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Imperial Governor  By  cover art

Imperial Governor

By: George Shipway
Narrated by: Jeremey Arthur
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Publisher's summary

Londinium is burning. 

Gaius Suetonius Paulinus, newly appointed governor of Roman Britain, is charged by an increasingly unstable Emperor Nero with a difficult task - the untamed island on the fringes of the empire must earn a profit. To do so, Suetonius pursues the last of the Druids into Wales and, along the way, subdues the fractious Celtic chieftains who sit atop a fortune in gold and rare metals. 

Meanwhile, in the provincial capital of Londinium, war is brewing. As Nero's corrupt tax officials strip the British tribes of their wealth and dignity, an unlikely leader arises - Queen Boudicca, chieftain of the Iceni, who unites the tribes of Britain and leads them on a furious and bloody quest for vengeance and liberty. 

A novel told in the form of a memoir, Imperial Governor is a compelling and impeccably researched portrait of Gaius Suetonius Paulinus, Roman general and first-century governor of Britannia, who unexpectedly found himself facing one of the bloodiest rebellions against Roman rule. Shipway's masterful military adventure has long been considered one of the most accomplished works of historical fiction set in the Roman Era, providing fascinating detail of life in Roman Britain and within the Roman Legions - and a riveting saga of uprisings, war, and conquest in the ancient world.

©2018 George Shipway (P)2018 ListenUp Audiobooks

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A Haunting Reflection

Four decades of reading this novel and it never fails to reveal more of modern culture. Now this Audible presentation of highest quality and adaptation reinforces those revelations, like a veteran’s cohort stepping into a battle gap! Shipway’s use of the first person is brilliant via G Suetonius Paulinus. This is a man’s story, no doubt, yet woven and clad throughout and within are exquisite glimpses of many peculating issues of today. Race. Privilege. Greed. Rule of Law. Expansionists economic theory. Political intrigue. Shifting moral winds. Dignity. Religious tolerance and intolerance. Love. Fear. Devotion. Pride. Humility. Incredulous myopia. The style wraps you up like a warm (not too soft) woolen cloak or stamps of firm metrical footfalls, sweat, creaking leather and chinking metal, sweet-wine soaked figs to plain soup, bread and wine under expansive British blue skies or rain sodden dark chill. The masculine relationships between Paulinus and his subordinate friends hearkens fraternal bonds of dignity. His aloof disdain for the simple joys of the natives via architecture, attire, racial superiority, and religious ineptitude never falters, yet his intelligent perspective ever so slightly reveals his foundational fissures. His aching love for Queen Cartimandua (the only woman with dialogue?) hits at the yearning heart. The plot moves along with a pace worthy of its historical origins. Striving forward with desperately needed expansion all the while dogged by climate, agendas, and unknowns this story races along at times like a barbarians chariot then languishes with a reposing bath. The tension of pre-battle nerves is as taught as a bowstring. The combat is both urgently wet and strategically comprehensive. The stories conclusion neatly ties an Ecclesiastes like assessment for this memoir. A few words for the voice actor: his use of dialect and accent for my American ears is brilliantly distinctive for the characters as well as subtle geographically underlining. Job very well done! I’ve owned this novel in my first reading’s library discharge, in both 1960’s and 2000’s cheap paperback and then a treasured 1st edition. Now I am very glad to have this Audible publication. Thank you.

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Interesting historical novel of Roman Britain

This is an very good study of the mind of a Roman general at the height of Rome's power, as it ranged across Western Europe and the Mediterranean bringing various human groups into its empire. These men carried out the tactics perfected under Julius Caesar. They were rapacious and destructive. My sympathies were definitely with the native Britons.

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