Caesar's Women

Caesar's Women

Book - 1996
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Baker & Taylor
The author of The Thorn Birds presents the fourth novel in the Masters of Rome series, focusing on the women in the life of the Roman emperor Gaius Julius Caesar at the height of his power. 100,000 first printing. Tour.

Blackwell North Amer
Caesar's Women is the story of Gaius Julius Caesar's rise to prominence in his world, beginning with his return to Rome in 68 B.C. as he prepares to dominate a new battlefield - the Roman Forum. The wars he fights within it are waged with words, plots, schemes, and metaphorical assassination. Today's ally may be tomorrow's foe; everything shifts and changes within this political arena.
Caesar's victories are not limited to the Forum, however. Penned inside Rome for these memorable ten years, Caesar also conquers Rome's noblewomen. Yet the one thing he never gives to any of the women who love him or want him is himself. To Caesar, love is just another weapon in his political arsenal. He is as willing to sacrifice his daughter on the altar of his ambition as he is ready to seize other means of moving toward his ultimate goal - to be the greatest of all Rome's First Men.
Was he villain, or was he hero? That argument is still being debated today, for Caesar has never ceased to fascinate the passing generations. Caesar's Women reveals the man behind the legend, and displays a world that, despite its alien trappings echoes our own too closely for comfort.

& Taylor

The fourth novel of the Masters of Rome series focuses on the women in the life of the Roman emperor Gaius Julius Caesar at the height of his power

Publisher: New York : W. Morrow, 1996
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780688093716
Branch Call Number: MCC
Characteristics: 696 p


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May 22, 2017

I can't believe they don't have a hard copy of this!
I'm tacking this review onto all of the books in McCullough's Masters of Rome series:

I'm interested, in a layman's way, in the history of Rome, so this entire series (books listed below) was riveting for me.

Masters of Rome series:
1. The First Man in Rome (1990) - The narrative begins in 110 B.C. with the story of Gaius Marius.
2. The Grass Crown (1991)
3. Fortune's Favourites (1993)
4. Caesar's Women (1995)
5. Caesar (1999)
6. The October Horse (2002) - Originally intended to be the final book of the series, the narrative carries us through Julius Caesar's death on the Ides of March in 44 B.C., and ends after The Battle of Philippi in 42 B.C., the final battle in the Wars of the Second Triumvirate between the forces of Mark Antony and Octavian (Caesar's great-nephew, and adopted son) and the forces of the tyrannicides Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus.
7. Antony and Cleopatra (2007) - Somehow McCullough was persuaded to add one more book to the series, tying up loose ends, perhaps? Or maybe it was just hard for her to imagine life without The Masters of Rome? I had secretly hoped she'd carry on further into the reign of Augustus.

Julius Caesar appears in each of the first six books. If you're interested in popularized Roman history, this is a treasure. The writing is good, if not quite up to the standard of Robert Graves two volume set "I, Claudius," and "Claudius the God," or Robert Harris' Cicero trilogy. If you have read and enjoyed any of these, however, you MUST read them all - in chronological order, of course. It is particularly interesting that McCullough seems more or less in the Caesar-worshipping camp. He was a prodigy; he was too good at too many things, which in the end had a lot to do with his downfall. But what a magnificent creature he was!

However, Cicero was Caesar's mortal enemy, and Robert Harris' books tell much of the same story as we find in McCullough - from a diametrically opposed point of view.

Be forewarned, these books are packed with lengthy Roman names, so will in some ways read like Russian novels. Hard to keep track of the cast of characters without a program, which the author naturally provides, along with detailed hand-drawn maps, and her own line-drawing fanciful portraits of the principle characters. Not very good drawings, but somehow rather endearing. She was quite a character herself.

P.S. It gets easier to keep the characters straight on the third and fourth readings. Yes, the books are that good ………

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