Customer Reviews for

Cleopatra and Antony: Power, Love, and Politics in the Ancient World

Average Rating 3.5
( 18 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Depends on what your looking for..

Let me start of by saying that from a research standpoint, "Cleopatra and Antony" is fantastic. It goes waaay in depth about the time period surrounding Cleopatra and Antony, digging back over a hundred years prior to their existance to fully explain to the reader the ...
Let me start of by saying that from a research standpoint, "Cleopatra and Antony" is fantastic. It goes waaay in depth about the time period surrounding Cleopatra and Antony, digging back over a hundred years prior to their existance to fully explain to the reader the context of the situation the lovers develop for themselves. The world is fully flushed with regards to battles, important and influential characters, the intrigue and power of the Roman Senate, and footnotes of interesting facts about the rulers and the period. It reads like a well-written history textbook and would be great companion for a class not only on Cleopatra and Antony but for the fifty to seventy-five years prior as well. If this is what you are looking for, a well-planned out history of the Roman Empire starting from just before Julius Caesar up to the death of Cleopatra and Antony, this book is for you as you will highly enjoy it.

Pass by this book, however, if you are looking for a detailed scope into the time Cleopatra and Antony spent together. The most you are going to get from this book are facts, mostly from a fella named Plutarch. There will be no steamy scenes of the couple together, no diologue or dramtic scenery of any kind. Looking for fiction, look elsewhere.

Also be prepared for the fact that although Cleopatra is listed first about Antony, this is kind of a misnomer. The two chapters deal with Cleopatra or, rather, her family history, and after that she is pretty much a supporting character. The REAL focus of this book is on Rome, specifically Caesar and his conquests and, after he dies, Antony. Antony himself isn't featured until about half way through the book. Granted there's a lot of history and backup to get to know before Antony's arrival and rise to power, but I felt that far too much time was spent on Caesar rather than Antony. And as for Cleopatra, it seems as if the author would tell about what was going on in Rome, then speculate as to how Cleopatra felt about the empire's actions on her and Alexandria. Don't get me wrong, Cleopatra's seduction of both Caesar and Antony and both of their affairs are outlined, but Cleopatra undoubtedly plays the secondary role to the affairs of Rome.

A couple of detractions. Like any good history textbook, there are a looooot of names of once-important people, and while you remember the major ones, after a while minor names, places, battles, and truces all start to blend together. Fair warning. Another thing is that the author paints Cleopatra, Antony, and Caesar as the "good guys". If there is anything to be learned from this book is that this isn't always so. The author expands on their heroic deeds and flashes by their deceits while reversing that treatment on those opposing the main three. Right or wrong, everybody (except apparently Octavia) is out for conquest and nobody is saintlike in the least.

Overall, I loved the book and thought it was a job well done. If a book on the history of Roman Empire as it pertains to the time of Caesar, Antony, and Cleopatra is what you are searching for, look no further.

posted by AaronChristopher on July 24, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

Interesting...

Just started reading the sample, seems interesting enough and i dont usually read in this genre. I will continue to read it though...out if curiosity so that in itself gets a few stars. I am intrugued to say the least.

posted by 13899507 on June 24, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2012

    Interesting...

    Just started reading the sample, seems interesting enough and i dont usually read in this genre. I will continue to read it though...out if curiosity so that in itself gets a few stars. I am intrugued to say the least.

    5 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 24, 2012

    ok read

    You must enjoy ancient history to read this. It is not a love story. There is much information about ancient Rome. Many chapters have no mentiom of Cleopatra or Anthony. I enjoy history so for me it was a good read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2012

    Not a love story!

    Although interesting, this is more of a history lesson and would have been better if their relationship was shown with more warmth and emotion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 28, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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