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New Pompeii

(New Pompeii #1)

3.37  ·  Rating details ·  823 ratings  ·  133 reviews
In the near future, energy giant Novus Particles develops the technology to transport objects and people from the deep past to the present. Their biggest secret: New Pompeii. A replica of the city hidden deep in central Asia, filled with Romans pulled through time a split second before the volcano erupted.

Historian Nick Houghton doesn't know why he's been chosen to be the
Paperback, 459 pages
Published June 21st 2016 by Titan Books
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Average rating 3.37  · 
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 ·  823 ratings  ·  133 reviews

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Jun 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Set sometime in the near future, man has conquered time travel – though with some limitations. An evil corporation has monopolised the technology and is using if for their own nefarious purposes; purposes that become clear as the novel progresses. Somehow they have managed to recreate New Pompeii, along with the actual residents of the city. On the surface, this looks to be the perfect set-up for study and exploitation in a theme-park/zoo kind of way, until people start going missing and then ap ...more
Jul 19, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: sci-fi
Have you ever, on a very hot day, reached into a cooler to grab that last ice cold beverage? The thirst compounds the frenetic fumbling, as you feel the can and yet the melted water mixed in the ice conspire in tandem to deny you the beverage. As abstruse as my comparison may seem, this is EXACTLY how I felt reading this book. Somewhere, mixed in with a great deal of nonsense is something great waiting to be grasped, yet it keeps squirting away. I really wanted to like this book. It seemed such ...more
Mar 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book for free from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Also posted on my blog, Rinn Reads.

I can actually remember when I first heard about New Pompeii. I’d just finished reading A Darker Shade of Magic, and flicked to the back of the book to read about upcoming titles from Titan Books – and there it was. A Jurassic Park style element involving ancient Romans? Err, yes please and thank you. I felt my little archaeologist heart drop a little when I saw the wo
Dec 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
Definitely a thinker. An interesting concept and a lot of questioning on the paradoxes of time travel.
The story is generally interesting , maybe could have been expanded in parts .
The ending stops you and makes you think and rethink the whole thing.
I reread the last few sections several times to grasp all the layers.
All the characters ran together because no one was really clearly defined. The protagonist was pretty feeble and rarely much of a doer. I was intrigued by the premise (who wouldn't be?), but the execution left me cold. I kept expecting it to be or do more than I ever got.

Also the protagonist must have been a terrible ancient historian, because he never took an attendant (or slave) with him anywhere. You need a slave to carry your torch after dark, you judge a man's importance by the size of his
Seregil of Rhiminee
Jun 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Risingshadow.

Daniel Godfrey's New Pompeii is one of the most intriguing reading experiences of the year, because it's an enjoyable and original blend of various elements. What makes this debut novel especially intriguing is that the author gives a whole new twist to the fate of Pompeii by writing about how a company has saved most of the people from Pompeii and placed them into a replica city by means of new technology.

I was impressed by New Pompeii and its entertainment
Jun 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
New Pompeii is a great tale of how a company who gets ahold and develops a new technology that can transport matter through time makes all the wrong choices with it. Through vividly described characters, it takes the reader on a story that makes you want to keep reading. I was unable to put New Pompeii down, and can't wait for the sequel to release in 2017. Highly recommended. ...more
Tim Hicks
Jul 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: science-fiction

Lookit, when you decide to write a time travel story, you've probably given away the fifth star already. And when it's your first SF novel, you're playing with fire. It's something solid, award-winning writers have struggled badly with.

I was alerted right away by the tired old trope of the struggling doctoral student about to lose his funding at a backwater university. Uh-oh, I thought, here's the Nebbish Observer whose purpose is to have stuff happen to him. Soon we meet Astridge, a sne
I really didn't think much of this book. From the description I expected to enjoy it. It started well but about half way through I started to think it was going nowhere and by the end, I was sure of it!

A large part of the problem was seemingly unconnected second story running through the main story. It was distracting and added nothing to the novel.

I think that the author had a great concept but didn't quite know what to do with it. I'm sorry that I went to the trouble of reading to the end.
David Harris
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I honestly don't know how to categorise this book. SF? Fantasy? Historical? It's probably all three but above all it's a rollicking good adventure.

Godfrey plays with the ideas of alternate timelines, of changing history. Here, that's done through mysterious technology owned by the sinister firm Novus Particles. NovusPart has found a way to transport matter - including people - from the past. There are limits to this. They can't fetch anything from less than 30 years ago, and they're forbidden fr
Andy Angel
Feb 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Part Science Fiction, Part Fantasy, part Thriller, this all adds up to one heck of a ride. The fact that this is the author's first novel makes it even more impressive.

The general gist of the story is that NovusPart, a large energy company have discovered a new technology that allows them to bring matter from the past to 'the now'. They have started by bringing citizens from Pompeii (hey, it's not a spoiler, the clue is in the title) forward and housing them in the replica New Pompeii. They do
Linda Acaster
Aug 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The devil is in the detail, and so it plays out in this novel of the close future when particle acceleration has enabled things, and finally people, to be thrust forward in time. There are limitations, time itself being one, but the power is heady... and with power comes paranoia.

The people of Pompeii – or some of the people of Pompeii – have been hauled into the present and into a purpose-built replica of their old city. Except there are limitations, and the devil is always in the detail, for
I enjoyed elements of this SF thriller - some intriguing characters (especially Kirsten, although I don't think her fascinating circumstances were explored enough) - but the Roman element didn't convince me in the slightest. I am very willing to believe the impossible in thrillers but this didn't work for me. 3 stars rather than 2 because of Kirsten.

Jun 29, 2019 added it
Shelves: science-fiction
A company tries to create a new energy source by bringing particles through time. They realise if they bring enough at one time they can bring the past into the present. Hence why the plot around the roman town of Pompeii and it's no longer mythical citizens. It's a interesting concept with solid writing and good characters. There will be more books set within this world which I will read eventually. ...more
Marni Garland
Dec 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very cool take on a time travel/alternate reality story

I enjoyed it throughout. Part mystery, part sci-fi, part historical fiction, all fun. Good read! I am looking forward to the sequel.
Feb 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
All the comparisons to Michael Crichton's early novels are completely justified, however, the differences make this even better. It is not an easy story. Nothing is straight forward and the twists and turns will leave your brain leaking out your ears. There is a huge mystery to be solved, but it's not a 'who-done-it', more like a 'what-the-fuck-is-going-on' in the best possible way. It's the kind of story where the last few pages make you flip back and reread passages to understand what they rea ...more
Martin Belcher
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
New Pompeii is a fascinating novel, scifi, history, time travel and what if? Rolled all into one amazing story.
Novus Particles are a powerful energy corporation with endless amounts of money to spend on new projects, one of these projects unexpedectly discovers a way to 'pull living people' from events in the past and bring to the present or the future....
Bring in Nick Houghton a specialist in ancient Roman history who inadvertently brings himself to the attention of the CEO of NovusPart and so
Jan 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-sci-fi
Time-travel mystery set in a near-future with a tech company holding a monopoly on how to do it. There's a lot of public resistance to such an important discovery being held for private gain, but nothing seems to make any difference. A young, struggling doctoral student gets tangentially involved in an attempted protest action against the company and ends up getting hired to work on their project to build a New Pompeii and fill it with all the victims from the real one. They can snatch people wh ...more
Abi Harvey
Jun 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone,
I received a press release from Titan Books and as soon as I had read the blurb I knew I had to read New Pompeii, I knew nothing else about it. About a week and half before the publishing date I received my review copy.

Read more at:
Bill Lynas
Jul 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Daniel Godfrey delivers a fast paced & inventive story. He has a remarkable ability to make incredible situations believable. A terrific novel, full of intertesting characters & fascinating settings. I very much look forward to his next work.
Jun 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic read - I couldn't put it down. An original idea told in an exciting way. The historical background had real authenticity.
Can't wait for June 2017
John Anthamatten
May 23, 2017 rated it it was ok
Totally Confusing. I really like fantasy but just could not follow what was happening. Mr Godfrey probably knows the story he wanted to tell but was unable to do so in writing.
C.J. Bunce
Sep 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Originally published online at

In a thick 459 pages, British author Daniel Godfrey begins a new time travel series full of twists and turns in New Pompeii, his first novel from a major publisher (Titan Books). Billed as a novel in the tradition of Michael Crichton, New Pompeii is evocative of Crichton’s early novels, but more closely follows the plotting and style of the time travel science fiction novels of Connie Willis (Lincoln’s Dreams, To Say Nothing of the Dog) and the pacing of a
Laura Davis
May 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars.

This one was interesting. The blurb likens it to Jurassic Park, and I get the comparison. The inhabitants of Pompeii are transported to present day and there is a battle of wills between the ancient romans and those that "saved" them from the volcano. There are definitely echos of Jeff Goldblum's famous line about stopping to consider whether you should.

However, let me make this very clear. This book gets complicated. If youre hoping for Jurassic Park with romans put it down. Its them
Aug 05, 2017 rated it it was ok

The only reason I gave 'New Pompeii' two stars instead of one is because 'The Waking Land' was far worse and I condescended to give that two stars.

The 1st star was for the sheer attention to detail in Godfrey's book. The scenes that were set in
New Pompeii had an air of authenticity that impressed me. The bath house ordeal was unexpectedly brutal considering the rest of the novel but it convinced me even more so that Godfrey was going for historical accuracy.
The 2nd star was
May 23, 2017 rated it did not like it
Leather wristbands! Arrrgh!!! I should have been warned because this novel was praised as being "in the tradition of Michael Crichton" but I just couldn't resist the combination of ancient Rome and time travel. Well, this book is worse that I could have imagined - worse than anything my 14-year-old self would have written. Quite apart from the blatant historical mistakes the story in itself is utter nonsense. There is this uber-rich company that doesn't even do a google search and dumps modern v ...more
Eric  Overkamp
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Historian and not yet doctor Nick Houghton gets recruited by a mysterious energy company called Novus Particles in this thriller by Daniel Godfrey. Once recruited, he is flown to an undisclosed location where he is to help with the language and culture of the Romans in a replica town of Pompeii. The inhabitants have been pulled forward in time (right before Pompeii's complete destruction) without knowing that their world was about to be destroyed... NovusPart hopes to use this New Pompeii for tr ...more
The Idle Woman
Mar 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Any book which begins with a murder attempt at the British Museum is bound to catch my attention. Nick Houghton, a specialist in Roman history who’s struggling to find tenure at a university, is unwillingly caught up in the chaos. With one of his friends deeply implicated in the plot, he expects to be arrested; but instead the unthinkable happens. He is offered a job by the CEO of NovusPart, one of the most powerful and controversial companies in existence. For NovusPart has developed a technolo ...more
Lucy Saint-smith
Enjoyable read, but total rubbish

So this book is basically Jurassic Park with Romans instead of dinosaurs. A major corporation can move things forward in time, so they decide to bring the citizens of Pompeii into a replica of their town.
It was an enjoyable read, but there are several glaring problems with it. The first, from someone who is trained as an archaeologist, is why anyone would try to replicate Pompeii with a modern architect and a TV historian with no archaeological input. I would su
Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
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My first novel, New Pompeii, was included in both the Financial Times’ and Morning Star’s ‘Books of 2016’ lists. The sequel, Empire of Time, was published in June 2017. My near-future crime novel, The Synapse Sequence, was included in The Guardian’s June 2018 best recent science fiction round-up. I have also self-published a children’s e-book and written several short stories.

Shortlisted for Best

Other books in the series

New Pompeii (2 books)
  • Empire of Time (New Pompeii, #2)

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