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Conspirata: A Novel of Ancient Rome (Cicero #2)

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4.13  ·  Rating Details ·  7,811 Ratings  ·  616 Reviews
Conspirata is "a portrait of ancient politics as a blood sport," raves the New York Times. As he did with Imperium, Robert Harris again turns Roman history into a gripping thriller as Cicero faces a new power struggle in a world filled with treachery, violence, and vengeance.

On the eve of Cicero's inauguration as consul of Rome, a grisly discovery sends fear rippling thro
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Paperback, 376 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Gallery Books (first published November 2009)
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Dhanvanthari Manjunath Dont have much to add to what others have said,If you are in to historical and political fiction this is a great read, does not have a lot of "action"…moreDont have much to add to what others have said,If you are in to historical and political fiction this is a great read, does not have a lot of "action" but definitely page turner.(less)
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Kalliope
Aug 21, 2012 Kalliope rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is the second volume of the Cicero trilogy. The first is Imperium and the third has not been published yet. The title of Lustrum used for the UK market refers to the five years in Cicero’s life from the moment Cicero became Consul (63-58BC). In the US it has been published as Conspirata. The choice of titles for either side of the Atlantic invites speculation.

Lustrum presents a different Cicero from the one we saw in the first volume. In Imperium we could witness the orator’s climb thr
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Kemper
Mar 27, 2010 Kemper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a story of a gifted orator who is legally elected to lead his country during a time of great crisis, but faces incredible opposition from powerful people who use a variety of dirty tricks and propaganda techniques to enrage mobs of stupid people to subvert the law and government so they can seize power for themselves.

Oh, and it’s set in ancient Rome. I wonder why it seems so familiar today?

Robert Harris second novel about Cicero uses Roman intrigue and power plays as the back drop for
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Jeanette
Feb 16, 2017 Jeanette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This certainly has the correct title. Conspirata! Yes, in every sense. This is the second book of a trilogy upon Cicero's life and legend. Here he is risen to a commanding peak of influence, has his first year as Consul and "saves the Republic" several times. And he does just that, it's not an exaggeration. Because there are personalities rising and conspiring to make the Republic stray far from the Senate and Citizen voting as prescribed by the Roman Constitution. Catalina first and then a trio ...more
Ethan Casey
Once upon a time, novelists could be simultaneously serious and popular. Hemingway comes to mind, but even moreso Steinbeck, who had less literary pretension and more sustained and pointed topical engagement. Graham Greene aimed at once for contemporary relevance and durability, and more often than not hit the bull's-eye with later novels such as The Quiet American, The Comedians, and The Human Factor. Lesser, or at least less remembered, writers such as Morris West and Nevil Shute took seriousl ...more
Jon
May 11, 2010 Jon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is by far Robert Harris' best novel about ancient Rome so far. Like it's predecessors it is scrupulously accurate, but unlike them, it is also genuinely exciting, with vivid scenes and living, believable characters. This one shows the great orator Cicero at the highest and then the lowest points of his career--first the defeat of Catiline's conspiracy with Cicero given the great honor of being named "pater patriae"--then just a few years later his being driven into exile by his political en ...more
Colleen
May 29, 2010 Colleen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: whodunnit
Well I was very excited to see this book and that Imperium was not meant to be standalone and is instead first in a series (going to guess that there might be one or most likely two more books left to go), since my main complaint with Imperium was that I wanted more. It took me a while to get into this one, the sequel, which is unusual for me when it comes to Robert Harris.

Not sure what it was that mildly irked me--I think he was taking steps to humanize Tiro more and make him a character than
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Elizabeth Theiss
May 17, 2014 Elizabeth Theiss rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel, roman
A fictional account of Cicero's consulship and the years until his forced departure from Rome, written by his longtime slave and secretary, Tiro, Harris has again written a stupendous account of insider politics in the Senate. Tiro's narrative voice is generous but unsparing, exposing Cicero's greatness and pettiness.

It is hard not to draw parallels with contemporary politics, as populism is exploited; money of the wealthy buys election victories; and handsome men of dubious morals manipulate c
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Mark O'Neill
This is the second part of an epic trilogy about Marcus Tullius Cicero, the famous Roman politician, lawyer and orator, as depicted by his secretary and servant Tiro. The first part, Imperium, dealt with Cicero's rise to power. This second part deals with his year as Rome Consul (basically Prime Minister of all Rome). The third part....well who knows? But I am guessing part three will all be about revenge.[return][return]As previously said, this book is a fictional account of what Tiro might hav ...more
Lucardus
Sep 15, 2016 Lucardus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Abgesehen von einem Satz, das "Volk möge zum Teufel gehen" und einer Bemerkung, dass einer von Ciceros Gegenspielern immer einen "Geruch nach Schwefel" hinterlässt, ist mir weit weniger an Anachronismen aufgefallen als im ersten Band. Und ich bin nicht 100%ig sicher, ob das Konzept des Teufels und des damit einhergehenden Schwefelgeruchs nicht doch irgendeine antike Quelle hat, wenn auch der Begriff Teufel im antiken Rom sicher nicht im Sprachgebrauch war.

"Titan" liest sich weg wie Nichts, ist h
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Kenny Bellew
May 23, 2016 Kenny Bellew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the 3rd Robert Harris Historical Fiction I've read, and I'm becoming a huge fan. This book is rated 4.10 / 5.0 on GoodReads and is 464 pages.

You don't have to enjoy history to love this book. The story pulls its own weight. That's what I enjoy about Harris' writing.

This covers a time period of around 63BCE, when Cicero was Consul of Rome. This story is about the struggle of Cicero dealing with the triumvirate of Caesar, general Pompey and the super-rich Crassus. I'm not sure it's techni
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Kyle
Mar 21, 2011 Kyle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've often wondered why in Shakespeare's only play to feature Cicero as a character, Julius Caesar, he has a mute part, and the audience only finds out that he gave a speech in Greek, was not chosen as part of the conspiracy against Caesar, and then is proscribed dead. Strange way to represent one of history's most famous orators, one whose words and writing, according to Wikipedia, initiated the 14th century Renaissance. Robert Harris' second novel to delve into the his life and last sputtering ...more
Thom
Jan 01, 2013 Thom rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-series
The first volume (Imperium: A Novel of Ancient Rome) dealt with the rise of a hungry Cicero, whose wit and legal tactics impelled him to the office of Consul. This novel deals with the aftermath - death threats and a conspiracy while in office, the rise of Caesar and the founding of the Triumvirate. This Cicero has his power nibbled away and rests on his laurels for a bit too long while the Roman Republic crumbles around him. The story ends with the flight into exile.

The first two volumes make u
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Lemar
Excellent sequel to Imperium which I also loved. Robert Harris employs his gift as a story teller to write history the way it should be written, as a moment to moment series of decisions, mistakes and triumphs with an uncertain future. Cicero emerges as the giant of history that he is for all the right reasons in these books. Harris understands that the man who does the brave thing despite his nervousness is more heroic than the man (Caesar are you getting this?) who does the brave thing out of ...more
Liviu
reread as Dictator, the final Cicero novel has just been out and I wanted to get back in the flow of this series - I looked also through the first book, but like at the time I read it first, I wasn't that impressed as that one is a bit disjointed, but Conspirata (or Lustrum) was superb on this reread too so my original review below stands

(original review June 2010)
Excellent sequel to Imperium; the focus on the year of Cicero's Consulship and then the focus on the relationship with Clodius from
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Mike
Mar 22, 2016 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read the third of this trilogy first, as it happened, so it confused the history of how things run when I came back to read books one and two. Never mind. It was good to already be aware that Julius Caesar eventually gets his comeuppance in the third book, even if it didn't seem likely in the second.
As with the other two in the series this is a great read, whether you enjoy politics in history or not. The characters are vividly portrayed, and the events, both the factual ones and the fictiona
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Olethros
-En política, sobre todo en la trastienda, pocas cosas cambian con el tiempo.-

Género. Novela histórica.

Lo que nos cuenta. Ficción sobre la peculiar personalidad de Marco Tulio Cicerón y cuánto marco ésta, además de los acontecimientos ajenos a él, su mandato como cónsul en la Antigua Roma y los derroteros que tomó su vida política. Segundo libro de la trilogía Cicerón, cuyos volúmenes pueden leerse de forma totalmente independiente.

¿Quiere saber más de este libro, sin spoilers? Visite:

http://lib
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Alisea
Jan 27, 2016 Alisea rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Secondo libro della trilogia dedicata a Cicerone.
Ottimo romanzo storico, ottime le doti narrative dell'autore. La storia, narrata dallo schiavo Tirone, si dipana in modo scorrevole e avvincente riportando i fatti storici con incredibile ricchezza di dettagli frutto di accurate ricerche.
Non sfugge un certo parallelismo con la situazione politica odierna: oggi come allora compromessi, alleanze improbabili, interessi personali, sete di potere, complotti e scandali rendono difficile il lavoro di chi
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Oscarmurphy1mk
Oct 08, 2016 Oscarmurphy1mk rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very entertaining. I loved Cicero's speeches, and all the scheming going on behind everyone's backs. Starts explaining Ceasers rise to power which is very interesting. I learnt so much about the Romans reading this trilogy. I would recommend this book to anyone.
Glenys
Apr 12, 2014 Glenys rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Superb political thriller about Cicero in Ancient Rome, written with Harris's trademark skill, combining a really good read with impeccable historical research. I am left wanting to read some of Cicero's speeches and to find out what happened after his exile.
Lillian White
Jan 24, 2017 Lillian White rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very pleased to see that Robert Harris continued the ongoing story of Cicero and Tiro in the same fashion as he began it with Imperium. I have thoroughly enjoyed both of these books, Harris has a real knack of enabling the reader to get to know his characters and to empathise with them. That these big historical events actually occurred and that these people were real and existed only serves to heighten my fascination. Just as in Imperium, I was once again left with the impression that you could ...more
Faith Justice
Jan 11, 2017 Faith Justice rated it really liked it
Harris hits another one out of the park with Conspirata. I've read a number of fiction and non-fiction books about this time frame and these characters. It's fascinating to see where people come down on who's the villain and who's the hero. Of the whole cast of characters, only two stand out for me as having some sort of moral compass: Cicero and Cato. Although Cicero did not flinch from back-dealing and the occasional political dirty trick, he seemed to have a sense of himself and what lines he ...more
Kara
Feb 02, 2017 Kara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history-ancient, rome

Reading about the legal catastrophe that overtook the Roman Republic as Caesar and then Octavius turned it into an empire is strangely reassuring today.

All of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again – and, you know what, we’re still here, still trying to preserve the rule of law, still hammering away at the ideals v. realities debate, and still wondering if tomorrow is going to be the end of the world.

And still we are here.
Pachy Tarari
Feb 19, 2017 Pachy Tarari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own, 2017
Segunda entrega de la trilogía de Cicerón. Se centra en la conspiración de Catilina y finaliza con las consecuencias que tuvo para Cicerón. Me ha parecido, además de interesantísimo, muy emocionante, tanto que en cuanto lo acabé, cogí el siguiente!
Luana
Nov 06, 2016 Luana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Conspirata" è il secondo libro nella trilogia dedicata alla figura di Marco Tullio Cicerone: questa volta, sempre guidati dal racconto del fido Tirone (segretario e braccio destro del senatore), ripercorriamo i cinque anni che forse hanno segnato maggiormente la vita del protagonista, dall'inizio del suo incarico di console fino all'esilio.
Come suggerisce il titolo, uno degli eventi che domina la prima metà del libro è sicuramente la congiura di Catilina: questo segna il punto più alto della ca
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Elly
Apr 28, 2016 Elly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Blair
The second in Robert Harris's trilogy about the life of famed Roman orator Cicero, this picks up almost immediately after the final events of Imperium. The story is once again narrated by Cicero's secretary Tiro, and opens with Cicero enjoying an elevated social and political status as consul. This book covers five years in his career, hence the title; 'lustrum' was a Roman term for a five-year period, and this one is particularly significant since it encompasses both the dazzling highs and the ...more
Darkfienix
Apr 08, 2013 Darkfienix rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Last summer I read Imperium by Robert Harris and found it an enjoyable, high quality offering. Therefore I was looking forward to the author’s second book covering the career heights, and subsequent fall from grace, of one of Rome’s most talented orators, Marcus Tullius Cicero.

The novel follows loosely on from Imperium but it isn’t necessary to have read this first. Lustrum can be read as a stand alone novel. The story starts where Imperium finished, with Cicero having been elected consul.

Writte
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Thermalsatsuma
Aug 02, 2010 Thermalsatsuma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
A lustrum is simply a period of five years - an important division of time in the Rome of the old Republic where terms of political office and governorships were strictly measured out with military precision. Confusingly enough the book was renamed as 'Conspirata' for the US market, which does not have quite the same resonance.

This book follows on almost directly from 'Imperium' with Marcus Tullius Cicero taking up his role as Roman Consol. He faces the ill omen of a brutally murdered slave bei
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Gerald Sinstadt
Like an archaeologist on a promising dig, Robert Harris returns to Rome in the first Century BC. He points out that although he seeks to make the fiction accord with the facts, and uses the words spoken by Cicero as recorded by his amanuensis, this is ultimately a novel. By that criterion, he is only partially successful.

The facts dictate that characters drift in and out of the story, but fiction that grips demands a less episodic narrative. Cicero and his slave, Tiro (the book's narrator) carry
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Fanda Kutubuku
Oct 03, 2011 Fanda Kutubuku rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-shelf, favorites
Kalau seri pertama kisah Cicero (Imperium) lebih fokus ke perjuangan Cicero hingga mencapai tempat btertinggi yang diimpikannya, Conspirata ini justru lebih banyak menguak karakter para tokoh di dalam kisah ini, termasuk juga Cicero. Terus terang saja, Conspirata jauh lebih emosional daripada Imperium, dan bab akhirnya sungguh menguras air mataku!

Masih bertema gonjang-ganjing politik republik Romawi Kuno di saat-saat akhir, sebelum menjadi kekaisaran yang diktator. Cicero kini menjadi konsul Rom
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ROBERT HARRIS is the author of nine best-selling novels: Fatherland, Enigma, Archangel, Pompeii, Imperium, The Ghost Writer, Conspirata, The Fear Index, and An Officer and a Spy. Several of his books have been adapted to film, most recently The Ghost Writer, directed by Roman Polanski. His work has been translated into thirty-seven languages. He lives in the village of Kintbury, England, with his ...more
More about Robert Harris...

Other Books in the Series

Cicero (3 books)
  • Imperium: A Novel of Ancient Rome (Cicero, #1)
  • Dictator (Cicero, #3)

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“Surely the greatest mercy granted us by Providence is our ignorance of the future. Imagine if we knew the outcome of our hopes and plans, or could see the manner in which we are doomed to die - how ruined our lives would be! Instead we live on dumbly from day to day as happily as animals. But all things must come to dust eventually. No human being, no system, no age is impervious to this law; everything beneath the stars will perish; the hardest rock will be worn away. Nothing endures but words.” 7 likes
“any rash fool can be a hero if he sets no value on his life, or hasn't the wit to appreciate danger. But to understand the risk, perhaps even to flinch at first, but then to summon the strength to face them down - that in my opinion is the most commendable form of valour” 4 likes
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