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The medicus Ruso and his wife, Tilla, are back in the borderlands of Britannia, where he is tending the builders of Hadrian's Great Wall. Having been forced to move off their land, the Britons are distinctly on edge and are still smarting from the failure of a recent rebellion that claimed many lives.
The tension grows when Ruso's recently arrived clerk goes missing and things go from bad to worse when the young son of a local family also vanishes. While struggling to keep the peace between the Britons and the Romans, Ruso and Tilla uncover an intricate deception involving slavery and fur trappers, and it becomes imperative that they solve the mystery of the two disappearances before it's too late.
“Attention to day-in-the-life period details, judiciously doled-out twists, and dry British humor . . . One hell of a toga party.” —Entertainment Weekly
“Wonderfully entertaining.” —Newsweek
“Places Downie alongside such established masters of the Roman historical as Steven Saylor and Rosemary Rowe.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Shipwrecks, ex-wives, gruesome gladiatorial games, unruly children, family discord, and, of course, mayhem and murder. Highly recommended.” —Library Journal (starred review)
“Ruso rocks. Let’s hear it for those Romans.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)