It's Rome, 63bc. In a city on the brink of acquiring a vast empire, seven men are struggling for power. Cicero is consul, Caesar his ruthless young rival, Pompey the republic's greatest general, Crassus its richest man, Cato a political fanatic, Catilina a psychopath, and Clodius is an ambitious playboy.
The stories of these real historical figures - their alliances and betrayals, their cruelties and seductions, their brilliance and their crimes - are all interleaved to form this epic novel.
©2009 Robert Harris; ©2010 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
"Does not Dissapoint"
Having thoroughly enjoyed the first book in the series I was really looking forward to this next instalment. It was pleasing that it was read by the same narrator the excellent Bill Wallis. This book is very much the second part of a Trilogy and whilst it can be treated as a stand alone book it is best if you have read or listened to Imperium first. I am a fan of Robert Harris?s writing and yet again he has delivered a stunning tale full of intrigue and politicking, Some people have complained about the lack of development of certain characters but in my humble opinion it would have been an impossible task, there are just far too many characters that have to flit in and out because of the historical background. People are also frustrated that the hero of the book does not behave as they would expect or how they would like and yes he makes mistakes but for me that just adds to its enjoyment and its complexities.
I have thoroughly enjoyed the first two books in this series and I cannot wait for part 3.
I love Robert Harris's books - I've read all the rest of his fictional output, and Lustrum is the first one that I have experienced as an Audiobook. It's definitely up to his usual standard - a great story, with many twists and turns along the way. The narration is excellent - with great characterisation throughout, although I can't help thinking that Bill Wallis plays Julius Ceasar as James Mason! I await the next instalment in the Cicero Trilogy!
A worthy sequel to Harris' Imperium, the story of Cicero and Caesar continues (but can be enjoyed without reading teh previous book). A cast of vivid personalities, superb storytelling, and a fresh look on the Romans at the crisis of the republic. I assume Harris is, as, usual, historically faithful, although I suspect Mary Beard will have some issues with the decription of family breakfasts.
"Gripping and Educational!"
Fascinating insight (with, I'm sure, much guesswork) into Roman life and history, and a great political thriller, sequal to the equally excellent Imperium. Highly recommended.
"Might not have called my son Cato!"
If I'd read/ listened to this fifteen years ago, my delightful son Cato may have had another name.
This again was beautifully read, complex in the best possible way and I will listen several times.
"Superb, gripping, brilliant - a must for students"
I was trawling thru Audible and just happened upon this book. What a find!! I adore Roman history (had just listened to "Rubicon" (non fiction) on the fall of the Republic. Lustrum made Roman History utterly compelling. The reader is fantastic, each voice is individual and memorable and the pacing was perfect. Previously I had read/heard about the Cataline conspiracy and frankly didn't really get it , but while listening to this masterpiece, I finally understood how and why the republic fell. Better still I was on the edge of my seat on what would happen next. I was moved. I found myself shouting at the characters (in the car...perfectly normal) to "watch out" and shouting "don't trust him". Gave me a great new view on Pompey (fab Yorkshire Accent!!) and Caesar. If you know anyone studying the Roman republic get them a copy ... they will never forget a single character (from Tyro, to Hybrida, to Hortensius ... and I am a natural blonde!!) The most exciting audio book for 2011 for me (and I go through about three a month). I dashed out to buy the hard copy so I could revel in every page, but when all is said and done, the audio performance was so good, that I would rather hear it read - solves the problem of how to pronounce the damn names!! If you like mysteries and/or adventure and/or Ancient history you cannot go wrong.
"Well-crafted and enjoyable"
Although the title gives very little away as to the contents of the book, Harris effectively portrays the intricacies and power struggles of the centre of the Roman empire. I did not realise Lustrum was the second part of a trilogy, and it did not feel at all dismembered. The narrator Bill Wallis does a very good job, too, bringing the many faceted characters to life.
Why not award five stars, then? Though a sound and well-crafted story, it only lacks the gripping long-term effect of one of his other titles, Fatherland.
I loved every minute of this book. Brilliantly read: the narrator is excellent and versatile. No epic battles here - just wicked political intrigue, treachery and hypocrisy from the cradle of modern Western politics. Wonderful.
"Cicero 2: the new man gets older"
Good book, great narration. Not as enjoyable, IMO, as Imperium as Cicero is established and the book is therefore less about the development and rise as Cicero and more about the political shenanigans of the time. Still an excellent way to pass the time, submersed in different times
Listened this in the car on several long journeys. Very engaging reader who successfully brings the wide variety of characters to life
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