Perfiditas (Roma Nova)
Not strictly an historical novel, Perfiditas is an alternative history adventure thriller that will delight crime fiction readers, but may also be enjoyed by Roman fans as Ms Morton has very cleverly blended into a modern tale the ‘what-might-happen’ had the Roman Empire survived to present day. Perfiditas continues the story started in the first book of this intriguing series, Inceptio, with more thrilling excitement from kick-ass Captain of Special Forces, Carina Mitela – the Special Forces being the equivalent to the Praetorian Guard.
An attempted coup threatens the matriarchal government of Roma Nova, which could destroy two millennia of achievement. Carina hopes to put matters right, but betrayal sees her becoming a fugitive, going undercover to preserve her family’s honour, and she is forced to fight her way back with her skills of courage, determination and wonderful gadgetry.
This is a fast-paced read, although I did find the opening a little difficult to get into, trying to sort out the backstory and recall the main players from book one, who they were, what they did. Reading this on Kindle I did not see the useful cast list until the end – maybe slot it in at the beginning? (Or better still, read the hardcopy book, not the e-book version!) However, the breathless plots and sub-plots soon took hold – one in particular that I did not see coming was most exciting.
The attention to detail is superb, as is the believability of this alternative history existence. It is a skilfully and intelligently written story, with first-class production and presentation: all indie books should aim for this professional standard.