This is my review of the book Emperor – The Gods of War by Conn Iggulden which I read recently. Well back to historical novels in my book list. Amazingly I have power, an internet connection and am writing this to add it actually on the correct day. Lets hope it carries on so I can get it added. Though I still have five books to add from my backlog that accrued during my travels which I am adding slowly.
So this is the continuing biography of Julius Caesar and book four in the Emperor series. I found it interesting as I read this book that it swerved from the history I thought I knew about Julius. The book paints him as essentially a good man trying to right the wrongs of greed, money and power that Pompey was showing.
Julius is called back to Roman from Gaul. Fresh from triumph in Britain and Gaul, Julius marches on Rome with his legions of hardened veterans. Pompey needs to be unseated. Will this mean a civil war. Pompey makes the decision for him in fleeing from Rome. So Julius has to chase him across the Mediterranean, eventually ending up in Egypt.
Here he meets Cleopatra and that is a story in itself. Sadly running parallel to this is the ongoing tensions between Julius, Brutus, Mark Antony and Octavian. Julius tries to upset the apple cart and has to pay the consequences..
A very enjoyable and interesting book, giving a very different perspective on a story that I thought I knew very well.
I will record this as book 25 week 22 fiction 23 (audio books 4) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book A Time to Kill by John Grisham which I read recently. I seem to be reading a lot of historical fiction recently so this made a pleasant change in that it was set within the last 30 years. It is a story all about the tensions in the south of of America between black and white, right and wrong, truth and lies.
Sadly Carl Lee Hailey's 10 year old daughter is raped and nearly killed by a couple of drunk rednecks. Carl then proceeds to execute the two hoodlums for their crimes. He is then arrested and charged with murder. If found guilty then he will face the gas chamber.
The exciting tale is mainly about the lead up to and the ensuing court case. Jake Brigance is hired to defend Carl, but as it is such a high profile case other lawyers want to get in on the act and take it away from him, as whatever the outcome it will be a most famous case.
Will the trial be a fair one – Certainly if the Klu Klux Klan have anything to do with it they will try their up most to prevent Carl from being let off.
Tensions get so bad that the National Guard is called in to stop riots and to try to defend and protect the key players, but things don't go to plan, especially when the KKK decide to turn up the heat.
The book is a real page turner and having read other books by John Grisham I know that it is not possible to take the outcome for granted. He does allow his characters to face the death sentence. This was an enjoyable page turning book and I will record this as book 24 week 22 fiction 22 (audio books 4) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book Emperor – The fields of swords by Conn Iggulden which I read recently. This is the third book in the series about the life and times of Julius Caesar.
When we were the other side of the world it did not seem that strange that we had internet connection problems but back at home we are brought back to reality of living in rural Scotland, as we had a power cut for five hours. Of course this means no central heating, mains light or internet. As were were first told it would only be a short time we did not bother to get the generator going, but we were very pleased that we have a gas hob for cooking and a wood burner for heat and lots of candles. Our friends who live in more urban areas find it hard to believe the number of power cuts we get.
Still this is nothing to the life that the Romans lived, and our biography of Julius Caesar now moves to his Gallic campaigns. Julius has taken his legions north to battle the Gallic tribes. But as his successes mount, overwhelming ambition and new alliances begin to threaten his one true friendship, with Brutus.
Marcus Brutus was instrumental in the conquest of Gaul and so in restoring Caesar’s reputation as a hero of Rome, but slowly the cracks in the friendship start to appear, as Julius wants to restore the old ways of Roman, but wealth ambition and family ties all get in the way.
I will record this as book 23 week 21 fiction 21 (audio books 4) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book Lord Tony's Wife by Baroness Orczy which I have listened to recently as a librivox recording, https://librivox.org/lord-tonys-wife-by-baroness-emmuska-orczy/ l whilst driving around. This story publish in 1917 is the continued story of the Scarlet Pimpernel series. It is a story full of suspense, double crossing and drama.
The story is in three parts firstly an initial tragedy that sets up the story, the second part is all about Yvonne and Lord Tony eloping. Then the year moves to 1793 and in Nantes, France, the hunting of aristocrats goes on. The Yvonnes father kidnaps her under false pretences. They think they are going to The Netherlands but end up going to France, where Chauvelin is waiting.
The final section is how Lord Tony persuades his friend The Scarlet Pimpernel to assist him in trying to free Yvonne and her father, from Chauvelin and Pierre Adet. Will Lord Tony ever even see his wife again?
This book is an exciting, romance of the French revolution. If I had read it rather than listened to it then I would have classified it as a page turner. Certainly it kept my attention whilst travelling up and down the motorway. All good fun.
I will record this as book 22 week 21 fiction 20 (audio books 4) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book Emperor – The death of kings by Conn Iggulden which I read recently. This is the second book in the series of four about the life and times of Julius Caesar. As a young officer in the army he is serving on board a war galley. The ship is captured by pirates is captured and he is abandoned on the North African coast. The families are asked for a ransom to get them back, which they pay. Julius vows to get revenge and the money back so he gathers a legion of men powerful enough to gain vengeance on his captors and to suppress an uprising in Greece, he returns to Rome a hero.
At the moment of his triumph, Julius finds he must fight again. A savage rebellion threatens the city, led by a gladiator named Spartacus…
This was a good page turner of a book and really wet my appetite for the next book in the series, which I will hopefully read soon. I will record this as book 21 week 21 fiction 19 (audio books 3) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book 48 Hours by J Jackson Bentley which I read recently. This was the first book I read on a Kindle. I found it very strange not having pages to turn but soon got used to it. It certainly makes it easy to read.
The star of the book is Josh Hammond and he receives a text on his Blackberry that he will have to pay a £250,000 ransom within 48 hours or be killed. Firstly he thinks it is a joke, but when people he knows starts dying he knows that the blackmailer is serious. He gets a beautiful bodyguard and then sets about raising the money and trying to find who is doing the blackmailing.
With the time deadline and death as the ultimate inspiration this book has all the ingredients of being a real page turner and it is, all be it in my case flipping the screen. It is an exciting plausible book that whizzed along. The London background as a setting was believable as well, making it an enjoyable read. Though I have never read any of J Jacksons books before I will look out for them in the future.
I will record this as book 20 week 21 fiction 18 (audio books 3) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book Emperor – The Gates of Rome by Conn Iggulden, which I read recently. This book is the first of a series of books on the life and times of Julius Caesar. This book deals with his early years.
At school I studied Roman history which included this time, and I have been to see Shakespeare's play about Julius. In both cases the person presented as Julius was very different to that of the one presented by Conn Iggulden. I know with time our views of history change but I did find this perspective very interesting. The story is full of all the staples of a Roman tale, gladiatorial combat, power struggles, betrayal and civil war with citizen fighting citizen.
All the ground marks required by to give Julius the perfect start in life to enable him to become one of the greatest Romans of all.
This is book one of a series and I will hopefully be reading the rest soon. I will record this as book 19 week 21 fiction 17 (audio books 3) non fiction 2
The observant will have noticed that there has been a gap in my blog entries for a few weeks. This has been due to travelling the other side of the world and the related problems of getting a reliable internet connection that would work with weebly allowing me to update my blog. Then have got back to the uk there is of course the mountain of tasks that need to be done and writing blog articles I am afraid drops down the list but I will try to catch up with my book reviews before writing about other things,
This is my brief review of the book The Innocence of Father Brown by G K Chesterton. The book is really just a collection of short stories, that were published in various magazines, each one is a story unto themselves. The hero of the stories is the “little” priest Father Brown, and how he solves or prevents crimes. In most cases it is the small things that he notices or does that traps the criminal. For example puts salt in the sugar bowl and if there is not a complaint then the person who has just taken the salt thinking it was sugar is up to no good.
The stories also contain several famous quotes within them – one that appealed to me was -
“Humility is the mother of giants. One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak.” ―G.K. Chesterton, he Innocence of Father Brown
The book contains the following short stories:-
I will record this as book 18 week 21 fiction 16 (audio books 3) non fiction 2
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.