Most historical novels set in the ancient world involve bright sunshine and Mediterranean warmth; Richard Blake begins this one in the frigid cold of an Alpine pass. There’s a plot to flood Italy with the nastiest barbarians who ever invaded. Only young Rodi and his thoroughly vicious and corrupt “friend”, Prince Aripert of the Lombards can stop them.
The second half of the novel is set in the ice-cold ruins of Rome, where a flesh-rotting plague has returned to life.
I think I preferred “Game of Empires”, Blake’s first in this series. I know that preferred “The Devil’s Treasure”, his most recent in this series. However, this is up to Blake’s usual standard of brilliant writing, convincing characterisation, and devious plotting.
Review published on Amazon on the 25th February 2018
© 2018, richardblake.
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