Ruth Downie

About me

I’m the author of seven mysteries featuring Roman Army medic and reluctant sleuth, Gaius Petreius Ruso, and his British partner Tilla. In their latest adventure, VITA BREVIS, Ruso and Tilla head to Rome. They soon discover that the grand facades of polished marble mask an underworld of corrupt landlords and vermin-infested tenements. There are also far too many doctors – some skilled, but others positively dangerous.

I’m fascinated by the tensions that must have existed between Roman and Briton during the occupation, and how those tensions must have played out in the lives of ordinary people now long forgotten.

When not writing or researching the Ruso novels, my happiest moments are spent wielding an archaeological trowel.

From my website

Things that go slop in the night: a Samain warning before bedtime.

Never mind the pumpkins and the witches’ hats: here’s a timely tale borrowed from our Irish neighbours. It wasn’t written down until about 900 years ago but may be much older. Unless a miracle happens, this sort of thing is the nearest we’re ever likely to get to the kind…

Jersey – plus ça change…

i’ve just been enjoying a few days in Jersey, an island which turns out to have hung onto some fine traditions of the past: 1. Stashing cash: The biggest hoard of Celtic coins in the world was found in Jersey in 2012 – and that’s the ninth hoard from the…

Never work with children or animals.

VITA BREVIS finally makes it into paperback in the UK today (hooray!) so it seems right to mark the occasion. I can hardly have a launch party for a book that’s been out in hardback and ebook for some time now, but on the other hand, unless people know it’s…

 
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