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Poseidon's Gold (Marcus Didius Falco #5)

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  2,971 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
"GREAT STUFF...A classic hard-boiled, smart-mouth detective who happens to work in ancient Rome."
--Molly Ivins
Los Angeles Daily News
After six months in wild Germania, imperial gumshoe Marcus Didius Falco is back in Rome sweet Rome. But his apartment has been ransacked. And although he desperately needs 400,000 sesterces in order to marry his aristocratic love, Helena, his
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Hardcover, 336 pages
Published October 4th 1994 by Crown Publishers, Inc. (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jamie Collins
I really liked this one, more so than the previous book. Falco and Helena are back in Rome, trying to solve a mystery involving one of Falco's late brother's schemes, and Falco is forced to interact with his estranged father.

This series continues to be a pleasure to read. The books are funny, with a touching love story and likable characters. There are very nice details about the period, and the author's narrative style is really growing on me.
Marilag
The Didius boys! Finally, Falco's returned to Italy after that lengthy six-month trip to Germania Libera. Not that I had much to complain about in the previous book (I am still amused at the ending myself). But a Roman mystery is not a proper Roman mystery until one is in the city herself! Plus, Poseidon's Gold had to do with artwork and implicated murders.

It was much more riveting when it was Falco's innocence that was at question here, and even more so when he spent most of his time running ar
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Carol
Aug 25, 2013 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dead-tree, mystery
As always, I enjoyed this Marcus Didius Falco novel by Lindsey Davis. It seemed a bit slower paced than her other Falco books but that may be just me being tired and being pulled in a dozen different directions while trying to read it. Certainly there was nothing about the book that would make me not finish it.
Jack
Feb 08, 2009 Jack rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The best one so far - you learn much moire about Falco's family, and throgh them, you learn more about Falco. Also a really good mystery.
Melissa McShane
The retconning in this one kept me from really enjoying it. In The Silver Pigs we're told that Falco's father abandoned the family when he was young, running off with some woman, and has totally disappeared. From that point up until this book, the story gradually changed: first there's an auctioneer who might be the long-lost Didius patriarch; then it's taken for granted that he is, but none of the family have contact with him; and now (view spoiler) ...more
Ed
Jan 20, 2011 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Crime anf Historical fiction fans.
Sometimes I wish I liked Lindsey Davis' Marcus Didius Falco's series more than I do. I am put off by Falco's contemporary attitude on the one hand but entranced with the stories, the characters and the plots on the other hand.

This was a good one with lots of twists and in addition to the usual characters some interesting new ones. We get to know Falco's father a lot better and also learn more about his older brother, Festus, a charming soldier and con man. His lover, the aristocratic Helena, is
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Helen
If you went by what appears in this book you'd wonder how Marcus Didius ever managed to keep body and soul together. We don't really follow all his inquiries into witness statements and he mentions spending hours poking around Rome but we don't know what he was doing. In spite of that this was an interesting case of great personal interest to Marcus (I'm assuming we may be free with his personal name) since it involved his famous brother, his mother, several more distant relations, and his fathe ...more
Terence
Oct 29, 2012 Terence rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Historical fiction & mystery fans
Lindsey Davis must have met my friend Mike's family. His parents are first-generation Sicilian immigrants and could have provided the source material for Falco and his.

Poseidon's Gold finds Falco discovering uncomfortable facts about his dead brother Festus, the darling of the family and decorated hero of the Judaean War, and he becomes the prime suspect in the murder of one of his brother's former associates.

As usual, though, despite a certain pig-headed stubbornness Falco manages to work thing
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Rene
Nov 09, 2015 Rene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really loved this one, probably because it focused on Helena and Falco working together and it was set in Rome (with all of your favorite characters making appearances)!
Rachel Hawes
The one with the brother, the long lost father, the underground artworld and the statue of Poseidon (or is it Zeus!?)
Bettie☯
Mar 06, 2014 Bettie☯ rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Laura, Carey, Susanna, Wanda, Pat
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
aPriL does feral sometimes
'Poseidon's Gold', book 5 in the Marcus Didius Falco ancient Rome detective series, finally fills in the backstory of Falco's dead brother, Festus, Roman war hero and legendary talented older brother. We readers have been given to understand from the previous books Festus was the best and brightest sibling of the Didius family, and his early death during the Roman war in Judea has continued to darken the family's normal high spirits and energies.

Another thread throughout the books has been Falc
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Steve Clark
One of the earlier Falco mysteries. I like ones like this one that are set primarily in Rome. In this once Falco has to work with his estranged father to clear his dead brother's name and clear a crushing debt.
Muff
Jan 13, 2017 Muff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Falco and Helena's story advances. The tale encompasses much of Marcus' family and his desire to marry Helena.
Data
Gotta love everything this smart-mouth guy does; he just can't help himself.
Amy "the book-bat"
I needed a book with a seahorse on the cover and this audiobook has a tiny one, so I listened to it for a challenge. The story was interesting, but this version is very abridged as it is more of a radio play produced by the BBC. It is interesting listening to a story set in Rome in 72AD and everyone haveing British accents. I did question a scene which mentioned a woman carrying a parcel of spare ribs from a take-away. Did they have take-away/carry out back then? Did the ribs have BBQ sauce? It ...more
sabisteb
Mar 18, 2011 sabisteb rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hörspiele
Nach seinen Abendteuer in Germanien (Eisenhand) ist Falco nun endlich wieder zurück in Rom. Der Empfang ist bekannt unfreundlich: Falcos Dachwohnung ist eine Einzige Katastrophe, das Dach ist eingebrochen und sein Schlafzimmer ein einziger Schutthaufen. Das Ausweichquartier „Hotel Mama“ erweist sich als ebenso unfreundlich, denn dort wird Falco von einem „Freund“ seines verstobenen Bruders, des Kriegshelden, erwartet. Sein Bruder Festus schuldet einigen Kameraden noch eine große Menge Geld und F ...more
Dyana
Jan 18, 2015 Dyana rated it really liked it
After the disappointing 4th in the series, this 5th is a real treat. It's 72 A.D. and Marcus Didius Falco and his love Helena Justina have just returned to Rome from a long six months mission commissioned by Emperor Vespasian. He finds his "home" and possessions ransacked by squatters. Falco then heads to his mother's house where he finds another squatter there, an ex-legionnaire friend of his deceased brother Festus. He has been demanding investment money for himself and his legion that was loa ...more
Ruth
Jun 06, 2012 Ruth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-historical
C1992. FWFTB: Ex-legionary, schemes, suspect, stabbed, evidence.
I am working my way slowly through the series and this is the 5th out of 19(?) books. It was great to get a bit of Marcus’ back story regarding his relationship with his father and his brother. I found this book to be somehow more intense than the previous ones but perhaps that was because Marcus was trying to clear his name. Marcus must be the most unlikely hero in Latin history. Take his less than spectacular entry to Rome after h
...more
Melissa
Sep 13, 2016 Melissa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Falco's brother Festus left some problems behind when he died. Does he owe money for a statue which may have sunk on a ship? Another good read by Davis. Lots of twists and turns and learned more about Rome.
M.G. Mason
Aug 18, 2012 M.G. Mason rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
And so to book five in the “Falco” series and our hero, fresh back from his trip to Germania, returns to the tragic news that his elder brother Festus has died in a ship wreck. Festus was a bit of a schemer it seems, and was on a scam regarding gold and stolen antiques when he died.

So it is down to Falco’s mother to hire Falco to clear the family name and discover what his brother was up to. Whats more, his mother has a legionary lodger who claims to be an old friend of Festus and was owed a lot
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Nancy
Oh it’s so good to be back in (ancient) Rome. Marcus Didius Falco and Helena Justina, accompanied by a Celt for a bodyguard, return to Rome from Germany. It’s late, it’s raining, and they are desperately tired, but Falco’s old quarters have been overrun by squatters so they stumble on to Falco’s mother’s place. But there too they find a stranger, a fellow legionnaire of Falco’s dead brother Festus who has his muddy boots up on the kitchen table like he owns the place. The man has a grievance, ov ...more
Rebeka
So much family drama! Still, with Marcus and Helena, it's always enjoyable.
I had to give the book three stars instead of four though for two reasons:
1) The character make a HUGE DEAL about how Marcus in in SO MUCH DANGER of getting arrested... and then when Helena is arrested and he goes to see the magistrate or whatever... NOTHING HAPPENS!!! Really? The book jacket and the first however-many chapters get us all worked up over something that's resolved in six pages?
2) I really did not like the t
...more
Shari
Jun 20, 2012 Shari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the fifth novel in the mystery series featuring Marcus Didius Falco, an informer and sleuth in Rome at the time of Vespasian.
Falco is eager to get back to to Rome after what has seemed like an endless journey from Germania where his last adventure took him. Falco and Helena are shocked to find the apartment in Rome has been ransacked and used by squatters. Falco has been talked into staying with his mother until he finds out that she already has a lodger, an ex-legionary friend of Festus
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Werehare
Dec 17, 2012 Werehare rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
7,5/10

Il voto è forse troppo alto, ma in mezzo alle schifezze che mi sono trovata a leggere ultimamente questo libro è una perla rara.
Il protagonista è verosimile nelle sue reazioni agli eventi, simpatico e soprattutto umano, non esente da una bella dose di sfighe che però sa prendere con quell'ironia che pervade tutta la narrazione e la rende gradevole, mai mortalmente seria; la città in cui Marco si muove è vivace e ben tratteggiata (non so se anche attendibile storicamente, ma non ci sono gr
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Writerlibrarian
Almost 4 stars. Marcus Didius and Helena are back in Rome after their adventures in Germany. They come back to mayhem, blackmail, soldiers seeking retribution and the ghost of Marcus' older brother Festus.

Festus is one of the best dead character I've read. He has been dead for 3 years but still haunts every one and his antics are messing up the family. This fifth novel in Davis' series is more about family, family loyalty, family sticky together even when one of the family nearly cost you your
...more
Scot
Jul 06, 2009 Scot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fifth in this series set in a well researched first century Rome. This mystery involves discovering whatever became of a statue that Falco's deceased older brother seems to have lost in a major swindle attempt just before he died in a battle in faroff Judea. There is at least one murder connected to this intrigue, and because Falco's extended family is now directly threatened by those claiming recompense both for the buying and the selling of this lost artifact, he must put aside the issues he h ...more
Sonnrain
Oct 03, 2010 Sonnrain rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookcrossing, krimi
Dieser Band aus der Reihe um den Privatermittler M. Didius Falco zeigt die gewohnte Sorgfalt der Autorin in der Recherche. Das Römische Alltagsleben, die Gesellschaft und Lebensweise wirkt plötzlich ganz nah und nachfühlbar.
Dazu kommt ein genügend komplexer Fall, diesmal um den älteren Bruder Festus, der einige Jahre zuvor in Judäa den Heldentod getorben ist. Es taucht ein ehemaliger Kamerad dieses Bruders auf, der Geld fordert, das ihm der angeblich schuldet. Am nächsten Morgen aber wird der Ce
...more
Ken Kugler
May 05, 2016 Ken Kugler rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoy this series by Lindsey Davis. In this installment, Poseidon's Gold, Marcus Didius Falco is still acting like a very big jerk and has not figured out how to really act with the love of his life,Helena Justina. The story revolves around his brother, Festus, who died in the Judean war but was involved in some huge scheme. Soldiers lost money and want it back.
All the while, he has to make peace with his father, who left his mother and their children for "the redhead", come up with500,
...more
Rosanne Lortz
Apr 11, 2011 Rosanne Lortz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Poseidon’s Gold, Marcus is forced to deal with the artistic mess that his “war hero” brother Festus left behind at his death. Unbeknownst to his family, Festus had been using his time in Judea to run several merchant ventures; but one of the ships disappeared with its cargo, and now the investors want the Didius family to give them their money back. Fraudulent sculptures run amok, Marcus must confront his anger at the father who abandoned him, and Helena discovers that Marcus’s relationship w ...more
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Lindsey Davis, historical novelist, was born in Birmingham, England in 1949. Having taken a degree in English literature at Oxford University (Lady Margaret Hall), she became a civil servant. She left the civil service after 13 years, and when a romantic novel she had written was runner up for the 1985 Georgette Heyer Historical Novel Prize, she decided to become a writer, writing at first romanti ...more
More about Lindsey Davis...

Other Books in the Series

Marcus Didius Falco (1 - 10 of 20 books)
  • The Silver Pigs (Marcus Didius Falco, #1)
  • Shadows in Bronze (Marcus Didius Falco, #2)
  • Venus in Copper (Marcus Didius Falco, #3)
  • The Iron Hand of Mars (Marcus Didius Falco, #4)
  • Last Act in Palmyra (Marcus Didius Falco, #6)
  • Time to Depart (Marcus Didius Falco, #7)
  • A Dying Light in Corduba (Marcus Didius Falco, #8)
  • Three Hands in the Fountain (Marcus Didius Falco, #9)
  • Two for the Lions (Marcus Didius Falco, #10)
  • One Virgin Too Many (Marcus Didius Falco, #11)

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