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Sand of the Arena: A Gladiators of the Empire Novel
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Sand of the Arena: A Gladiators of the Empire Novel (Gladiators of the Empire #1)

3.96  ·  Rating Details  ·  91 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
In AD 63 the long arm of the Roman Empire stretches across the European continent and the gladiatorial games are awash in blood and glory. For Quintus Honorius Romanus, son of one of the richest men in Rome, everything is as it should be—as long as he can sneak off to the arena for a little entertainment. Things go drastically wrong, however, when Quintus loses his family, ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 1st 2006 by McBooks Press (first published November 1st 2005)
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Jun 19, 2008 Mary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: historical fiction enthusiasts
I had the pleasure of meeting author Jim Duffy last Spring at the first North American conference of the Historical Novel Society in Salt Lake City, Utah. Jim was working on the final edits of his book "Sand of the Arena" that will usher in a new series of novels, "Gladiators of the Empire". Jim was kind enough to send me a pre-release galley of his new book and I have enjoyed reading it. Jim has conducted extensive research in the life and training of gladiators and it shows in the depth of det ...more
Sep 30, 2010 Denise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A tale of betrayal that ends on the sands of the Roman arena. A young nobleman has a passion for gladiators. He and his father attend many games together until both of his parents are drowned in a tragic boating accident. The young man survives but is betrayed by his slave who switches clothing and identities with him. No one believes his wild story that he's actually the nobleman and he's sent away to work at the family horse farm. One day he runs off and joins a gladiator school. Over the next ...more
Aug 26, 2015 Asher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Robert Magness
The detail and information is what makes this book so interesting. It's hard to put down, as well, since you get drawn into the world. I knew where it was going the whole time and was confident of the ending, which is not a negative criticism. I was happy taking the trip and enjoyed the destination. It's a fun summer read--plenty of action, intrigue and sex to keep the brain stimulated.
Rena Sherwood
OK, so it's a history lesson as taught by Spike TV, but still surprisingly enjoyable -- for those who like to read about the roaring Roman Empire, that is. The history is probably questionable, but Duffy explains some of this in the Introduction. I do wonder how the curses translated from old Italian/ Celtic into modern English. WARNING: The animal hunts make for nightmarish reading.
Becca Rubenfeld
Eh, it was mediocre... there are worse stories out there. I do enjoy historical fiction, and so the basic setting and premise were very good.

The story was simply absent. The whole thing read as Act One....... I realize this is the first book in a series, but still. I need a conflict of substance and developed relationships and characters in EACH book, and this didn't deliver.
Rebecca Huston
Aug 25, 2010 Rebecca Huston rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Story of a well-born young man who becomes a gladiator in Ancient Rome. Interesting story as long as there's fighting going on, but there are some bad plot holes, plenty of details, not too much silliness for a first novel.

Longer review can be found here:
Tim Bennett
Jan 19, 2012 Tim Bennett rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. it was historically accurate and the author is very good at putting his fictional characters into the front lines of history
Jul 18, 2013 Isabel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sand in the Arena: I really enjoyed this story and the author's writing is superb. The character and plot is engaging. This one's a keeper.
Dec 11, 2012 David rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book.
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Other Books in the Series

Gladiators of the Empire (2 books)
  • The Fight for Rome (Gladiators of the Empire #2)

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