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Nobody Loves a Centurion
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Nobody Loves a Centurion (SPQR #6)

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  652 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
In Nobody Loves a Centurion, playboy sleuth Decius joins Caesar in Gaul, where the great general has come, has seen, but is having quite a hard time conquering. The Roman soldiers are pretty much stalled in their camp, which gives officers with a sadistic bent the opportunity to browbeat, actually beat, and to think up generally cruel things to do to the men under them. It ...more
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Published (first published January 1st 1995)
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Sep 20, 2016 Tonisq rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ενα απο τα καλύτερα, αν όχι το καλύτερο, της σειράς
Georgina Ortiz
Apr 30, 2012 Georgina Ortiz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The best in the series. So far :)

I've long wanted to find out how the Roman Empire became, well, an empire. This book is a perfect peek into the Roman legion—the well-known secret (pardon the oxymoron) behind Rome's rise to historical glory. Pair that with J.M. Roberts' enviable writing (a perfect blend of wit, philosophy and drollery), and you've got a solid winner in Nobody Loves a Centurion.

I know that I have been gushing nonstop about the books in JMR's SPQR. But if you are at least curious
"Men do not achieve the centurionate by being mild. Nobody loves a centurion. But they're seldom murdered." So says Caesar to Decius Metellus the Younger, who is putting in his mandatory year of military service in Gaul with Caesar. A brutal centurion has been murdered; Burrus, one of Decius's clients, and prime suspect, along with the other members of his contubernium, has been accused of the murder. Unless the murderer can be found in ten days, the squad will be executed. So Decius and his sla ...more
Lance McMurchy
Mar 07, 2013 Lance McMurchy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book reminds me of a line from the TV show Blackadder, "it twists and turns like a twisty, turnie thing". Great book. It is full with lots of great themes; roman army life; the religion and culture of Gauls and Germans and how they contrast in the first century BC, as well as there fighting style. thrown in a great murder mystery. And, like you expect from JMR, lots of great one liners. this book had a better flow to it than the previous book in the series, and certainly keeps you thinking. ...more
Joyce Lagow
From time to time, Decius Caecilius Metellus the Younger finds it necessary to leave his beloved Rome, thanks to his nearly supernatural ability to anger powerful people with his snooping into murder, conspiracy and the like. His deadly enemy, Publius Clodius Pulscher is now a tribune of the plebs, a powerful position which grants Clodius immunity from prosecution or any other legal action for the year of the tribuneship. Decius, no suicidal hero, takes up Julius Caesar's offer of a military tri ...more
Aug 18, 2015 Ian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 07, 2016 Larry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the best book in John Maddox Roberts SPQR series that I have read, so far. By this point, Maddox has an easy familiarity with his protagonist Decius. He doesn't feel the need to trot out all the special effects and tropes that he has developed in the five previous novels in the series. Of course there is a very attractive woman and an unusual sexual encounter. Yes, Decius gets beat up. But the venue is a Roman army camp in the wilderness of Gaul, a location that Maddox is able to bring t ...more
Another book where we venture out of Rome while our hero is being shuffled off the scene for various reasons. Here Decius has joined Caesar's staff in Gaul in the early days of what will be the making of Caesar militarily. A centurion is found dead and the son of Burrus, a client of Decius, along with his men are suspected because they had been singled out for punishment by the dead man. Caesar puts Decius in charge of the investigation. Germans and Gauls are mixed up in the investigation and we ...more
Jun 05, 2012 Denise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This time Decius (our main character) and his slave, Hermes, are sent to Gaul to fight with Julius Caesar in his latest military campaign. Decius shows up in full military dress and becomes the laughing stock of the veteran soldiers. Caesar assigns him the duty of finding the killer(s) of a sadistic Centurion (First Spear). The deceased was feared and hated by the troops and the honor and dignity of the legion is at stake. If Decius can't name the killer within a few days, Caesar will have no ch ...more
Vicki Cline
Nov 03, 2009 Vicki Cline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: roman-mysteries
Decius has gone to Gaul to serve under Julius Caesar. A young client of Decius', a legionary, has been accused, along with others, of killing a brutal centurion. Decius has to figure out who the real culprit is to save their lives. One of the funny parts of the book happens when Decius, one of whose jobs is to copy Caesar's commentaries on the war (Caesar has atrocious handwriting and is a bad speller), rereads what he's been copying and realizes what literary genius Caesar is. This is an intere ...more
Jan 28, 2017 Glen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great mystery set in ancient Rome.

Decius is sent to Gaul, to assist Julius Caesar in his war. He finds this is not like other wars, as the Germans are trying to cross the River Tiber. A centurion is found murdered, and Decius is assigned to solve the mystery. On the plus side, he is given a beautiful German slave to do with as he wishes. Nice work if you can get it.

Nice descriptions of Gallic and Germanic cultures of the times, with a pretty good mystery too.
Feb 09, 2016 Catsalive rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Quite an amusing read. Decius is a likeable character with a bit of humour to him & the period detail is interesting. A bit too boys'-own for me to want to read any more. I do prefer Lindsey Davis' Didius Falco series, more substance & more real, perhaps.
Definitely one of the bast books so far. The mystery is just twisty enough to keep you guessing without being so twisty you get lost. The action is smooth and continuous with plenty of Decius snark and Decius/Hermes sniping.
Aug 28, 2012 Margaret rated it really liked it
A great book. I loved all the interplay between the Gauls, Germans, and Romans. Also since Roman military dynamics are not my forte, I really liked Roberts's research and discussion of the inner workings of a legionary camp.
Apr 12, 2016 Norma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, reviewed, roman, 2016
"Sometimes Persuasion isn't Quite Responsive"
Excellent murder mystery set in Caesar's camp amongst the troops; well narrated by John Lee. Historical setting with Romans, Gauls and Germans,, thrills and humour and no graphic sex - a winner in every way
Aug 04, 2008 Dorothy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of ancient Roman history and of mysteries
This entry in the series of ancient Roman mysteries finds Decius in Gaul with Caesar's army. But wherever Decius goes there is always a mystery to be solved and Gaul is no different. It is a mystery and a set of characters that keep the reader engrossed from beginning to end.
Elena. (theresmiling)
My edition: German Audiobook - Audible exklusiv, gelesen von Erich Räuker
Mel Allred
It was an interesting mix of police detective mystery and Ancient Roman history. I enjoyed the tongue in cheek humor theauthor allowed the hero, son of a Senator, and unwilling participant.
May 10, 2015 Georgene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another enjoyable entry in this fascinating series.
Dec 13, 2013 D. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Terrible but awesome. 4 stars, no gay, would recommend.
May 19, 2010 Jack rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
OK, but not great. Maybe it was the setting, a military camp of Caesar's, or maybe it was the writing style, but I never got very interested in the story.
Didn't like this one as much as the other. For some reason it took me longer to get into the story. I miss Rome and Asklepiodes.
May 31, 2008 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was fun to read, and I enjoyed learning a little about ancient Rome while I read. The book is part of a series of mysteries. It is a fairly quick read and the story is well told.
Aug 23, 2013 Bonnie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was entertaining, as all the preceding books in this series have been. However, for some reason I didn't like it quite as well.
May 06, 2015 Paladin1420 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I enjoyed this better than any of the series so far. It takes place outside of Rome an presents a very believable view of life in a Roman legion in Gaul in the first century BC.
Williamandlynn rated it really liked it
Jan 31, 2013
SokiNK rated it really liked it
Apr 26, 2016
Marcel rated it it was amazing
Jan 27, 2013
Andrew rated it really liked it
Feb 15, 2012
Kim rated it really liked it
Jan 08, 2011
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aka Mark Ramsay

John Maddox Roberts is the author of numerous works of science fiction and fantasy, in addition to his successful historical SPQR mystery series. The first two books in the series have recently been re-released in trade paperback. He lives in New Mexico with his wife.
More about John Maddox Roberts...

Other Books in the Series

SPQR (1 - 10 of 19 books)
  • SPQR I: The King's Gambit (SPQR #1)
  • SPQR II: The Catiline Conspiracy (SPQR, #2)
  • SPQR III: The Sacrilege (SPQR, #3)
  • SPQR IV: The Temple of the Muses (SPQR, #4)
  • SPQR V: Saturnalia (SPQR, #5)
  • SPQR VII: The Tribune's Curse (SPQR, #7)
  • Mightier Than The Sword (SPQR 7.5)
  • SPQR VIII: The River God's Vengeance (SPQR, #8)
  • An Academic Question (SPQR #8.5)
  • The Princess and the Pirates (SPQR, #9)

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