logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: Mars
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-09-08 16:15
The Iron Hand of Mars by Lindsey Davis
The Iron Hand Of Mars - Lindsey Davis

Series: Marcus Didius Falco #4

 

Falco is sent by Titus Caesar to Moguntiacum in Roman Germany to deliver an iron hand (it's a sculpture) to the Fourteenth as a sign of the emperor's favour. He's also tasked with finding Munius Lupercus who was captured and sent to the witch priestess Veleda and finding the rebel leader Julius Civilis. Veleda apparently lives in the forest in Germania Libera, so he'll be behind enemy lines, so to speak, as well.

 

I had a lot of fun with this one. It's basically a Roman gumshoe story through the wilds of untamed German forests although it starts out as gathering background information in Moguntiacum and its surroundings. It takes a while for the forest to feature in the story but there were some rather creepy scenes in the Teutoberg forest where Falco and his companions stumble across an abandoned Roman camp and find themselves in the middle of a sacred grove complete with human bones. A couple murders are even solved although they don't feature as a central focus of the story. I really liked Helena Justina's brother Quintus Camillus Justinus in this too. And his dog (an excitable puppy who gets taken along with them through the forest).

 

I read this for the "In the dark, dark woods" square of the Halloween Bingo. I've decided that it fits because of the travel through the Teutoberg forest to find Veleda and for the creepy scenes mentioned above. There's also forest around Moguntiacum although it doesn't feature in the actual plot so much. The book could also fit the "Terrifying Women" square and maybe the "Amateur Sleuth" square although as an informer Falso is basically a private detective hired by the emperor (or his son, technically).

 

 

Previous updates:

29%

34%

66%

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-09-08 02:32
Reading progress update: I've read 66%.
The Iron Hand Of Mars - Lindsey Davis

Falco has gone off into the uncivilized (non-Roman-controlled) regions of Germany to try to speak with a witch/priestess who apparently lives in a forest, as well as to try to find a German rebel leader. They're leaving marshland and heading into the forest.

Next day we began to encounter stretches of light woodland, and at nightfall we hit the real edge of the forest. From now on we would need all our skills to find paths and keep to the right direction. From here the tree cover continued unbroken across the whole of Europe.

This counts as a forest for the "In the dark, dark woods" square, right?

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-09-07 12:56
Reading progress update: I've read 34%.
The Iron Hand Of Mars - Lindsey Davis

‘What are the chances rebellion will flare again among the tribes?’ Juvenalis did not regard it as a function of his appointment to give political briefings, so I let myself speculate: ‘It’s the old joke still. If a Greek, a Roman and a Celt are shipwrecked on a desert island, the Greek will start a philosophy school, the Roman will nail up a rota – and the Celt will start a fight.’ He glared at me suspiciously; even as a joke it was too metaphysical.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-09-07 03:10
Reading progress update: I've read 29%.
The Iron Hand Of Mars - Lindsey Davis

I'm keeping my fingers crossed for forests.

 

So far Didius Falco has reached the fort where the Fourteenth is stationed and where their legate has apparently gone missing. The only time forests figured in the narrative was when Falco was asking a peddler whether he had obtained his military items from a particular forest. Presumably they're surrounded by forest (first century Germany), though, so maybe the woods will figure in later on.

 

In case it isn't obvious, I'm attempting to read this for "In the dark, dark woods". Reading about Falco is fun anyway. Even with his woman problems.

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-09-03 21:00
A Wizard of Mars (Young Wizards #9)
A Wizard of Mars - Diane Duane

It was never going to be easy to follow up Wizards at War, so I can cut Duane some slack for the unevenness of this book. It takes a long time for the central conflict to show up, and then the climax is a bit rushed. The expanding role of Carmela into this world felt forced and she nearly veers into Mary Sue territory. The whole thing with Nita and Kit maybe starting to have feelings for each other didn't exactly come out of nowhere but since they've been kept apart for most of the previous few books, it felt unearned. There was a great deal of telling versus showing when it comes to their friendship. Plus the fact of them not talking and comparing notes as a way to get all this stuff to happen on Mars in the first place just didn't feel authentic if they're supposed to be such tight friends. 

 

Still, even if this wasn't up to her usual standards, it still has all the things that have made Duane's other books in this series such good reads: imaginative settings, lush descriptions, personal conflict and stakes, and more background into a newly discovered alien race packed into a couple of hundred pages than most tv shows can manage over their entire runtimes. She makes the Shamask-Eilit real, and the use of the LP here is certainly unlike any we've seen in the previous books too, which is something I've been asking for for awhile.

 

This is far from my favorite, but once things started picking up, it made up for the somewhat slow and uneven beginning. 

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?