We move now from modern Japan to ancient Rome--AD 70 in the late summer, to be exact. And we change from a young woman who stumbles into trying to solve a murder [Rei Shimura] to a dedicated private investigator [Marcus Didius Falco the "informer"] who will travel from the capital city of the world's most powerful Western empire of the time to the wilds of Britain, a contentious colonial province from which slaves and silver flow into the coffers of the emperor and senators of Rome, to follow a lead in a convoluted mystery.
This book gives us not only a list of the Dramatis Personae, with witty epithets for each of the major--and many of the minor--characters, AND their approximate location in the various settings of the book, but we also get maps that place us in the Roman Empire of the time with a focus on Imperial Rome and the Forum itself. I don't know about you, but I love having maps--it makes it easier for me to place the characters and the action.
For this week, read though chapter 25 where Marcus [our intrepid hero] is masquerading as a fugitive slave who has been delivered to the lead mines of Britain. How he got there is a curious story that begins with his chance meeting with Sosia Camillina: When the girl came rushing up the steps, I decided she was wearing far too many clothes. Chapter 24 ends with Marcus reminiscing about his sojourn as a slave: The foreman always called me Chirpy. I never was.
How DOES Marcus get from Imperial Rome to the lead mines of Britain? WHAT is the mystery he has been "hired" to solve, and who has hired him? What has he learned so far? WHY is he in Britain? And, better yet, WHY has Marcus gone undercover as a slave? As always, your first post should be made by Thursday night, and your second [in response to another post] should be up by midnight on Saturday.
I hope you find this novel fast-paced and enjoyable; it's another one of my favorite series [aren't they all?].
Teacher Barb :)