Part of the World History series (which also includes "Ancient Greece", "The Roman Republic", and "Hitler's Reich", this is an in-depth overview that lends itself well to curriculum use. From the glory of the Augustan Age to the fall of Rome, Nardo's history focuses on the role of the Caesars and also on the everyday life of the Romans, their citizens, and their slaves. The bright cover and rather large size of the volume suggest a middle-school audience, but the material is scholarly and detailed. The design is accessible, with black-and-white illustrations on every page and numerous boxed quotations, some from modern historians, others from the era (a bishop's account of the persecution of the Christians, a soldier's letter home, etc.). A map would have been useful, but all sources are carefully cited, and Nardo includes a time line and an excellent annotated bibliography.