A few years ago I read The Memoirs of Cleopatra by Margaret George. It is a huge book (900+pages) that made me a fan of historical fiction. What a story! When I heard about Cleopatra’s Daughter, I was very interested to see how the story continued. Author Michelle Moran immerses the reader in Rome at the time of Octavian. After he conquered Egypt (and following the suicides of Marc Antony and Cleopatra), Octavian takes Cleopatra’s children back to Rome. The story, narrated by Cleopatra Selene, points out the differences (and a few similarities) of Rome and Alexandria. It also shows the paranoia and fear the Romans lived with – slaves and wealthy alike. The book is filled with familiar historical names (senators, poets, relatives of Caesar) and events.
There’s a mystery to be solved – who is Red Eagle? He’s making trouble for slave owners and must be stopped. Could he be a freedman? A close friend of Octavian? A slave? Moran writes about the treatment of slaves as well as all the classes in Roman society. She also portrays a judicial system that left much to be desired – open air courts are depicted where the verdicts were known before the facts of the case were laid out.
There are detailed descriptions of many Rome landmarks such as the Pantheon, Circus Maximus, and Roman Forum. Moran includes a map of Rome in the age of Augustus (Octavian) as well as a map of the Roman Empire (in the age of Augustus). A timeline is provided that leads up to the deaths of Marc Antony and Cleopatra. Also helpful is a glossary. I really appreciated finding out what happened to all the main characters in the Afterword. I’ve added a book to my TBR list from one of the many resources.
From the gorgeous cover to the last page, Cleopatra’s Daughter is a wonderful book and one that I recommend to fans of historical fiction, the Ptolemies, and the Roman Empire.
Review copy from Michelle Moran and Random House. Release date is September 15, 2009.
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Michelle Moran and Random House are providing a hardcover copy of Cleopatra’s Daughter and a paperback copy of The Heretic Queen for a giveaway! I’m going to do separate drawings.
To enter: leave your email in the comment box (sorry – no email, no entry). You also must tell me which book you would like to win.
If you want to enter for both books you must do two separate comments.
This giveaway is world-wide!
Giveaway ends at 9pm EDT, this Friday, Sept. 11. Winners will be announced on Saturday, Sept. 12.
Giveaway is now closed