"May Steven Saylor's Roman empire never fall. A modern master of historical fiction, Saylor convincingly transports us into the ancient world...enthralling!" —USA Today on Roma
Continuing the saga begun in his New York Times bestselling novel Roma, Steven Saylor charts the destinies of the aristocratic Pinarius family, from the reign of Augustus to height of Rome's empire. The Pinarii, generation after generation, are witness to greatest empire in the ancient world and of the emperors that ruled it—from the machinations of Tiberius and the madness of Caligula, to the decadence of Nero and the golden age of Trajan and Hadrian and more.
Empire is filled with the dramatic, defining moments of the age, including the Great Fire, the persecution of the Christians, and the astounding opening games of the Colosseum. But at the novel's heart are the choices and temptations faced by each generation of the Pinarii.
Steven Saylor once again brings the ancient world to vivid life in a novel that tells the story of a city and a people that has endured in the world's imagination like no other.
Saylor, well known for his Roma Sub Rosa historical mysteries, switched gears for his bestselling Roma and now continues the history of ancient Rome from A.D. 14 to 141 with a hefty tome of the Pinarius family as its members serve a succession of Roman emperors as soothsayers, senators, and artisans, while trying not to get killed in the slew of conspiracies that marked the Roman political scene. The patriarch, Lucius Pinarius, grooms his son, also named Lucius, to be a member of an ancient priesthood of soothsayers who interpret natural phenomenon to divine the future. Young Lucius is particularly skillful, earning the emperor's praise and confidence. Succeeding generations of Pinariuses will enjoy the favor of Trajan and Hadrian, but will suffer from the cruelty of Tiberius, the madness of Caligula, the depravity of Nero, and the murderous paranoia of Domitian. Saylor also vividly describes how the family survives the volcanic destruction of Pompeii, the burning of Rome, and the persecution of Jews and Christians. Though the ending is disappointingly abrupt, it does signal another volume to come in this grand series.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Saylor's Empire; A Family History
Following a family through generations in a historical context seems a challenge most authors fail to really get. Saylor "gets" it by not only bringing to life these individuals, but within the context of historical research & reporting, he makes the boring & uninteresting family members a fascinating story! I was particularly fascinated with the reporting of the traditional "upper class" wedding ceremony & depictions of Gladiatorial games! A good read & interesting throughout the work! If you haven't read any of his Gordanious The Finder series, I highly recommend them! Saylor's ease in bringing history to life is unmatched!
Excellent story telling of History
History of the Early Roman Emperors has been very lucidly portrayed. Most of the details have kept in the story. It is an excellent read and almost a page turner.
What a Terrific Book!
A friend introduced me to the writings of Steven Saylor about 6 months ago - I simply can't get enough. Empire is exactly what I had hoped it would be, and I found myself truly sorry I had come to the end. I chose to read Empire first (prior to Roma), as I was in the mood to feel present during the reign of Hadrian. Steven doesn't disappoint in bringing all the emperors to life, and besides being a top notch historian he just knows how to tell a terrific tale. If you enjoy being a part of Roman history's greatest moments, then I highly recommend you read Empire (and don't stop there - Gordianus the Finder awaits you in other novels!) I purchased this book as a download, but very quickly realized I want the hardback in my library. And, Steven, if you ever happen to read this - I will never again be able to look at a statue or bust of Antinous without thinking of Marcus Pinarus hovering somewhere in the background. Thank you - what a great book!
Now... back to Gordianus. I have some catching up to do.