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Makten och kärleken : [roman] (1990)

av Colleen McCullough

Serier: Masters of Rome (1)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
2,797513,562 (4.05)127
McCullough's epic tale of ancient Rome explores the power struggle between an ambitious military man and a man who lost his fortune to pleasure.
  1. 30
    Gräskronan : [roman] av Colleen McCullough (guurtjesboekenkast)
    guurtjesboekenkast: In dezelfde Serie
  2. 00
    The Light Bearer av Donna Gillespie (Cecrow)
  3. 00
    The Fall of the Roman Republic: Six Lives av Plutarch (Cecrow)
    Cecrow: Plutarch's biographies of six key figures, including Marius and Sulla.
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» Se även 127 omnämnanden

engelska (45)  spanska (4)  franska (2)  Alla språk (51)
Visa 1-5 av 51 (nästa | visa alla)
I really tried with this one, as it was a recommendation from a trusted friend. I struggled with it off and on for 8 months before finally deciding to throw in the towel. As other reviewers have said, this book is way longer than it needed to be and not nearly engaging enough to justify that length. The 10 page letters I found to be particularly annoying and dull. If I wanted a dry, matter-of-fact explanation of events I would have picked up an actual history book! To me, the point of historical fiction is to take a real time and place in history and make you feel like you're there, actually experiencing it along with the characters. This book was all telling and no showing. ( )
  sarahb6 | Sep 2, 2020 |
Ancient Roman history at the macro level divides neatly into the Republic and Empire eras. McCullough's seven volume historical fiction series tackles the transition between them. Among the options for her logical starting point, she chose the rise of Gaius Marius to consul, which supplies plenty of drama. It also works as an early beginning to the story of Julius Caesar, dominant figure of the transition. It is his family's deal struck with Marius that eventually makes it possible for a Caesar to ascend to the heights of Roman power.

On a sliding scale for historical fiction, this lands unusually close to the actual history end. This first volume predominantly belongs to Marius, but also serves as a kind of origin story for Sulla who will eventually become his rival. These names I knew; some I did not, and mostly resisted the Internet so the novel could reveal their importance. The research is fantastic, and (as far as I've determined) where it takes some liberties it does so in the vein of a best guess. Invented characters are few, and there's a minimum of invented drama, but still plenty of excitement to go around in the careful round-robin coverage of political, personal and military events. There's a hundred pages of glossary at the end to defend her interpretation. All of these are positives for me, but they may not appeal if you only want a rollicking story. McCullough likes sticking to the facts, and reality can be stranger and messier than fiction.

The writing unfortunately isn't at the level that I normally enjoy. McCullough is sometimes too obviously sharing her research instead of smoothly integrating it, and the dialogue can be borderline juvenile, although neither flaw is taxing. It's very strange to me that Marius and Jugurtha, for all of their mutual history and respect, never speak face to face; is that likely? Helpful maps are inserted where the author thought them relevant, but require extra bookmarks to find them when they matter again. The book's greatest feature is that it successfully makes its setting come alive: the ancient city of Rome and environs feel like real places, the historical figures like real people with all of their pettiness and humanity to balance their accomplishments. It felt like I heard what the Romans heard, smelled and saw the same things they did as they went about their business. It's a world I'll be pleased to return to in "The Grass Crown". ( )
1 rösta Cecrow | Mar 30, 2020 |
Filthy. I put it down after less than thirty pages. ( )
  tiasreads | Dec 11, 2019 |
Whew! ( )
  a1stitcher | Jun 22, 2019 |
Gaius Marius and Lucius Cornelius Sulla - slow moving, action-less, wordy, overly long girl view of two Roman heroes - about 400 pages more than needed - well researched and commendably accurate in detail - enjoyed certain parts of the book but the story led nowhere and the conclusion was unsatisfactory. ( )
1 rösta BayanX | Jan 10, 2019 |
Visa 1-5 av 51 (nästa | visa alla)
"Those willing to hunker down for a stretch of close reading will be rewarded with a memorable picture of an age with many aspects that share characteristics ontemporaneous with our own."
tillagd av bookfitz | ändraPublishers Weekly (Oct 1, 1990)
 
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Frederick T. Mason,
dear friend, splendid colleague, honest man,
with love and gratitude
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Having no personal commitment to either of the new consuls, Gaius Julius Caesar and his sons simply tacked themselves onto the procession which started nearest to their own house, the procession of the senior consul, Marcus Minucius Rufus.
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