Customer Reviews for

Daughters of Rome (Empress of Rome Series #2)

Average Rating 4
( 35 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Disappointing as a Prequel

If I could have given this book three and a half stars instead of four, I would have. Although I ended up really liking Daughters of Rome, for the first half of the book I found it very disappointing. I rushed out to buy this novel the day it was released because I'd be...
If I could have given this book three and a half stars instead of four, I would have. Although I ended up really liking Daughters of Rome, for the first half of the book I found it very disappointing. I rushed out to buy this novel the day it was released because I'd been so blown away by Kate Quinn's Mistress of Rome. Since this was that book's prequel I figured it would be similarly original, dark, and suspenseful. When I started to read it I realized this wasn't the case. First off, Daughters of Rome lacked the engaging storytelling of Mistress of Rome. What I loved a lot about Quinn's first novel was the successful use of different voices and types of narration to tell the story. Daughters was limited to the third person, although it followed several characters around in this way. The storyline was that it is A.D. 69, a tumultuous period in ancient Rome, when Imperial power was switching hands faster than the seasons could change. Cornelia, a proper Roman matron with dreams of being Empress, and her sister Marcella, an aspiring historian, try to stay afloat amidst all the assassination and intrigue. Their cousins, the scandalous Lollia and the horse-obsessed Diana are also swept up by the events of that year and are trying to survive. For the first half of the book I can't really say I liked any of the characters. The plot lagged. There wasn't a lot going on in the story to distract from how selfish and scheming Marcella was and how Cornelia was passive and unexciting. Halfway through however, the story picked up and I became invested in the characters Cornelia and Lollia, while the danger felt more imminent. It was fun to recognize familiar characters from Mistress of Rome and to see how the stage was set for the events of that novel. There could have been less details of horse races at the Circus Maximus and more about Domitian, a character I found very interesting. But Daughters had some heart-pounding romances and an exhilarating climax. It was also clearly well-researched and the historical details were superb. In the end it was well worth reading and I definitely recommend it to Kate Quinn fans.

posted by dholland08 on April 18, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Disappointing!

Kate Quinn's first book was rather good and I looked forward to the release of Daughters of Rome. I have to say, though, that this book just didn't grab my attention.

I found myself going back a lot to see what I'd missed. A character might lie on a couch without e...
Kate Quinn's first book was rather good and I looked forward to the release of Daughters of Rome. I have to say, though, that this book just didn't grab my attention.

I found myself going back a lot to see what I'd missed. A character might lie on a couch without ever having entered a room, and I'd ask "Wait, when did he/she get there?" Or a character might be on a horse one moment, and then magically stomping away the next without ever having dismounted. Little things like that make me crazy!

Also, the characters just didn't have any real personality. What minimal personality they were given was inconsistent throughout. Lollia was initially presented as thoughtless and flighty, prone to ignoring her daughter, but as the book progressed she was portrayed as almost "mother of the year".

In all, this book was a waste of $9.99. If I'd gotten this as a free book I wouldn't have finished it, but I figured I owed it to myself since I'd shelled out money. Kate Quinn looked like a promising author with her first book, but from now on I'll avoid her work until I'm convinced she's slowed down and taken her work more seriously.

posted by amydague on May 6, 2011

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  • Posted April 18, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Disappointing as a Prequel

    If I could have given this book three and a half stars instead of four, I would have. Although I ended up really liking Daughters of Rome, for the first half of the book I found it very disappointing. I rushed out to buy this novel the day it was released because I'd been so blown away by Kate Quinn's Mistress of Rome. Since this was that book's prequel I figured it would be similarly original, dark, and suspenseful. When I started to read it I realized this wasn't the case. First off, Daughters of Rome lacked the engaging storytelling of Mistress of Rome. What I loved a lot about Quinn's first novel was the successful use of different voices and types of narration to tell the story. Daughters was limited to the third person, although it followed several characters around in this way. The storyline was that it is A.D. 69, a tumultuous period in ancient Rome, when Imperial power was switching hands faster than the seasons could change. Cornelia, a proper Roman matron with dreams of being Empress, and her sister Marcella, an aspiring historian, try to stay afloat amidst all the assassination and intrigue. Their cousins, the scandalous Lollia and the horse-obsessed Diana are also swept up by the events of that year and are trying to survive. For the first half of the book I can't really say I liked any of the characters. The plot lagged. There wasn't a lot going on in the story to distract from how selfish and scheming Marcella was and how Cornelia was passive and unexciting. Halfway through however, the story picked up and I became invested in the characters Cornelia and Lollia, while the danger felt more imminent. It was fun to recognize familiar characters from Mistress of Rome and to see how the stage was set for the events of that novel. There could have been less details of horse races at the Circus Maximus and more about Domitian, a character I found very interesting. But Daughters had some heart-pounding romances and an exhilarating climax. It was also clearly well-researched and the historical details were superb. In the end it was well worth reading and I definitely recommend it to Kate Quinn fans.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 21, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    Wow

    This book takes historical fiction to the next level. The characters are very well developed, if you have had any interactions with sisters or female cousins, then you will more than likely be able to relate to these characters even though they live two thousand years ago. The plot is well researched with people who actually existed in that time period. If you have read Mistress of Rome this will answer a lot of questions. The format of this nookbook is well done also, no annoying typos or grammatical errors that I noticed.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2011

    Engaging, fast-paced read

    Thoroughly researched fictional account of the year of four emperors. Great characters and plot.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 21, 2013

    good summer read

    I picked Mistress of Rome (another book in this series) off the recommended table at my local B & N and really enjoyed it Daughters is kind of a prequel.If you enjoy historical fiction, you will really like it. The third book Empress of the Seven Hills is also very good. Kate Quinn doesn't get overly graphic with sex or violence like most writers do with ancient Rome. She concentrates more on the characters and relationships.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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