The long-awaited final volume of the Cicero Trilogy, from a beloved bestselling author “incapable of writing an unenjoyable book” (The Wall Street Journal).
At the age of forty-eight, Cicero—the greatest orator of his time—is in exile, his power sacrificed on the altar of his principles. The only way to return to Rome is to pledge his support to a charismatic and dangerous enemy: Julius Caesar. Harnessing his political cunning, unrivalled intellect, and the sheer brilliance of his words, Cicero fights his way back to prominence. Yet no public figure is completely safeguarded against the unscrupulous ambition of others.
Riveting and tumultuous, Dictator encompasses the most epic events in ancient history, including the collapse of the Roman Republic, the murder of Pompey, and the assassination of Caesar. But its central question is a timeless one: how to keep political freedom unsullied by personal gain, vested interests, and the corrosive effects of ceaseless foreign wars. In Robert Harris’s indelible portrait, Cicero is a deeply fascinating hero for his own time and for ours.
The closing volume of British bestseller Harris's Ancient Rome trilogy, following Imperium and Conspirata, is as skillful as it is sobering. In 58 B.C.E., Cicero, the brilliant 49-year-old author and orator who was Rome's undisputed leader only five years before, is punished with exile for his principled resistance to the triumvirate that now controls Rome. Making a reluctant peace with the trio most notably Julius Caesar allows him to return to Rome and his family, but even his political genius cannot return the republic to stability. The triumvirate collapses, civil war ensues, and Caesar seizes power, declaring himself dictator and god. Cicero lauds Caesar's assassination as an act of liberation; though he is swept back into power afterward, he can neither restore the Roman government he views as "mankind's noblest creation" nor save himself from betrayal. The perfect foil to the passionate and sometimes paradoxical protagonist, Cicero's quietly capable secretary Tiro (a slave Cicero frees in one of the book's most poignant scenes) remains an appealing narrator, offering readers a shrewd and stable perspective on the tumult Cicero embraces. With its complex historical context and searing scenes of violence, Dictator is not easy reading. Yet its gripping dramas and powerful themes the fragility of democracy and the fallibility of human beings among them richly illuminate the conflicts of its era and our own. 100,000-copy first printing.
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The best historical fiction of Ancient Rome
I have read many historical fictional works and Harris’s Cicero trilogy is the best written by far. Really an excellent series!
Robert Harris Does It Again
This was an excellent book he brings the life and Times of Cicero to life in a way that is beyond entertaining, it is fascinating. I certainly hope that in the future he takes up more historical fiction. I waited for this book for a long time, and it did not disappoint.