Vengeance: Empire XII
After saving the Empire's richest province from a foreign army, Marcus and the men who protect him have been in hiding. Their lives will be forfeit if they are seen in Rome.
But times have changed. Marcus's protector, the patrician legion commander Scaurus, has been summoned home by his mentor, a powerful senator who has decided he must act to save the empire from its debauched ruler's reign of terror.
Rome is a hotbed of conspiracy and treachery: and the senator is not the only contender for power. The emperor himself plans to destroy those he mistrusts and no-one is safe.
Marcus is assigned his own, unique role in the conspiracy. He will become a gladiator once more. But this time, his only opponent will be Commodus himself . . .
Simply the best of them all.
I just want to start by saying I’m not one for writing reviews. I don’t necessarily find myself articulate enough to get across my thoughts. But hey, let’s give it a go.
Now my title might suggests that this book is the best of the series. It can easily be argued. However, for me, this book, as well as the 'Empire' series, is by far the most gripping, gritty and hilarious (the Sanga and Saratos adventures deserve a special mention) of all the I guess you’d call the 'Roman solider' genre for a lack of a better term.
The detail in which these books describe the encounters of Scarus, Marcus and the rest of the familia makes me feel part of them, as if I’m there to see each facial expression and the emotions in which each character displays when feeling them. This really helps me connect with the impact of the words. The introduction of Lupus as more mature, calculated and, quite frankly, shaping up to be the most fearsome of all the warrior characters. This, as well as the entire encounter in the prologue, epitomises what I love about the Empire series.
I want to give special mention to the ‘Eagle of the Empire’ series as this was my gateway into the genre, but for the reasons as previously mentioned, it has now fallen to a solid second place.
Ultimately, I’ve written this review for anyone who, like me, is a massive fan of this genre of books and, like me, wish it to be as realistic as possible and not hold back on the reality that this was a tough and turbulent time for soldiers and civilians alike.
I’ll finish this by saying Anthony Riches a massive thank you for giving us some fantastic reading and, with the new book coming out and the coming of a new period of Roman history, a prospect to look forward to too! I hope the Tungrians continue to play a part *worries about the battle of Lugdunum*
P.S, the ‘Centurion’ series is a must read if you enjoy these books.