Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Pilate's Wife” as Want to Read:
Pilate's Wife
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Pilate's Wife

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  1,478 ratings  ·  197 reviews
A daughter of privilege in the most powerful empire the world has ever known, Claudia has a unique and disturbing "gift": her dreams have an uncanny way of coming true. As a rebellious child seated beside the tyrannical Roman Emperor Tiberius, she first spies the powerful gladiator who will ultimately be her one true passion. Yet it is the ambitious magistrate Pontius Pila ...more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published October 24th 2006 by William Morrow (first published 2006)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Pilate's Wife, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Pilate's Wife

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer BradleyThe Red Tent by Anita DiamantThe Secret Magdalene by Ki LongfellowFlow Down Like Silver by Ki LongfellowNefertiti by Michelle Moran
Awesome Women of the Ancient World
38th out of 200 books — 518 voters
The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey NiffeneggerThe Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim EdwardsThe Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy TanThe Kitchen God's Wife by Amy TanThe French Lieutenant's Woman by John Fowles
The Female Relative Phenomenon
60th out of 174 books — 87 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Bobbi Woods
I thoroughly enjoyed the history in this book--it pieced together some religious events for me that were previously vague. I think this book is about 80% historically accurate--the story created around it is a little weak, but interesting nonetheless.

Claudia, the main character, is the daughter of Roman Empire royalty. She posesses the gift of "sight." Claudia's visions range from vividly detailed and informative to almost nonexistent, and the changing level of detail in places and characters gi
...more
Rebecca
Aug 09, 2009 Rebecca rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of ancient Roman history
I didn’t get to this book when I picked it up at the beach in May, so I saved it for a fun read after my statistics exam. I love historical fiction about ancient Rome, and this book lived up to my expectations. The book follows the life and tragedies of Claudia, the wife of Pontius Pilate. Claudia travels with her family and then with her husband all across the Roman empire, and I appreciated May’s detailed descriptions of Antioch, Alexandria, Rome, and Jerusalem among other locales. Most of the ...more
The Library Lady
Okay, if this woman did so much historical research why does she get the small things wrong? Stuff like the old chestnut about "thumbs down" meaning to kill the losing gladiator, when modern scholars are pretty sure it's the opposite? She even gets the way Roman names were used wrong--she uses "Procula" as if it were a last name!

Pious Christians will recoil at her Mary Magdalene as Jesus's wife bit, but what bothers me more is the way she picks and choses her history and invents bits to fit her
...more
Sydney Avey
Last month I did a reading at a library in Sonora , CA and Antoinette May was the reader who preceded me. I was impressed by the number of years she spent researching Roman history and culture. I am interested in knowing about the cultural context in which Christ began his ministry and this seemed to fill the bill.

May uses restraint in her descriptions of Goddess worship, weaving it through a storyline rich in political and family history. Christ appears toward the end of the story as just anot
...more
Ron Charles
She appears in just a single verse of the Bible, but it's a riveting inflection point, a moment that dares us to imagine that events might go either way: Jesus stands before Pontius Pilate. The leaders of the Temple have accused him of treason and want him crucified, but Pilate is wavering. Then the Gospel of Matthew adds this tantalizing detail: "When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things ...more
Jen
Well, this was a steaming pile of poo.

So in the Bible, there is one (unnamed) mention of Pilate's wife. PW (as I will now refer to her) was later named Claudia by someone in 1619--so yeah 1600 years later, get a name.

So Antoinette May decides that Claudia was from the Claudia house (family of Julius Caesar EDITED: Actually, although his fam is often referred to as the Julio-Claudio family, Claudia would have been only related to Tiberius, the son of Livia by her first marriage, not to Julius's f
...more
kim
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jeri
Awful book, at least if you care about trifling details like Biblical accuracy. It's funny too, because she took an almost throw away verse in the New Testament and wove an entire story around it. That part of it was actually interesting and I enjoyed it. Unfortunately her research didn't seem to actually extend to the Bible or any of the mountains of credible scholarly work done on that text. Mary Magdalene was not a prostitute, and when I got to the wedding in Cana it was all I could do not to ...more
Fanda Kutubuku
Mengisahkan kehidupan Claudia Procula, yang kelak menjadi istri Pontius Pilatus, gubernur Romawi yang mengadili Yesus hingga berakhir pada penyaliban Yesus.

Sebenarnya tak ada data sejarah yang memadai tentang Claudia, maka Antoinette May menulisnya sebagai fiksi sejarah. Dimulai dari Claudia saat berusia 10 tahun dan menemukan bahwa ia dapat melihat masa depan lewat mimpi. Ia bahkan bisa meramal pemenang pertarungan gladiator, yang hasilnya benar. Sang gladiator pemenang bernama Holtan, dan kela
...more
Inês Montenegro
Não tendo prestado grande atenção à sinopse, ou já me tendo esquecido dela quando comecei a ler o livro, era dos que achavam que iam ter em mãos algo que iria revolver em torno da condenação de Cristo. Não sei bem no que isso tornaria a leitura, mas à primeira impressão, tantas páginas para um só episódio, por mais importante e interessante que seja, não me alegra particularmente.
Naturalmente, o enredo começa muito antes, quando Cláudia, a mulher de Pilatos, é ainda uma criança prestes a tornar-
...more
Will Byrnes
Claudia is the daughter of Tata, Germanicus’ top lieutenant. Agrippina, Germanicus’ wife, is a second, if not always the warmest, mother to her. We see the events of the times through the eyes of this youngster as she comes of age, beginning the tale when she is an early teen. Characters here will be familiar to anyone versed in the I, Claudius saga. I was fortunate in having recently seen the entire series again. Claudia is no ordinary teen girl, however. She has a gift. She sees things. She la ...more
Leslie
I enjoy a classic romance novel as much as the next reader (laughter), which is precisely why Pilate’s Wife was so shockingly disappointing. Maybe the let down stems from the fact that this novel is marketed as historical fiction. True there are historical events sprinkled here and there. It’s also true that the people depicted in this novel are historical figures. Certainly, the filler is a bunch of fiction…wait, so it is historical fiction! Then why am I left feeling yucky? I’ve actually thoug ...more
Rio (Lynne)
This was an OK read. I bought it so I could learn more about Roman History. The story is very fictional. It covers Claudia, the wife of Pontius Pilate's life. The positive is that this book opened up a lot of conversation with my Christian friends who study the bible (I have not, so I had many questions.) I googled a lot throughout this read. The author covers many debatable areas of Jesus' life. Did he go to Isis' Temple in Egypt? Did he marry a prostitute? I found many areas to be far-fetched, ...more
Sarah Beth
I loved this unusual perspective from the Roman Empire during the life of Jesus. Little is known about Pontius Pilate's wife Claudia, other than she likely was from a wealthy family and of a higher social class than her husband. May has created an intriguing image of what Claudia's life might have been like.

Claudia is a great worshipper of Isis and a major theme of the book is her connection to the Goddess, religious rituals, and her ability to sometimes predict the future. I didn't anticipate t
...more
PurplyCookie
Claudia Procula (or Procles) was the wife of Pontius Pilate and accompanied him to Judea during his prefecture there (from 26 to 36 CE). Little verifiable fact is known about Pilate's wife and, despite this, May has created a vibrant novel which succeeds in bring Claudia to life.

Pilate's wife is mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew 27:19: “When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have though nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this d
...more
Jenny GB
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rusty
The tale is told by Claudia, the wife of Pilate, who has visions of the future. Drawn by the goddess, Isis, she becomes an initiate and follower. She travels with her family because her father is a good friend of Germanicus, her uncle and a famous general. Men have no interest for Claudia until she is drawn to Pilate and marries him. At this point Germanicus becomes ill and is the first of the family to die. She loses her parents, two brothers, her sister and her aunt at the whim of Tiberius. Kn ...more
Leah
This was an interesting piece of historical fiction that was accurate at times, and shockingly assuming at others. The author spent many years studying Roman history, which gave the story an authentic feeling when temples, gods, politics, residences, and travel are described. The story begins with Claudia as a child, goes up to the time when she meets Pontius Pilate, and describes her marriage and life with him. She suffers incredible loss throughout her life (as a character in this story, since ...more
Jori Richardson
Claudia, a young woman from a wealthy family in Ancient Rome, grows up amidst the swirling politics of the Emperor Tiberius, to whom she is distantly related. From a young age, she possesses a second sight, in which she sees and dreams of things that have not yet happened - sometimes tiny inconsequential details, other times things that will have a profound impact on her life, the lives of others, and on history itself. She is eventually married to a handsome man named Pontius Pilate, with whom ...more
Soumi
Is it right to play with history to such an extent? Specially when religious sentiments are involved. Be it Christian or Jew or pagan. Why do people bring the good name of Jesus in all this crap. God or not,he was a great healer and reformer. What has one to prove by marrying him off... As if making him a mortal will lessen his worth... Whatever!! Claudia procula is known in testaments for her visions of jesus but for the book, main character herself is so inconsistent. Not a single incident in ...more
Ashley W
I had a love/hate affair with this book. Pilate's Wife started off interesting and I was enthralled with Claudia and her family's life, it got boring when she married Pilate and had her affair, got interesting again when she got to Judaea, and then it got bad really REALLY quickly. I felt Claudia put herself into certain situations that she knew (even without her Sight) would end badly, such as having her affair, but she did it anyway. There were times when she had the makings of being a strong ...more
Gabriella
I am very confused over this book. I love ancient Rome and its surrounds, but I don't think I like the part Jesus took in this novel. I know, its a book about Pilate's wife. Pontius Pilate. Jesus kind of comes with that, but I still found it hard to read about Him in a fiction novel as a character.

What made me complete this novel despite my misgivings was the writing. It flowed so smoothly and made events form seamlessly. Ms May definitely has a gift in writing. I visualised these locations as i
...more
Joan
May takes us into the world of the Roman Empire during the time of Jesus. Well researched, well writen - held my attention and piqued my curiousity

From the publisher? A daughter of privilege in the most powerful empire the world has ever known, Claudia has a unique and disturbing "gift": her dreams have an uncanny way of coming true. As a rebellious child seated beside the tyrannical Roman Emperor Tiberius, she first spies the powerful gladiator who will ultimately be her one true passion. Yet
...more
Jennifer (JC-S)
Claudia Procula (or Procles) was the wife of Pontius Pilate and accompanied him to Judea during his prefecture there (from 26 to 36 CE). Little verifiable fact is known about Pilate’s wife and, despite this, Ms May has created a vibrant novel which succeeds in bring Claudia to life.
Pilate’s wife is mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew 27:19 : ‘When he was set down on the judgement seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have though nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things th
...more
Joseph Soltero
Wonderfully written and engrossing novel.

Pilate's wife narrates in the first person the story of Claudia, member of the Claudian family of newly imperial Rome. Claudia is gifted with "the sight". She can get glimpses and feelings about things that are going to occur.

I must say that at times it is difficult to sympathize with Claudia, who commits many actions on a whim (which I won't get into here, lest I spoil it for future readers), not thinking things through to the end, always eager to plea
...more
Mirah W
Engaging historical fiction. I liked the focus on Claudia, her family life, and her marriage to Pilate. I was perplexed by her "sight". I know a few of her dreams came to fruition but so many people perceived her as having a gift after one incident. I think her ability was exaggerated. She was an interesting figure but her constant whining to Isis and the mystogogue annoyed me. I think Rachel added so much humanity to the story. I liked how the author revealed her history and the roles she plays ...more
Emily
Jul 20, 2007 Emily rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of the tv show "Rome"
Shelves: booksofthepast
It's true, I love Italian historical fiction. This book did much to indulge that love. Readers follow Claudia Procula as she matures from a safe childhood with her parents, who were Roman gentry, into an adulthood of religious devotion, romantic intrigue, and prophetic dreams. Claudia is a flawed character, but she serves as an excellent narrator for the time period. She gives us a unique perspective of the man famous for slaying Jesus Christ, the woman who was rumored to be Jesus's lover, and J ...more
Juliette
Claudia: Daughter of Rome was a nice follow up to my previous read, Cleopatra's Daughter. It's set one generation later, and followes the story of Claudia, daughter of Marcus - adviser to Germanicus, a favoured general of the Roman army, and Agrippa's grandson. Set in the years of Tiberius' reign, this story touches on important moments in history, including the crucifixion of Jesus.
While I enjoyed this book, I felt it was a little slow, and possibly dense.
Cathi95
(Historic Fiction 2006) Almost like two books in one - a historical commentary, with good descriptions of the times and places she writes about, and a romance worthy of paperbacks. The family history is interesting, and the interactions between the various factions in the Roman Empire are intriguing. I don't know the background enough to comment on accuracy, but sometimes it felt right and others, maybe not so factual. I knew little about Pontius Pilate other than that he washed his hands of Chr ...more
Brianna
I feel like the main character, Claudia, went from a strong personality to a weak one, then spent the rest of the novel fluctuating back and forth.

She started out independent, found self-sufficiency through her devotion to Isis ... then promptly became a weak-minded ignoramus. For a person with her seeming devotion, and who believes in and possesses Sight, I can't figure out why she would ignore every warning the temple "priest" spelled out for her in no uncertain terms. I felt like she deserved
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Wisdom's Daughter: A Novel of Solomon and Sheba
  • The Triumph of Deborah
  • Zipporah, Wife of Moses (Canaan, #2)
  • The Memoirs of Helen of Troy
  • Eve
  • The Gilded Chamber: A Novel of Queen Esther
  • Penelope's Daughter
  • Stealing Athena
  • Antony and Cleopatra (Masters of Rome, #7)
  • The Princess of Nowhere
  • The Betrayal: The Lost Life of Jesus: A Novel
  • Signora Da Vinci
  • The Fool's Tale
  • Roma (Roma, #1)
  • Havah: The Story of Eve
  • Mistress of Rome (The Empress of Rome, #1)
  • Deborah's Story (Women of the Bible)
The Sacred Well Haunted Houses of California: A Ghostly Guide A mulher de Pilatos Witness to War: A Biography of Marguerite Higgins Passionate Pilgrim: The Extraordinary Life of Alma Reed

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »