Hero of Rome
September AD 59. In order to obtain the necessary military experience to make a career in politics, Tribune Gaius Valerius Verrens has a place on the staff of Marcus Livinius Drusus. Although only a temporary attachment, Gaius finds that he has a liking and aptitude for military life, and he hopes to become involved in the forthcoming campaign being organised by Paulinus, the Governor of Roman Britain, against the Druids. However, his hopes are dashed when he is sent to Colonia (Camulodunum) in the winter to oversee necessary road and building maintenance. Gwylm, a druid, is sent by Aymer the Druid High Priest to encourage and prepare the tribes for rebellion against the Roman invader. The assault on Boudicca and the rape of her daughters provides the spark, and the combined British tribes march on Colonia, where Drusus and a small band of regular soldiers backed up two thousand retired veterans must face their fury.
This is the first in a trilogy featuring Valerius Verrens. The characters, both Roman and British, are well drawn; descriptions are clear and concise giving the reader a credible picture of what life must have been like in Roman Britain. The battle scenes are superb, exciting and nail biting. I haven’t read Douglas Jackson’s previous offerings, but I certainly will now. If you like Simon Scarrow’s Roman novels, you will like this. Recommended.