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Summary

Full-cast BBC Radio 4 dramatisations of the first five Falco novels by Lindsey Davis, starring Anton Lesser as Marcus Didius Falco.

The Silver Pigs:
One fine day, AD 70, Sosia Camillina quite literally runs into Marcus Didius Falco on the steps of the Forum. It seems Sosia is on the run from a couple of street toughs, and after a quick and dirty rescue, PI Falco wants to know why. Hoping for future favours from Sosia's powerful uncle, Falco embarks on an intricate case of smuggling, murder, and treason that reaches into the palace itself.

Shadows in Bronze:
Rome, AD 71. Against his better judgment, Marcus Didius Falco secretly disposes of a decayed corpse for the Emperor Vespasian, then heads for the beautiful Bay of Naples with his friend Petronius. But this will be no holiday: they have been sent to investigate the murderous members of a failed coup, now sunning themselves in luxurious villas and on fancy yachts in Neapolis, Capreae, and Pompeii. 

Venus in Copper:
A small accounting error has left Marcus Didius Falco sharing a cell with a large rat. But the Roman Empire's most hard-done-by investigator is finally bailed out and promptly accepts a commission to help a family of freed slaves fend off a professional bribe....

The Iron Hand of Mars:
Falco is dispatched to one of the most hostile parts of the empire to deliver a new standard, an iron hand, to one of the legions. Germania is cold, wet, dismal and full of dark forests inhabited by bloodthirsty barbarians, but Falco has an even bigger problem to worry about: he has forgotten Helena Justina's birthday, and she is being pursued by the Emperor's son Titus Caesar. 

Poseidon’s Gold:
Returning to Rome after his mission to Germania, Falco finds that his mother is being harassed by a centurion named Censorinus, who says he is chasing a debt owed to him by Falco's late brother, Festus. When Falco refuses to cough up the money, he and Censorinus end up fighting...and later, the centurion turns up dead. Under suspicion of murder, Falco must confront his past and uncover his brother's secrets before he can clear his name and solve the mystery.

These funny and fast-moving adaptations are a treat for all Falco fans.

Cast:
Falco...Anton Lesser
Helena...Fritha Goodey/Anna Madeley
Petronius...Ben Crowe
Ma...Frances Jeater
Pa...Trevor Peacock
Vespasian...Michael Tudor Barnes
Titus...Jonathan Keeble

Dramatised by Mary Cutler
Directed by Peter Leslie Wild

©2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd

What members say

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Great adaptations - shame about the sound quality

These are wonderful adaptations - fast paced and funny - held together by a superb central performance by Anton Lesser. It is frustrating, therefore, that the sound quality of this issue is poor. There’s a muffled, echoey quality to the whole recording and in places (eg stories 1 and 3) there are sharp bursts of hissing and grating. I downloaded twice as I thought it was my equipment but I noticed one of the Audible.com listeners has had the same issue. Please provide a better, error free version!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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great bbc adaptation

says it all on the tin. really great entertainment and a cracking way to get into the Falco series. Anton Lesser would have been the ideal choice to narrate all of the books im this series. shame he doesnt.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Wonderful interpretation of ancient Rome

Fantastic and humour filled drama! Not to be taken to seriously the storylines are expertly intertwined and the acting beyond reproach. I hope to hear another series is coming. magnificent!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Beware

I have read all the Falco books and was looking forward to the dramatisations, I did read a previous review about the noise on the recordings. I returned the audio immediately after listening to the first faulty story. Please sort this out.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Good story

annoying interlude music and breaks in stories. otherwise most enjoyable and well written story. next book please.

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good old falco<br />

over too quickly, I'll miss Falco and Helena, interesting plots, great characterisation, well acted and good production values. highly recommended

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Fantastic

Ahh....dear Falco, how lovely to hear them all again. Anton Lesser is, and always will be Marcus Didius Falco.

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Loved it on the radio - excellent adaptation

Having listened to the unabridged audiobooks, then listened to these full cast versions on BBC Radio 4/4xtra, they were such good adaptations that I bought these too. Excellent acting that brings to live the characters as I imagined. More adaptations, please!

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Mills and Boon

Having read the books many years ago, I'm afraid that this adaptation by the BBC is more Mills and Boon than it is a historical detective story. I should imagine the the chap playing Falco, Anton Lesser, must cringe with embarrassment having had to speak the ridiculous drivel put into his mouth by the adapter of this book for the BBC. The original Author of the book might well have been Lyndsey Davis, but this is a very poor adaption of her work by some one that patently has No feel for historical fiction.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-10-18

Wonderful but flawed...

The performances are fantastic, the story is wonderful but the entire story has a weird sound in the background, at random intervals, that sounds like someone is ripping velcro, oras if they recorded this via some bootleg situation and there is FM static. It happens just often enough to be annoying, then stops for so long you think it won't happen again. Can someone clean up the recording and release the corrected version?

5 of 5 people found this review helpful