Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Fight for Freedom (Gladiator, #1)” as Want to Read:
Fight for Freedom (Gladiator, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Fight for Freedom

(Gladiator #1)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  1,171 ratings  ·  108 reviews
It's Rome, 61 BC. Recruited as a gladiator, young Marcus Cornelius Primus faces a new life of brutal training, governed by strict rules, as he learns the skills of an elite warrior. But Marcus cannot simply forget his past. His father lies murdered by soldiers and his mother has been kidnapped and forced into slavery. Marcus is determined to find his father's old commander ...more
Hardcover, 330 pages
Published February 3rd 2011 by Puffin Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Fight for Freedom, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Fight for Freedom

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.96  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,171 ratings  ·  108 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Oct 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites

Surprisingly good!

I've always been intrigued by gladiators and the story of Spartacus, so when I saw this YA series I thought I'd give it a read just out of curiosity. Wow! Am I happy I did.

The story surrounds Marcus a ten-year-old Roman who lives with his mother and father, a retired Centurion, on a remote farm. The description of the book says Marcus was "recruited" as a gladiator. It's a much sadder story than that. Seriously, considering they were all slaves, was anyone actually "recruited"

Jason Golomb
Simon Scarrow expands his literary (Roman) empire into the realm of children's books, with the first in a new series: "Fight for Freedom".

Scarrow is most well-known for his action adventure "Eagle" series which focuses on a pair of Roman Legionaries fighting the good fight for the Emperor during the early years of the first century. With "Fight for Freedom", he steps back a century back in time, centering around the years following the Spartacus rebellion. A young boy's father is killed, and he
Kiki van Dijk
Jul 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
For a long time, I have been interested in historical fiction, and ancient Rome has a special place in my heart when it comes to interests. This is the first volume of a new series about Marcus Cornelius Primus. As the book opens, Marcus' father Titus Cornelius Pollenius is on the battlefield fighting in the conclusion to the Spartarcus wars. The rebelling slaves have all but lost. Just at the conclusion of the battle, Titus saves the leading General Pompeius from an attack by one of the slaves ...more
Jan 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Marcus Cornelius Primus is the son of a Roman Centurian. With the first ten years of his life spent on his family's farm in Greece, Marcus' life is suddenly turned upside down when his father is killed and he and his mother are taken as slaves. Marcus is then sold to a Gladiator trainer where he learns to fight whilst all the time contemplating his escape and how he can find and free his mother. He sets his sights on somehow making it to Rome to find General Pompeius, who's life his father once ...more
Ben Jeffery
Feb 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
1.I decided to read 'Fight for Freedom by Simon Scarrow because I enjoy learning about ancient Greece and so since Rome is Right next to Greece I decided to read this book. i also had a read of the blurb and saw that his father was murdered as a centurion which high rank in the Roman Military so i wanted to find out more.

2.One of the Characters I found interesting in 'Fight for Freedom' was Marcus Cornelius Primus because at the start his father was confronted be a tax collector's thug and so ma
Anish Bhardwaj
Jan 10, 2015 rated it liked it
This book was a great history story. It was a great fun,historical and enjoyable read. This book takes place in Rome 61BC ago.Plot: When 10 year old Marcus Cornelius Primus the main character his father dies. Him and his Mom get sold to slavery while Marcus Cornelius Primus a gladiator training school south of Rome.As he learns the ways of how to be a gladiator and survive.

Characters: Commander Pompeius,Marcus Cornelius Primus, Mom,Dad,Soldiers of Rome

The Genre of the book is young adult fiction
3.5 stars

Big warning about spoilers: Don't look at the titles of the rest of the series before you finish this book or you'll be able to guess the big reveal at the end very easily. It is predictable anyway, but still.

This is the kind of book that would have been much more believable if Marcus, the main character, had been two years older. His age works at first, because he still has a lot of childhood innocence and believes that people will believe him if he tells the truth and that people will
Mar 09, 2016 rated it it was ok
This book had everything but something new. The same old story.......... Someone makes the MC's life a living hell (bonus points if this someone kills the MC's family as well!). MC swears revenge against the aforementioned someone. Then throw in a lot of complications (bullies, starvation, poverty, life-and-death situations. In short, all tragedies imaginable!). And BAM! There's the ultimate plot twist............ Sadly, not even the plot twist here surprised me. All I had as a reaction was "Oka ...more
Mar 09, 2016 rated it liked it
This was a weird one. I liked the storyline enough though I couldn't possibly believe that the MC was a 10 year old kid. The way he spoke seemed more fit for a grown adult than a fumbling kid not even hit by puberty yet. I didn't love this story but it also wasn't completely dreadful.

The whole book was interesting enough that I wanted to know how this first book would end though I don't think I'll want to continue with the rest of the series.
May 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Enjoyable read. Lots of information on the Slave Revolt, slaves in that period and gladiator training
Isabelle Ley
Mar 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
That was dumb. I rolled my eyes so many times I'm surprised that they didn't fall out of my head. Needless to say, I will not be continuing on with this series.
Mohammed Chen
Oct 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
A really enjoyable and interesting book!

The book "Gladiator: Fight for Freedom" was written by the author Simon Scarrow, and it narrates the life story of Marcus Cornelius Primus a 10-year-old kid who lived his life in sorrow, guilt, agony, and pain. Marcus sets a goal to avenge his father's death after his father has been slain and to rescue his mother from slavery as seen on (P. 74) "If Marcus was caught, then it would all have been for nothing, and he and his mother would be condemned to the
Rock Pirih
Jul 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
An intriguing story, filled with references to the ancient Roman Empire, which is shown in a form of the life of gladiators.
The setting is very likely and the narration is so good written, that holds the reader next to the book, not letting him go, until he finished the whole book.
The story itself sticks very keen to it's boundaries with the ancient Roman Empire timeline.
Would recommend it to anyone who is interested in the life of a gladiator and in ancient Roman history.
Feb 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a very good book for any person who is into action filled books. This book is pact with suspense, action, adventure, and a lot of perseverance. I would say a good job to Simon Scarrow on this book. This is a good easy read but long enough to take on a long car trip or a wait at the airport. :)
i quite liked the book but the end was disappointing. as soon as Marcus learns he's Spartacus' son he decides he doesn't need to avenge death of the man he was brought up by. mother branding her child, secret union, 11 year old boy chosen as a bodyguard, the girl in distress...such things really spoiled the impression. and as I read about next books I guess Marcus will irritate me much.
Anne-Elise Schoon
Sep 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book was 2,5 stars for me, some scenes were nicely written, but most of the time it was just a little boring. There are some nice elements in the plot, but overall it was a bit dissapointing for me. (Sorry!)
May 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
really good story that throws you into the action but not from the start.
Vern Collins
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Read it in half a day. A really good read. Il be getting the next one in line "street fighter" as soon as poss
May 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook
I want to
May 28, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
So many typos. In this day in age it is inexcusable
Jan 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this one. With my students about to start a study of Ancient Rome, it should be an easy sell.
Wayne Walker
Jul 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ten year old Marcus Cornelius Primus lives an idyllic farm life with his father, Titus Cornelius, a retired centurion who had served in the Roman army under General Pompeius during the slave rebellion led by Spartacus (c. 73-71 B.C.), and his mother Livia, a former slave whom Titus had captured, freed, and married, on the Greek isle of Leucas near the town of Nydri. However, times have become hard, and Titus owes a large sum of money to an unscrupulous man named Decimus who sends his thugs to ki ...more
Robin Carter
May 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Product Description (From back of book)

Rome, 61 BC RECRUITED as a gladiator, young Marcus Cornelius Primus faces a new life of brutal training, governed by strict rules, as he learns the skills of an elite warrior. But Marcus cannot simply forget his past. His father lies murdered by soldiers and his mother has been kidnapped and forced into slavery. Marcus is determined to find his father's old commander, Pompeius the Great, to seek justice for his family and set his mother free. Yet, unbeknown
Ms. Yingling
Feb 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Release date 24 April 2012, which shows SERIOUS bad planning. Why not 21 April, the anniversary of the founding of Rome?

Marcus has a good life on his father's Roman farm until his father refuses to repay a loan and beats up the goons sent by the debt collector, Decimus. Decimus later retaliates by having Marcus' father, a former Centurion, killed, and Marcus and his mother enslaved. Marcus manages to escape being sent to a remote farm with his mother, but after he stows away on a ship in order t
Michelle (Fluttering Butterflies)
A big thank you to the people at Penguin for sending me this book for review! When I first saw the book, I immediately thought 'oooh, there's something I haven't seen much of in YA' and I like when that happens. I like when things are new and different. And Gladiator, this first book for children by Simon Scarrow, is quite a fun read. With it's action scenes and violence and gladiator training, this is one sure to attract boys, but I found myself really gripped by the story and the characters as ...more
Mohd Afiq
Nov 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the first book from the new Gladiator series by Simon Scarrow. If you are familiar with the word gladiator, then you will get the idea that the story is set during the Ancient Roman Empire.

The novel is basically about a young boy named Marcus Cornelius Primus. His family is thrown into hell [well, hypothetically speaking] – his father, a former centurion named Titus, is killed, while his mother, Livia, after a failed plan to get away from their captor is turned into a slave in a winery s
John Salter
Oct 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I must admit that I was a bit uncertain as to whether this would suitable for adults and upto the usual Simon Scarrow standards because the book is aimed at the young adult market. However, having the read the book from cover to cover over two days my fears were soon gone.

The book centers around Marcus Primus in 61BC, a ten year old boy, the son of a retired Centurion Titus Primus, who during his time in the Roman army helped to crush the Spartacus slave rebellion. The story begins with Titus an
Lady Knight
First of all, the dedication reads: "For Rosemary Sutcliff who has inspired so many of us to love history". How awesome is that?!

Secondly, it was a real pleasure to come across an author who really did evoke Rosemary Sutcliff for me. Not only the setting of Ancient Roman times, but the way characters are depicted, the social classes they come from, and most importantly the way this was written definitely mimics Sutcliff's work. I loved it! I fully intend to check out more of Simon Scarrow's work
Matilda Rose
10 year old Marcus lives in Rome with his mum Livia, his dad Titus, his dog Cerberus, and their slave. When the tax collector sends armed soldiers to their door because they haven't paid the tax, Marcus, Cerberus and Titus try to hold them off. Unfortunately, the small army is too strong, and they murder Titus. Marcus and his mother are sold into slavery. Marcus is sold as a young gladiator, and his mother is sold to work on the tax collector Decimus's slave estate.

Marcus is determined to win hi
« previous 1 3 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Review 1 2 Mar 15, 2016 10:57AM  
Is there a movie for this book? 1 2 Sep 18, 2014 11:46AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Claudius (Rufus, #2)
  • Viking Warrior (The Strongbow Saga, #1)
  • Spartacus: The Gladiator (Spartacus, #1)
  • David
  • Rome: The Coming of the King (Rome, #2)
  • Allt jag säger är sant
  • The Leopard Sword (Empire, #4)
  • Crusade
  • Dark Parallel (The Joshua Files, #4)
  • A Beautiful Lie
  • Gladiatrix (Gladiatrix, #1)
  • The Amber Road (Warrior of Rome, #6)
  • The Legend of Lady Ilena (Lady Ilena, #1)
  • Zombie Dawn (Changeling, #5)
  • Rome's Fallen Eagle (Vespasian, #4)
  • The Roman
  • The Doomsday Code (TimeRiders, #3)
See similar books…
Simon Scarrow is a UK-based author, born in Nigeria, and now living in Norfolk. He completed a master's degree at the University of East Anglia, and, after working at the Inland Revenue, went into teaching as a lecturer at City College, Norwich.

He is best known for his "Eagle" series. This is Roman empire military fiction, starting with the second invasion of Britain, and continuing with subsequen

Other books in the series

Gladiator (4 books)
  • Street Fighter (Gladiator, #2)
  • Son of Spartacus (Gladiator, #3)
  • Vengeance (Gladiator, #4)