A Roman Death

Joan O’Hagan. Black Quill, $18.95 trade paper (256p) ISBN 978-0-6480-0200-0
First published in 1988, this welcome reissue from O’Hagan (Jerome and His Women) cleverly uses the tensions preceding and following Julius Caesar’s assassination as the backdrop for a murder mystery. Lucius Scaurus, who “served under Scipio in the African war against Caesar,” has returned to Rome, where his magistrate father, Marcus, who’s in financial difficulties, has arranged his betrothal to 14-year-old Fufidia. Fufidia’s father, Quintus, is affluent, and her mother, Helvia, is the sister of the poet Cinna. Misgivings about the match don’t end with Lucius and Fufidia’s engagement, which is followed by a poisoning at a pre-wedding banquet at her family’s home that leads to accusations of murder against one of her parents . O’Hagan is especially adept at making the trial scenes vivid, with the legendary orator Cicero speaking for the defense. Steven Saylor fans won’t want to miss this one. (Self-published.)
Reviewed on : 10/04/2019
Release date: 10/01/2017
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Open Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-648-00201-7
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