ARMS OF NEMESIS by Steven Saylor
CATEGORY: HISTORICAL MYSTERY
(in the Gordianus the Finder series, same as ROMAN BLOOD)
Although I'm still partial to Lindsey Davis' superb "Falco" series, I'm deep into a "Gordianus the Finder" fix right now. This novel, Saylor's second (I believe) is quite good.. not as good as Roman Blood, I think, but very deftly written. A patrician is murdered at his villa. Two runaway slaves are suspected. Gordianus is called in to prevent the entire household staff from being ritualistically slaughtered (the story takes place during the Spartican revolts (depicted in the movie, Spartacus) so Roman estate owners are a tad sensitive about the slave population). There are fewer blatant surprises in ARMS than there were in BLOOD, yet it's still a very engaging (and oftimes funny) read. Naturally, there's a huge scandal behind it all; I would be surprised if there wasn't one in Saylor's plots. I rather liked the settings and characters, most of which are historical. In summary, not much better or worse than Roman Blood, and quite enjoyable.
Posted by mrnizz
at 10:28 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, 26 September 2003 10:32 AM EDT