In late December 95 AD, Roman settlers in Britannia are preparing to celebrate Saturnalia. Innkeeper Aurelia Marcella’s plans for a peaceful holiday are shattered when her brother brings bad news. An enemy in Rome is trying to destroy her family by spreading rumors that they are plotting against Caesar. Her brother has lost his job as a government investigator, the mansio is menaced by a gang of native criminals, and when a party of rich, demanding travelers arrive to stay, their quarrels and violence spill over into Aurelia’s household. Then the Saturnalia banquet, highlight of the festival, culminates in tragic death. The second installment in the Aurelia Marcella series.
|Publisher:||Poisoned Pen Press|
|Series:||A Bitter Chill Series , #2|
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Jane Finnis has been fascinated by the past ever since as a child she walked the straight Roman roads of East Yorkshire. After reading history at London University, she worked for some years in London as a freelance broadcaster for BBC Radio. Now she is settled in East Yorkshire again with her husband Richard, and spends much of her time researching and writing about the Roman Empire. She also enjoys travelling, gardening, doing occasional radio work, and playing the guitar. Get Out or Die, the start of a series set in Roman York, is her first novel.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The Roman settlers in the province of Britannia near the town of Ebornacum (later known as York) in Dec 95 AD are getting ready to celebrate the holiday Saturnalia. Nobody is more excited than innkeeper Aurelia Marcella who expects no overnight customers due to the inclement weather. She is very disappointed when a very important Roman family comes up from Londinium to search for their runaway son who wants to marry a local girl and not the woman his parents chose for him. --- Aurelia¿s sister is shocked to learn that her fiancé Candidus is the rich Roman son of a senatorial family. A confrontation leads to the threat of him being disinherited but he chooses love over money. When his father¿s slave is killed in the patriarch¿s bed, Aurelia and her sister are accused of the murder. When a second slave is murdered, it verifies the patriarch¿s fear that someone is trying to kill him. Aurelia agrees to help in the investigation once she is cleared of any suspicion but the killer strikes again mounting a full scale investigation with Aurelia¿s sister and Candidus as two of the prime suspects. --- Readers who liked the first book in this series GET OUT OR DIE will find A BITTER CHILL is even more exciting. It is a fantastic historical mystery that gives insight into the Roman culture adjusting to life in the back water provinces. The characters are well drawn and the support cast plays key roles and are as important to the storyline as the protagonist. Aurelia is an independent businesswoman who would have been at home in twenty-first century America instead of a Roman province where women were considered second citizens. --- Harriet Klausner