By Steven Saylor
The yr is 52BC, and Rome is in turmoil. Rival gangs prowl the streets as Publius Clodius, a excessive born populist baby-kisser, and his arch-enemy, Tito Milo, struggle to regulate the consular elections. but if Clodius is murdered at the Appian means and Milo is accused of the crime, town explodes with riots and arson.
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Extra resources for A Murder on the Appian Way: A Mystery of Ancient Rome
High above the pool a corresponding square was cut into the roof, but instead of being open to the sky, there appeared to be a vast pane of glass across the skylight, through which the stars wavered as if they were underwater. It was a dizzying conceit: the skylight above appeared to be a pool reflecting the stars at our feet. I took a slow walk around the perimeter of the atrium. Installed in niches in the walls were the wax masks of family ancestors. Publius Clodius Pulcher came from a very ancient, very noble line.
Cried one of the men ahead of us. " "Clodius! " The shadowy figure at the window was silent for a moment, then let out a long, ringing laugh that echoed in the cold night air. The group ahead of us came to an abrupt halt. " said Eco. I nodded, then realized the hushed remark was a signal to his bodyguards. They tightened their ranks around us. We pressed on at a faster pace. "So where -" gasped the man at the window, barely able to speak for his laughter, "where is everybody headed in such a hot rush?
I mumbled grimly. At that moment it seemed the foulest crime imaginable. " Eco remained impassive. Bethesda crossed her arms and arched an eyebrow. By the dim lamplight the two of them still looked suspiciously like magpies. I closed my eyes. " I sighed, thinking an appeal to mercy might gain me just one more blissful moment of sleep. But before my head reached the pillow, Eco gripped my shoulder and pulled me upright again. "No, Papa! " I was irretrievably awake now, and grumpy — until I realized who was absent from the conspiracy to wake me.
A Murder on the Appian Way: A Mystery of Ancient Rome by Steven Saylor