history I found the accuracy and attention to historical details in this novel very good. This book is a great way to learn about different aspects of Romam life in 1st century AD Turkey and beyond.

I would say though that the story is fine. it's not bad as I listened to it all the way through and will listen to the next one. However, it is was a bit too slow and ploddy at times I found. Also, if your looking for 'action' or excitement (sort of like Simon Scarrow has in his novels) then look elsewhere as your be disappointed.

Overall, I would say this is a great cultural history lesson wrapped in an alright story.