Historical Fictionistas discussion

592 views
HF Book Lists > Roman Historical fiction

Comments Showing 1-50 of 131 (131 new)    post a comment »
« previous 1 3

message 1: by David (new)

David Alan | 4 comments I would like to put together a list of the best 100 Roman oriented historical fiction books.


message 2: by Heather (new)

Heather | 15 comments My favorite is actually a series for upper elementary/middle grades.
The Thieves of Ostia is the first book in the series. The whole series was entertaining and educational.


message 3: by Rebecca (new)

Rebecca Huston (telynor) | 29 comments All of Colleen McCullough's Masters of Rome series would work well. So too do Robert Harris' Roman novels.


message 4: by Zoe (new)

Zoe Saadia (zoesaadia) Rebecca wrote: "All of Colleen McCullough's Masters of Rome series would work well. So too do Robert Harris' Roman novels."

I join both the above recommendations. Both McCullough and Harris, in my opinion, did a wonderful job recreating Republican Rome :-)
Also I would love to add Robert Graves with both I, Claudius and Claudius the God and His Wife Messalina into the pile of great historical fiction on Rome :)


message 6: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments I'm with Zoe about on the Claudius books. They are great.

Now, he's sort of all over the Empire but Simon Scarrow's 'Roman Series' is an enjoyable look at the Legion and many of the personalities that defended the Empire from Briton to the Parthian frontier.


message 7: by L.E. (new)

L.E. | 5 comments Lindsey Davis Falco novels and The Course of Honour. The Conspiracy by John Hersey. Domonic by Kathleen Robinson. Caroline Lawrence's Roman mysteries. Memoirs of Hadrian by Yourcenar and Robert Graves's Claudius novels


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 387 comments My favorite Roman ones:

I, Claudius and Claudius the God and His Wife Messalina, by Robert Graves

The Masters of Rome series, from The First Man in Rome to Antony and Cleopatra, by Colleen McCullough

The Course of Honor, by Lyndsey Davis

Roma: The Novel of Ancient Rome, by Steven Saylor


message 9: by Pauline (new)

Pauline Montagna (pauline_montagna) L.E. wrote: "Lindsey Davis Falco novels and The Course of Honour. The Conspiracy by John Hersey. Domonic by Kathleen Robinson. Caroline Lawrence's Roman mysteries. Memoirs of Hadrian by Yourcenar and Robert Gra..."

I'll add my endorsement of the Falco novels - the most enjoyable way of learning about Imperial Rome I've ever come across!


message 10: by Maggie (last edited Jan 03, 2013 05:07PM) (new)

Maggie Anton | 210 comments I also recommend Harry Sidebottom's "Warrior of Rome" series, my favorite being Lion Of The Sun.

And of course, one of the greatest of all, Julian by the master historical novelist, Gore Vidal.

Maggie Anton


message 11: by Gary (new)

Gary Inbinder | 155 comments I think Robert Graves' I Claudius Series is essential. I, ClaudiusI'd add Conn Iggulden's Emperor Series. The Death of Kings

And I recently read and reviewed Elisabeth Storrs' The Wedding Shroud, which is of particular interest because of its insight into Etruscan culture.The Wedding Shroud


message 12: by Ann (new)

Ann Chamberlin | 25 comments I agree with L.E. about the Lindsey Davis mysteries: fun, light-hearted, full of subtle commentary on modern British life (if you count that). That's off the sweets trolley.

And I second Maggie's suggestion, that Julian should be there, although I agree with the NYT obit that most of Vidal's characters were just copies of himself in historical drag. Still, yes, he should be there--for the veggies.


message 13: by Donna (new)

Donna Callea Lindsey Davis's Falco mysteries are among my favorites. But I also love Medicus by Ruth Downie and its sequels.


message 14: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisathebooklover) I agree with Imperium but I also really enjoyed Pompeii, a really great read. Mistress Of Rome was pretty good too


message 15: by David (new)

David Alan | 4 comments Thanks for all of the responses lets keep the lost growing.


message 16: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Lafferty The Venus Throw by Steven Saylor is very good.


message 18: by Donna (new)

Donna Thorland Just realized no one added Spartacus by Howard Fast. The little pop-up function won't link it so here it is: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/93...


message 19: by Yangsze (new)

Yangsze Choo | 47 comments Donna wrote: "I'd add The Eagle Of The Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff The Eagle Of The Ninth byRosemary Sutcliff."

Yes, loved that book when I first read it as a child!


message 20: by Sarah Louise (new)

Sarah Louise (keytan) I need a little help. I'm trying to find another book with a female protagonist. Any recs welcome, i'm just sick of reading about dudes at war.


message 21: by Donna (new)

Donna Callea The Course of Honor The Course of Honor by Lindsey Davis

Sarah Louise,
This is one of my favorite Lindsey Davis novels. It's not part of the Falco series and has a great female protagonist. I'm like you, I'd rather not read about dudes at war.

Donna


message 22: by Gary (new)

Gary Inbinder | 155 comments Sarah Louise wrote: "I need a little help. I'm trying to find another book with a female protagonist. Any recs welcome, i'm just sick of reading about dudes at war."

You might like Elisabeth Storrs' The Wedding Shroud.
The Wedding Shroud


message 23: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments Sarah Louise wrote: "I need a little help. I'm trying to find another book with a female protagonist. Any recs welcome, i'm just sick of reading about dudes at war."

That's going to be tough. Rome was seldom at peace and many Roman women managed to factor strongly in what was going on in Roman politics which very often emeshed with Roman conflict.

You could write the book you'd like to read. It seems like their is an audience for it here at GR's Historical Fictionistas.


message 24: by Bryn (new)

Bryn Hammond (brynhammond) | 265 comments Or you can read about Rome's enemies, with The Light Bearer or the well-known Boudica books Dreaming the Eagle. But these are women in battle: perhaps you don't want battle.


message 25: by happy (last edited Apr 17, 2013 12:28AM) (new)

happy (happyone) | 40 comments A few of authors whose work I've enjoyed

Robert Harris (books mentioned, but not the author)

Pompeii by Robert Harris
Imperium (Cicero, #1) by Robert Harris
Lustrum (Cicero, #2) by Robert Harris

Michael Curtis Ford

The Sword of Attila A Novel of the Last Years of Rome by Michael Curtis Ford
Gods and Legions A Novel of the Roman Empire by Michael Curtis Ford
The Last King Rome's Greatest Enemy by Michael Curtis Ford

William Dietrich

Hadrian's Wall by William Dietrich
The Scourge of God by William Dietrich


message 26: by Lisa (last edited Apr 17, 2013 06:04AM) (new)

Lisa | 7 comments The Last Legion by Valerio Massimo Manfredi
The Last Legion by Valerio Massimo Manfredi

Eagle in the Snow by Wallace Breem
Eagle in the Snow by Wallace Breem


message 27: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 7 comments Bryn wrote: "Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar"

This is probably my all time favorite historical fiction novel.


message 28: by [deleted user] (new)

A Roman Ransom is part of a series, I enjoyed it.


message 29: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 7 comments Just thought of one more:
Augustus (Emperors, #2) by Allan Massie

This is the first in Allan Massie's "Emperors" series.


message 30: by Sarah Louise (new)

Sarah Louise (keytan) wicked you guys, keep the recs coming. I've been at a loss of what books to get into. Right now i'm reading Lavinia and to be honest, i'm not really enjoying it.
I'm thinking of reading Steven Saylor Roma.
I put holds on all the books I could find at my local library. So excited to read more.


message 31: by Jackie (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) | 2227 comments Sarah Louise wrote: "wicked you guys, keep the recs coming. I've been at a loss of what books to get into. Right now i'm reading Lavinia and to be honest, i'm not really enjoying it.
I'm thinking of reading Steven Say..."


Are looking for the book to solely take place in Rome?
If not, you might want to try When We Were Gods: A Novel of Cleopatra. A good portion of the book takes place in Rome and deals with Roman politics.


message 32: by Gary (new)

Gary Inbinder | 155 comments Sarah Louise wrote: "wicked you guys, keep the recs coming. I've been at a loss of what books to get into. Right now i'm reading Lavinia and to be honest, i'm not really enjoying it.
I'm thinking of reading Steven Say..."


Another thought. You might like Kate Quinn's novels.





Mistress of RomeDaughters of Rome


message 33: by Kate (new)

Kate Quinn | 542 comments Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why mine are mostly female-narrated.


message 34: by Sarah Louise (new)

Sarah Louise (keytan) Kate, I LOVE your books. They took me no time to finish.

One rec I have is Julia, Daughter of Rome. I just finished it and I really liked it. It takes place over about 40 years and on GR is says it's 500 and something pages but really it's only 250ish.

I also thought i'd give Tiberius. MAN OH MAN he's a grumpy old sod.


message 35: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why mine are mostly female-narrated."


Us dudes at war enthusiasts get no respect ;D


message 36: by Eileen (last edited Apr 18, 2013 06:06PM) (new)

Eileen Iciek | 459 comments Steven wrote: "Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why mine are mostly female-narrated."

Us dudes a..."


There's a whole lot who like dudes at war. I'm not one of them but I plowed through the opening scenes of

Sword Song (The Saxon Stories, #4) by Bernard Cornwell and managed to finish the book. I am afraid that I became a big Uhtred of Bebbenburg fan with that book.


message 37: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why mine are mostly female-narrate..."


Cornwell will do that to a person. His characters can be quite compelling.


message 38: by Eileen (new)

Eileen Iciek | 459 comments Steven wrote: "Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why mine are mostly..."


If you read the comments in the Bernard Cornwell discussions, there are a lot of us who find Uhtred an attractive character, although none of think we would really want to know him.


message 39: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" books. That's why ..."


Yeah, he would not be on the top of my list of dinner guests either. 'Wouldn't mind him watching my back though.


message 40: by Eileen (new)

Eileen Iciek | 459 comments Steven wrote: "Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Eileen wrote: "Steven wrote: "Kate wrote: "Thanks for recommending me, Gary. :D

Sarah Louise, I know what you mean about needing a break from the "dudes at war" book..."


Too true!


message 41: by Kate (new)

Kate Quinn | 542 comments I'm a huge Cornwell fan. Actually I have no problem with battles and blood HF (and I've certainly written my share of violent scenes). The thing I find head scratching is how little crossover there is: either HF has to be battle-heavy and male-driven, or it has to be about soulful princesses with arranged marriages and court politics. Where's the middle ground? Plenty of ladies like some blood and gore in their HF, and plenty of gentlemen like a royal yarn with politics and arranged marriages!


message 42: by Darcy (new)

Darcy (drokka) | 91 comments I will second Marina. I've read all four books in the series and they involve intrigue, some battle (particularly in the 3rd book), espionage and a lot of other fun stuff besides. Plus, M.C. Scott is simply a brilliant writer.


message 43: by Eileen (new)

Eileen Iciek | 459 comments Kate wrote: "I'm a huge Cornwell fan. Actually I have no problem with battles and blood HF (and I've certainly written my share of violent scenes). The thing I find head scratching is how little crossover the..."

It could be that most women don't have military/battlefield experience, and a lot of men have no clue what a woman is looking for in a relationship. But, I just finished A.S. Byatt's The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt which ends shortly after WWI. And her descriptions of those battles, although brief, helped me imagine them better than any other book I have read covering that period.

So it can be done!


message 44: by [deleted user] (new)

Kate wrote: "I'm a huge Cornwell fan. Actually I have no problem with battles and blood HF (and I've certainly written my share of violent scenes). The thing I find head scratching is how little crossover the..."

Hurrah Kate well said.


message 45: by Steven (new)

Steven Malone | 132 comments Kate wrote: "I'm a huge Cornwell fan. Actually I have no problem with battles and blood HF (and I've certainly written my share of violent scenes). The thing I find head scratching is how little crossover the..."

Amen. I'm actually one of those 'dudes'. Women are the toughest of our species and I've always been fascinated with their struggles to survive in a tough world. I have tried to infuse my stories with strong women. I guess it's in my genes. Many of my female ancestors found a way to succeed and thrive under very hard circumstances. I even married that type of woman.


message 46: by Judith (new)

Judith Starkston | 34 comments Kate wrote: "I'm a huge Cornwell fan. Actually I have no problem with battles and blood HF (and I've certainly written my share of violent scenes). The thing I find head scratching is how little crossover the..."

I'll second (or third) Kate on this one. I totally agree.


message 47: by David (new)

David Alan | 4 comments Fantastic list. Keep going with anything that has to due with the Roman Empire, not just Rome.


message 48: by Bryn (last edited May 04, 2013 02:35AM) (new)

Bryn Hammond (brynhammond) | 265 comments I found this in a thread for 'Most difficult books (that were worth the challenge)'. Of course, I just had to wade right in... I've been on p.80 for months. Seriously, though, I like the subject: Virgil's last days and angst over his art, with the fascist politics of the age of Augustus thrown in. I say fascist because the writer began this novel in a Nazi concentration camp and he invokes that.

The Death of Virgil
The Death of Virgil by Hermann Broch


message 49: by Judith (last edited May 04, 2013 07:48AM) (new)

Judith Starkston | 34 comments David wrote: "Fantastic list. Keep going with anything that has to due with the Roman Empire, not just Rome."

There's Bruce MacBain's Roman Games: A Plinius Secundus Mystery. My review if you're interested. His second one is out also, I think. That one is set in Bythinia.


message 50: by Vann (new)

Vann Turner (vann_turner) I found this list enjoyable, and reminded me of some that never got around to reading, but will now.

The Historical Novel Society has an excellent article on their website from the initial publication of their magazine years ago. It is by James Hawking, entitled Roman History Through a Hundred Novels.


« previous 1 3
back to top