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The Last of the Romans

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  237 ratings  ·  17 reviews

'The Story of Dux and his men pulled me in at once.' Peter Tonkin, author of The Ides

454 AD.

Northern Italy.

Dux Ambrosius Aurelianus has served the Roman Empire with distinction.

His bucellarii, a small band of irregular soldiers, have helped to bring a fragile peace to the beleaguered empire in the west. But, with the empire now at peace, his master, Flavius Aetius,

Kindle Edition, 251 pages
Published August 26th 2019 by Sharpe Books
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Derek Birks Glad you enjoyed it. The sequel will be out next year. Good question about Arthur! I don't intend to go into the whole Arthurian myth because I'll try…moreGlad you enjoyed it. The sequel will be out next year. Good question about Arthur! I don't intend to go into the whole Arthurian myth because I'll try to stick to what [little!] is known of Ambrosius, but it is possible there was an original "Arthur" of some description and I may well explore that possibility further down the line.(less)
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Average rating 4.02  · 
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 ·  237 ratings  ·  17 reviews

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Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
If you are used to Roman novels by Conn Iggulden, Ben Kane or S J A Turney, Derek Birks’ Last of the Romans will not disappoint. Ambrosius, the tantalisingly possible model for King Arthur, or at least his ancestor, is a favourite speculative idea. But Dux Ambrosius Aurelianus at the dusk of the Roman Empire is real in Birks’ novel; tough, uncompromising, persistent, yet under all that, caring and loyal. Not that it always does him any good…

Ambrosius, his lieutenant, Marcellus, and freed slave
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Rip-Roaring Roman Adventure

The early career of Ambrosius Aurelianus (described by Sixth Century scribe, Gildas, as ' the last of the Romans'), is imagined here by Derek Birks in this thrilling and well-researched novel. Ambrosius and his band of soldiers find themselves on the wrong side of a power struggle between Emperor and their commander, General Aetius. Following Aetius's murder, they embark on a perilous journey that finally reunites the heroic Ambrosius with his family - not all of
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Last of the Romans is a fantastic novel - fast-paced and a great 'quick' read, and I hope there is a book 2 because I want to know what happens next.

Dux or Ambrosius is not quite the 'typical' warrior, and Inga is an intriguing counterpart to him, and all of the bucellarii are given their own storylines which adds to the story building rather than just focusing on Ambrosius.

The author has a great 'light' touch and I'm really pleased that I came across the novel (on Twitter), as it kept me
Helen Hollick
Jan 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book has received a Discovering Diamonds Review:
Helen Hollick
founder #DDRevs

"The pace is strong, the enemies clever and allies uncertain. "
Richard Myers
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful book

This book is about a real historical character in his younger days before he showed up on the world stage. The travels and cities and roads were real during the 5th century AD. A great story with lots of action.
John Morris
Oct 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An exceptional tale!

This was a real page turner of a book. Enemies all around, who can you trust? Allies, not at all, family, even less. Just rely on your own, murderous experience and place your trust in whatever fate has in store. This book clearly describes the horrors experienced by the citizens of a dying empire, as they face a future of only death and destruction. Roman civilisation on its knees! What a story, highly recommended.
Andrew Walsh
Nov 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Meh it's ok

Good: Author clearly knows his stuff re the period and it all feels right
Iffy: Main characters able to single-handedly defeat loads of enemies, a bit like one of those films where the hero beats up hordes of baddies who queue up and take it in turns to be defeated
Overall a pretty good read though
Victor S Southern
Nov 04, 2019 rated it did not like it
I have read a lot of historical fiction of the Roman era, some excellent. some fair, many of the entertaining. This book does not meet any reasonable criteria. It is written with a paucity of plot, just a goody and a baddy (or two) and the most implausible and futile actions by the protagonist and his associates.

After about 30 pages I had to give up.
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Action packed from start to finish.

Very good read. I like the period and to be fair didn't really expect too much. How to was more than pleasantly surprised. I would highly recommend this book.
John E
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Rather fantastic and sometimes monotonous account. The hero seems to be immortal and can take on multiple enemies at once, incur many wounds, and still survive. Endless series of battles, very little character development.
patrick t. patterson
Nov 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Action packed of fall of western roman empire

An action packed story hard to follow once the final geographic spot is reached but the characters are interesting and the plausible vague historical situation is also of interest I would recommend this novel

Cathy Delamotte
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
More, more please

This book is well written with an authentic Roman military flavor. The characters are fully developed . Plot moves fast with surprises along the way. When will the next book be out, I have questions that need answered.

Jan 03, 2020 rated it liked it
Decent yarn

It's a comparative rating, an enjoyable jaunt, but not up to Iggledon or Follett..
A decent effort, an easy read..
Mr Bill Dunn
Nov 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Good read

Enjoyed the story, characters became easy to follow quite quickly, plenty of twists and turns, author did a great job, thank you
Nov 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this story!

Is there another book that continues the story of Dux and his men (and woman) in Britain? I want it!
Kim Scott Heinle
Dec 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Cruel Love

From start to end, a wild, bloody ride, with a band of Roman soldiers suddenly expelled from service and facing enemies in all directions.
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Oct 15, 2019
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I was born in Hampshire in England but spent my teenage years in Auckland, New Zealand where I still have strong family ties. I came back to England and read History at Reading University. For many years I taught history in a secondary school in Berkshire but took early retirement several years ago to concentrate on my writing.

My debut book, Feud, is set in the Wars of the Roses and is fast paced