244 Following

SusannaG - Confessions of a Crazy Cat Lady

Just another GR refugee.  Other than that, I had a stroke in 2004, and read almost anything I can get my hands on, though I have a particular weakness for history, mystery, and historical fiction.

Currently reading

Ice Ghosts: The Epic Hunt for the Lost Franklin Expedition
Paul Watson
Progress: 6 %
I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life
Ed Yong
Progress: 40 %
Wizard's First Rule
Terry Goodkind
Progress: 49 %
Thomas Cromwell: The Untold Story of Henry VIII's Most Faithful Servant
Tracy Borman
Progress: 14 %
Storm in a Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life
Helen Czerski
Progress: 20 %
The Hanover Square Affair
Ashley Gardner
Progress: 10 %
Medieval Tastes: Food, Cooking, and the Table (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History)
Beth Archer Brombert, Massimo Montanari
Progress: 10 %
Scars of Independence: America's Violent Birth
Holger Hoock
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
Yuval Noah Harari
Progress: 9 %
Elizabeth: The Forgotten Years
John Guy
Progress: 20/512 pages

Pompeii: A Tale of Murder in Ancient Rome

Pompeii: A Tale of Murder in Ancient Rome - Robert Colton

This is a historical mystery with a very twisty plot.


Set (mostly) in ancient Pompeii, what interested me was that rather than taking the often-done course of setting his tale during the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in A.D. 79, Colton has decided to set his book in events in the period around the time of the great earthquake in A.D. 62.  A nice variant, and I liked it.


I also liked that several of the characters are known ancient inhabitants of ancient Pompeii - certainly Jucundus (with whom readers of the Cambridge Latin Course will be familiar) and Julia Felix, and probably several more.


(Note: If you read the kindle edition, do remember to press the "backwards" button several times when you open the book; I found both a long character list (very helpful), and a map of the ancient city.  Both were very useful.)


My main problem was with the motivation of one of the two primary characters, Tay.  We know what he did, but not why.  I was left still feeling very curious, not only as to his motivations, but as to his past.


A lesser problem was the extreme twistiness of the story; I think it would have been a better novel if it had a slightly less contorted plot.  (On the other hand, I liked very much the starting of each chapter with letters; a nice touch.)


I'd probably read another book in the series, though I might not go out looking for it in particular.