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Shadows In Bronze


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The much loved, bestselling Falco series is repackaged in stunning new jacket design

About the Author

Lindsey Davis has written over twenty historical novels, beginning with The Course of Honour. Her bestselling mystery series features laid-back First Century detective Marcus Didius Falco and his partner Helena Justina, plus friends, relations, pets and bitter enemy the Chief Spy. After an English degree at Oxford University Lindsey joined the Civil Service, but became a professional author in 1989. Her books are translated into many languages and have been dramatized on BBC Radio 4. Her many prizes include the Premio Colosseo, awarded by the Mayor of Rome 'for enhancing the image of Rome', the Sherlock award for Falco as Best Comic Detective and the Crimewriters' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. For more information, please visit


No caveats for readers of Davis's second playful, well-plotted mystery featuring imperial agent Marcus Didius Falco and based in first century, C.E., Rome. Nero's successor Vespasian has squelched an early treasonous plot and assigned Falco to take care of loose ends, which include the body of the uncle of the high-born young widow Helena Justina, whom Falco met and courted stormily in Silver Pigs. Disguised as an idle vacationer in the company of his comrade and captain of the Aventine Watch, Petronius Longus and family, Falco travels south to Neapolis, Capreae and Pompeii (eight years before its destruction) where he uncovers and must thwart a new conspiracy involving the shipment of Egyptian grain to Rome and an unwitting Helena. Like a toga-clad McGee or Spenser, Falco has a modern sensibility that wears its ancient trappings comfortably, whether he's sneaking down a narrow Roman street or feasting sumptuously at a sunlit coastal villa. A rousing horserace in the Circus Maximus, balanced with a touching romantic resolution, rounds out this action-packed entertainment, enlivened by Davis's vivid characterization of both major and minor players, and his clear delight in--and easy authority with--the story's time and place. (Mar.)

One of the best of the current writers in this field * Donna Leon, The Times *
Surely the best historical detective in the business * Mike Ripley, Daily Telegraph *
A tumultuous Ancient Rome with a delightful modern eye * Sunday Times *

Falco, an imperial agent for the Emperor Vespasian in 1st century Rome, has an eye for pretty women but a heart that belongs only to Helena, daughter of Senator Verus. Because of Falco's humble origins the lady is quite out of his league; still the attraction is mutual. This is the author's second novel with Falco as hero (the first was Silver Pigs, LJ 9/1/89). Here the Emperor asks him to track down treasonous plotters still smarting from Vespasian's usurpation of the throne. The real beauty of this novel lies in its well-etched characters including wayward senators; rascally friends of Falco; and troubled members of his family. In addition, Davis gives us the wonderful wit of narrator Falco and a de lightful evocation of ancient Rome's sights, sounds, and smells.-- Patricia Altner, Dept. of Defense Lib., Bolling Air Force Base, Washington, D.C.

YA-- That rascally Roman detective, Marcus Didius Falco, is back, still pining for the unavailable, upper-class Helen; bumbling through investigations; and dodging his nagging mother. Set in Italy in a.d. 70, the mystery of Helen's ``returned-to-life'' husband flows smoothly, accompanied by such historical details as descriptions of prostitutes flourishing in Pompeii, salesmen hawking used chariots, and women dying their hair with the newest shade--Egyptian Russet. It's great fun to read of Falco's dubious detecting skills, aided by his sharp eye for noticing and reporting on the world around him. A book that should be required reading for those students who foolishly believe the adage ``Latin is a dead language.''-- Pam Spencer, Jefferson Sci-Tech, Alexandria, VA

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