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Last Seen in Massilia (Roma Sub Rosa #8)

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  1,685 ratings  ·  60 reviews
In this mystery set in Marseilles in 49 B.C., master detective Gordianus the Finder is on a personal quest to learn the truth about his missing son, Meto. Plunged into the midst of the bloody Roman civil war, the well-connected Gordianus and his son-in-law Davus survive adventure after adventure as they penetrate the Gaulic city Massilia, which is walled against Roman inva ...more
Paperback, 300 pages
Published 2001 by Robinson (first published October 1st 2000)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,459)
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Inês Beato
Mais uma grande aventura de Gordiano, o Descobridor! Desta feita, Roma foi totalmente deixada de lado e a acção decorre do princípio ao fim na cidade de Massília (atual Marselha). Como tal, nesta obra não se encontram algumas das personagens já habituais, como Betesda, Diana, Cícero ou Eco.
Esta aventura tem início no ponto onde a anterior terminou e Gordiano vê-se obrigado a partir para Massília com Davus, em busca do seu filho Meto, após ter recebido uma carta que o dava como morto.
O descobri
Georgina Ortiz
Last Seen in Massilia, like the other books in the Roma Sub-Rosa series, is like a bag of Kirkland's fruits and nuts--you can't just stop devouring it (the sweetness of the fruits--eaten alternately with the salty nuts--is extremely addicting).

Learned a lot about ancient Massilia (modern-day Marseilles in France) and its people:
1) "Without wealth, a man in Massilia is nothing" (p.83)
2) "Massilians were said to love money above all else and to exemplify the concomitant virtues--diligence, shrewdn
I think this was more of a 3.5 star book. I enjoyed it and flew through the story, but it seemed to take its time to get going with a strong plot, and I wasn't overly interested in (what I considered to be) a rather simplistic mystery at the sacrifice rock. However, I think it was an extremely interesting historical setting, I loved reading about Massilia, and I'm sure this story is integral to the later books. Not a disappointment at all, but not as interesting as some of the earlier books in t ...more
So close to five stars! This series is rapidly reaching a climax and that climax is Cesar. The realization the end is coming makes me a little sad.

I stormed through this novel. It wasn't as action packed as some of the previous novels but the story was so much more gripping than any of the previous novels. I was a little shocked at the end (view spoiler)
Alison C
In Last Seen in Massilia , the eighth book in the Sub Roma series by Steven Saylor, our hero Gordianus the Finder has traveled with his strong son-in-law Davus to Massilia (present-day Marseille) because he's received a note telling him that his son Meto died there and, being the Finder that he is, he has to learn the truth. As he arrives in Massilia, the place is under seige by Caesar's Roman forces because the city-state had refused him entry some time earlier and instead thrown in their lo ...more
This is the first one of the series that I have read. It is a great historical mystery in a time and place not often written about. Set in Massilia (now Marseilles) during the Roman Empire, it is a fascinating look into an ancient culture. Wonderful combination of mystery and history.
Matthew Perry
I do not want to give this away but this book was a huge installment in this series because of the changes that take place in his family. With the family changes that this book has it is a must read of course for the fans of the series but my favorite thing about this book was that it had my favorite mystery for Gordianus to solve so far. He is charged with trying to find his son Meto in Masillia a besieged town in present day France. While he is there is meets a doomed scapegoat and whitnesses ...more
Kathy Davie
Seventh in the Roma Sub Rosa historical mystery series and revolving around Gordianus the Finder and his family in the Rome of 49 BC.

Chronologically, it's MY seventh and Saylor's eighth because the technical sixth, The House of the Vestals , is a collection of short stories that I've slotted in chronologically on my website.

My Take
Last Seen in Massilia is not as tense or dramatic as it could have been. It's definitely an easy read that won't make your heart race. I'm not really sure why Saylor
I have read some of these before and missed this one previously. His "disowning" his adopted some came as quite a surprise to me! I guess I will have to read further now......

[close:] In this mystery set in Marseilles in 49 B.C., master detective Gordianus the Finder is on a personal quest to learn the truth about his missing son, Meto. Plunged into the midst of the bloody Roman civil war, the well-connected Gordianus and his son-in-law Davus survive adventure after adventure as they penetrate t
May 11, 2013 Lianne added it
The civil war in the territories continues in #8 of the Steven Saylor series about ancient Rome. It's 49 B.C. and Gordianus the Finder has received an anonymous message from the city of Massilia (Marseille) declaring that his son Meto is dead. Is Meto a double agent for Caesar? Massillia has declared iloyalty to Pompei Caesar's rival. Gordianus does not trust the news and resolves to find out the truth about his son's life. He sets out with his son-in-law Davus as bodyguard and companion. Togeth ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 05, 2013 Eli rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: rome
This was a very well written and entertaining read. I am quite a fan of historical fiction, and Steven Saylor does a convincing job of recreating the world of the ancient Mediterranean as we know it, while adding in his little fictional side-show, playing along simultaneously with the real historical events, yet without conflict between the two. His characters are not prominent enough figures to pose any real problems in this regard, at least in this book.

That is one element of this era that wo
Last Seen in Massilia is a book that would not normally be on my radar, but I was pleasantly surprised. Most of the historical fiction novels I read are centered around strong female characters. Last Seen in Massilia takes place in what would be Marseille, France today but it is called Massilia in ancient Rome. It centers around a Roman Citizen, Gordianus the Finder who is also a detective. Gordianus receives word from an anonymous source in Massilia that his son may be dead, so he travels there ...more
Kim Headlee
Hemmed inside the walls of ancient, Greek-controlled Marseilles, Pompey's sympathizers besieging your loyalties even as Julius Caesar's legions blockade all access by land or sea, what would you expect to find? Starvation and hysteria, certainly, as well as suspicion and political intrigue in abundance. But if you happen to be Gordianus the Finder, renowned sleuth of the Roman Empire, murder finds you.

In 49 B.C., civil war embroiled Rome's vast empire. Caesar crossed the Rubicon to assert his re
V.P. Chandler
The first book of Saylor's that I read was A Twist at the End. I was so impressed, I decided to read this one.
I was not dissapointed. Saylor is a master at balancing mystery, intrigue, history, and setting. I learned so much about the place and time without getting bogged down in extraneous details.
I will definitely be reading all of his books! He is quickly becoming one of my favorites.
John Devlin
After a great book 7, Saylor stays on a roll. My only complaint w/these novels is that the characters are too kind hearted and a little too 21st century in their ideas on individual liberties. Similarly, Gordianus has managed to avoid some of the stickier moral issues that would result from a man living in a place like Rome in such a morally barren time. After effectively dealing w/my concerns in book 7, "Last Seen" delivers a surprisingly good mystery with a personal coda that disturbs for all ...more
Another entertaining read by Steven Saylor. He does an excellent job of keeping the history and the commonly known historical characters in the background. His fictional characters are the subject matter of the story and Saylor continues to develop them, introducing new aspects to their personalities while staying true to the nature he has previously shown. This was a welcome addition to the series.
Elizabeth Theiss
First a confession: I am a Rome geek. I will read almost anything, fact or fiction, about life or people in Rome or its colonies. Last Seen in Massilia is part of an outstanding series written by a classics scholar, so the books get the details right from what's for dinner to the actions in battles seen from afar. Saylor's fictional characters have conversations with historical characters from the famous (like Caesar) to the not so famous (the roman architect Vetruvius).

In this book, Gordianus
Shawn Thrasher
You have to say one thing for Steven Saylor, his historical accuracy seems pretty spot on. You always feel like you are in ancient Rome, battling with Caesar. Occasionally it feels like the mystery itself is overshadowed by the bigger historical picture (which isn't necessarily a bad thing with writing and research as good as Saylor's), in this particular case the siege of Massilia (modern Marseillais) by Caesar's forces. But I have to say, just when I sort of thought "What a third rate mystery, ...more
Mary Newcomb
Gordianus the Finder and his son in law Davus are in Massilia (modern day Marseilles) to find out what happened to his son Meto. They arrive in the midst of a siege and make unexpected discoveries. The end was a bit confusing to me, perhaps it will make sense in another book or two.
Charlie Moses
Love this series. This is the best of the three mystery/detective series set in the Roman Empire. Its character lives during the time period that saw the ending of the Roman republic and the empire under Caesar and brings that world to life.
Hated the ending but enjoyed the book. Shorter than most entries in this series but action packed. Picks up months after Rubicon and follows Gordianus and Davus in search of Meto in more ways than one. The veiled figures were pretty easy to identify right off but that was not the point in this book, it was more a psychological unveiling that drove the book.
Steven Saylor developed a passion for all things "Roman" as an adolescent. He's spent years reading and researching everything he could find on this time period and writes stories based on historical events and characters. He doesn't sugar-coat the past nor does he write under the influence of any religious dogma. If you're easily offended by depictions of gladiatorial games, bloodshed, and sexual attractions and situations, do NOT read this series. If however, you're an adult who accepts that a ...more
I have now read a Gordianus from the start of his career and this one from his elder years. I was not really drawn in to the first book and wish I could say that the experience here was better. I did not particularly like the reader's voice on this audio but after a while he grew on me more. If I was more familiar with G's backstory I might have felt more involved here in the family drama and even some of the political involvements. A good job of presenting the setting so it was easy to visualiz ...more
I am completely and hopelessly addicted to Steven Saylor's Roma Sub Rosa novels. Last Seen in Massilia was pretty poignant to be reading on Father's Day for reasons I won't write about here to avoid spoilers that might give away too much of the plot to folks who have not read but want to read Last Seen in Massilia.

My mind is creating theatrical tapestries from the Roma Sub Rosa novels where Rob Tapert produces either for TV or movie versions of these stories, perhaps with Lucy Lawless playing B
Michael Wagner
A good book on Caesar's rise to power, and his opposition aligned with the disbanded Roman Senate.
Another quality offering from Saylor in the Gordianus the Finder series, but not one of my favorites. This story sees Gordianus traveling to Massilia (modern day Marseilles) to find his son Meto. It takes place during the historical siege of Massilia by Ceasar's forces. The mystery in this story was not difficult to figure out for me, but there were a few twists that I did not see coming. Overall I found the tone of this novel to be rather negative (although it was during a siege and involves th ...more
Matt Thias
This novel occurs during a relatively little known period in Roman history, Caesar's Siege of Masillia. Its short as well compared to Stephen Saylor's other works, which isn't too big a deal since the setting doesn't lend itself to pages of historical narration. However the intimacy of the setting, the city of Massilia and the tension of being in a city under siege makes this a fantastic read. Only a few of the main characters in Gordianus's story make appearances, which makes everything seem ne ...more
Florencia Quarneti
I prefer it when Gordianus solves crimes, but I love the character!
Definitely better than the previous book, but that might be because I took a break between reading Saylor's Sub Rosa series. Perhaps the negatives (anachronistic ethics) aren't so noticeble if you don't immerse yourself in the series, or perhaps Saylor did a better job of writing characters that lived in the 40s BCE. Either way, this was a simple little mystery set in a fascinating time and place. Add in the return of Meto and I was hooked in a "junk food with some redeeming qualities" sort of w ...more
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Steven Saylor is the author of the long running Roma Sub Rosa series featuring Gordianus the Finder, as well as the New York Times bestselling novel, Roma and its follow-up, Empire. He has appeared as an on-air expert on Roman history and life on The History Channel.

Saylor was born in Texas and graduated with high honors from The University of Texas at Austin, where he studied history and class
More about Steven Saylor...

Other Books in the Series

Roma Sub Rosa (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Roman Blood (Roma Sub Rosa, #1)
  • Arms of Nemesis (Roma Sub Rosa, #2)
  • Catilina's Riddle (Roma Sub Rosa, #3)
  • The Venus Throw (Roma Sub Rosa, #4)
  • A Murder on the Appian Way (Roma Sub Rosa, #5)
  • The House of the Vestals (Roma Sub Rosa, #6)
  • Rubicon (Roma Sub Rosa, #7)
  • A Mist of Prophecies (Roma Sub Rosa, #9)
  • The Judgment of Caesar (Roma Sub Rosa, #10)
  • A Gladiator Dies Only Once (Roma Sub Rosa, #11)
Roma (Roma, #1) Roman Blood (Roma Sub Rosa, #1) Arms of Nemesis (Roma Sub Rosa, #2) Catilina's Riddle (Roma Sub Rosa, #3) A Murder on the Appian Way (Roma Sub Rosa, #5)

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