Ruth Downie

About me

I’m the author of six mysteries featuring Roman Army medic and reluctant sleuth, Gaius Petreius Ruso, and his British partner Tilla. In their latest adventure, TABULA RASA, Ruso is tending the builders of Hadrian’s Wall. When rumours start to spread that there’s a body buried in the Wall and a young boy disappears, the discontent of the locals threatens to erupt into violent rebellion.

I’m fascinated by the tensions that must have existed between occupiers and occupied in Roman Britain, and by the fact that although most of the characters are long forgotten, the setting still lies beneath our feet.

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

From my website

A Year of Ravens – Rebellion is stirring!

“Britannia: land of mist and magic clinging to the western edge of the Roman Empire. A red-haired queen named Boudica led her people in a desperate rebellion against the might of Rome, an epic struggle destined to consume heroes and cowards, young and old, Roman and Briton . . .…

A grand day out with the Celts

How many people can you fit on a war chariot? What did the people Caesar called “Britons” call themselves? Since you’ve finished with that character in your story, can I kill him in mine? These are the kind of questions that  have been bandied about over the summer by the…

Another skeleton!

Basking in reflected glory here, because some of my former comrades from the site at Whitehall Roman Villa have made a wonderful find: the skeleton of a man who died in about the 5th century, and the remains of the shield that was buried with him. There’s video footage and…

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