Gere: Historical Mystery
Rome, 61 AD
First Sentence: I set foot on Italy once more on a filthy day in December.
This novel is the fifth in Roberts' SPQR series which currently runs to fourteen books.
Our main character, Decius, has been recalled to Rome. One of his male relatives has been murdered. Rumors around Rome say that the murdered man has been poisoned, probably by his wife who is widely known as a scandalous woman.
Rome is not a safe place for Decius. Two separate factions have threatened Decius about the case. One group will kill Decius if he finds her guilty, the other will kill him if he finds her innocent.
Aided by his fiancee, and his loyal(?) boy servant Hermes, Decius searches to uncover the truth. Along the way he encounters ruffians, aristocrats, slaves, witches, and a strange religious cult.
It seems that every time he gets close to the truth, Decius finds another body. Someone is doing a good job of covering his tracks.
Will Decius untangle the mystery to discover who is actually the culprit?
This was a enjoyable book. Roberts uses an easy to read style to paint a realistic portrait of ancient Rome.
In the end we get a great historical fiction novel, with a tangled mystery to solve.