Cover Image: I Am Rome

I Am Rome

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Member Reviews

This book bored me to tears.
I kept going back to it, and I realized each time that I really did not care what happened next.
The settings were laid out, but it read more like a play than a novel.
The characters were clear; there was no confusion as to who was who (and what side they were on.)
The "action", if you want to call it that, was stilted. It did not move along.
I was disappointed in this book.
I give it 2 stars for the effort. I would not recommend this book.

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I am Rome is a fairly straightforward and simplified account of the early life of Caesar, and the beginnings of how he came to be the man who is remembered today. It is also a history of Rome at that time. This novel, which does take some little literary license with known history, clearly lays out many of the events occurring in Rome during Caesar's youth and young adulthood, including the wars and the political infighting that was ongoing during this time, and how they affected his life and his family. My main quibble, other than that, is that the story is very choppy at times, jumping from present to the past at times with the turn of every page, more like a screenplay than a novel. And of course, as with any historical fiction, the conversations/dialogue are what the writer supposes/imagines them to be. But all in all, a very nice intro to ancient Rome.
Many thanks to Ballantine/Random House for the e-arc. Probably a 3.5 star read for me, rounded up to 4.

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I Am Rome is an interesting historical fiction novel about Julius Caesar that I thoroughly enjoyed. Rather than discussing Caesar's more famous accomplishments, the book fictionalizes his childhood and young adult years and focuses primarily on his first trial as a prosecutor. I enjoyed learning more about Rome in general and Caesar specifically, and I loved the author's take on Caesar's internal motivations. The author references the historical documents he utilized, going so far as to have characters say the most important comments their real-life counterparts made. The book "gives flesh" to a time period we all learn about in school, but delves deeper than just the facts.

The book is long but doesn't read long; in fact, I read it faster than another book that was half the size. The story is compelling and the interpersonal relationships are especially interesting. I was sometimes confused by the shifting chapters, which jump time periods and locations very quickly, and there's a lot of "head hopping" by the omniscient narrator. Posteguillo also describes things a little too much, especially during Caesar's biggest speeches. I found myself wishing he would stop interjecting minor details about the setting and just let the character speak. Finally, I found the details in the s*x scenes were a little too much. There's no need to describe a dictator's abuse, for example; we know dictators are abusive. These minor issues didn't detract from the overall story, though, and I look forward to reading more books in this series.

Thank you to Random House and NetGalley for the eARC in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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I am sad to say that this book is one I just could not get into reading or enjoying. I tried but quickly gave up. I am sure others will learn a lot of history from it but it just is not for me and I could not stay with it.

I wish to thank NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine Books for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this book. I have voluntarily read and reviewed it. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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My thanks to both NetGalley and the publisher Random House Publishing Group- Ballantine for an advance copy of the first book in a series looking at the life of Julius Caesar, a book that is already an international best seller.

Every great person has humble beginnings. Even the ones who as babies were put to sleep by their mothers repeating the great feats of the their families, and the great legacy that lies ahead for that child, as the mother of Julius Caesar did. Caesar is probably best known for the Ides of March, and being assassinated, but Caesar did so much in his short life. Fight pirates, sailed for a short time to England. Spent time with Cleopatra and much more. Caesar was a man who wen after life, and hated to lose, or be threatened. Which was a way he found himself in legal battle with one of the most powerful people in Rome. And nearly lost it all. I Am Rome:A Novel of Julius Caesar is the first book in a new series by Spanish author Santiago Posteguillo, translated by Frances Riddle, about the life of Julius Caesar, a book that is already an international bestseller.

The book begins with a little history of the era, and a mother singing a lullaby to a child about his greatness. The book moves to Rome in 77 BC. The ex-governor of Macedonia has been accused of brutal crimes, and for stealing tax monies levied against the Macedonians for road repair, a crime that can almost be considered treason. However the accusations are to Senator Dolabella, a powerful man whose political party controls most of Rome. Dolabella has paid off the judges who would decide his case, and does not fear anything as his power protects him. Until a young up-and-comer, one with a distaste for corruption decides to act as lawyer to the Macedonians. A man with much to lose, but a man who loves a good fight. Julius Caesar. Soon the shadows are full of threats, whispers are spread about him, and threats are being made real. And young Caesar might be in the fight of his life.

A very clever mix of Mary Beard books about Roman history and John Grisham. This is historical fiction that one doesn't see much of any more. A big, brash story full of bigger than life characters, threats, fights, plotting and historical discussions. There is a bit of a learning curve, but once the reader gets into the story, it really flies by well. The narrative does a little time jumping, explaining why Caesar does not like someone, and showing why, than returning to the story, but this is easy enough to follow. The characters are all interesting, and different enough that they don't all seem like guys in togas, but real people trying to live lives of meaning.

Some readers might not like the changes in the historical record, but when reading fiction, as much as the historian in me might get annoyed, it is fiction, and gets a pass. This is a book to get lost in and get swept away with, there are plenty of history books to read to tell the real history. Recommended for fans of Mary Beard, Gore Vidal, even Steven Saylor's mystery series set in Ancient Rome.

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4 stars for an excellent historical fiction book about the young Julius Caesar. This book was first published in Spain. The translation was very well done. The book goes back and forth between variuos time periods in Caesar's early life, showing the influences that shaped him, including his Uncle Marius, a Consul and victorious general, his mother, and his best friend, Titus Labienus.
Caesar takes on Dolabella, who was governor of Macedonia. Caesar agrees to be the lawyer for a group of Macedonians, who accuse Dolabella of raping a teenager, exorbitant taxes for road repair which were siphoned off into Dolabella's pockets and plundering a sacred temple.
But Dolabella is a senator and member of the optimates (elite of Rome). He proceeds to buy off all 52 judges. Earlier time periods explain how Caesar tangles with Sulla, a ruthless dictator and mentor of Dolabella. How Caesar survives multiple attempts to kill him makes for a rousing story.
One quote: "Sulla had bent laws and pressured senators to obtain command against Mithridates. He'd battled his way across Greece and Asia and all the way back across the Italic peninsula. Now, with Rome finally under his control, he dammed well wasn't going to lose it all to a cursed Samnite rebellion. "Victory or death!' he howled at the top of his lungs. Hundreds of men around him answered his cry: "Victory or death! Victory or death! Victory or death!' Lucius Cornelius Sulla was a selfish, social-climbing senator, a shrewd military strategist, a pillager of sacred temples. he was willing to purchase loyalties, break promises, and betray anyone to achieve his aims. He was a miserable corrupt, politician who would stop at nothing to satisfy his persona ambitions But there was one thing that Sulla was not: he was not a coward.."
Thanks to KATHLEEN QUINLAN at Penguin Random House Publishing for sending me this eARC through NetGalley.
#IAmRome #NetGalley

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"I Am Rome" by Santiago Posteguillo is a gripping novel that delves into the life and times of the legendary Julius Caesar. Set against the backdrop of ancient Rome, the novel offers a compelling portrayal of Caesar's rise to power, his military conquests, and the political intrigues that shaped the destiny of an empire. Through vivid storytelling and meticulous historical research, Posteguillo brings to life the tumultuous era of Caesar's rule, offering readers a riveting glimpse into the complexities of power, ambition, and betrayal.
The novel skillfully weaves together historical facts with fictional elements, creating a rich tapestry of characters and events that will captivate readers from start to finish. Posteguillo's masterful storytelling and vivid descriptions transport the reader to the heart of ancient Rome, immersing them in the grandeur and turmoil of the era.
With its meticulously researched historical details and compelling narrative, "I Am Rome" is a must-read for anyone interested in history, politics, and the human drama that shapes the course of civilization.

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I am Rome by Santiago Posteguillo tells the story of Julius Caesar as a young prosecutor who goes against Dolabella. I was enthralled with the story telling and getting to know Julius Caesar. I really don’t know much about him and I hope this series continues. The author seemed bias against Sulla, so I am wondering about what really happened. Will need to do more research. I recommend. Thank you to NetGallery and Ballantine for letting me read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Gaius Julius Caesar is an untested lawyer when he takes on the biggest case in Rome. Corrupt Senator Dolabella is known for his greed and gluttony, but with his political party in complete control of the government, no one dares challenge him. But when Julius Caesar sees corruption and abuse, he feels obligated to help, no matter the personal cost he must pay.

This historical fiction novel tells the origin story of one of the world’s most well-known leaders. The author bounces between a few main time periods – Julius’s Uncle Marius’s famous battles, Julius’s childhood, and the events surrounding the trial. The pacing of this book is very well done. Just when the reader is super invested in one story, we’re taken to a different time period. The author then cleverly weaves lessons from one era to another, tying together seemingly unrelated stories.

I was hesitant at first about whether I would be able to get into this book, but it reads like a courtroom trial/political thriller/family drama. The antagonists were infuriatingly cruel, and the political wars between the optimates and populares were, sadly, very relevant to today’s world. This book was an unexpected hit for me!

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Set in Rome, 77 B.C., I Am Rome introduces Senator Dolabella on the eve of going to trial for his crimes against his own city. This Senator is corrupt however and owns the jury. he has the money and the will to do whatever it takes to go free.

In this story, only a young prosecutor is willing to take the case on - Gaius Julius Caesar.

This is a story of ancient Rome but as common as anything read in the news today! Posteguillo's book is a bestseller in Italy and is sure to delight any interested in espionage, corruption, politics and of course history. Grab I AM Rome to meet a young Julius Caesar and learn how his first jobs formed his world view.

#randomhouse

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I’m so sad I didn’t enjoy this story. Could not get into the story and honestly didn’t feel like I cared enough about the characters. I didn’t finish this book, but I truly tried. I kept getting lost within the storyline. I was really excited to have gotten this digital copy, but unfortunately it had fallen flat for me. Thank you NetGalley and Ballantine Books.

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As someone who knows next to nothing about the history of Rome this book was interesting. I did think the book dragged at times but I did enjoy the battle scenes and the politics. I look forward to more from this author.
Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for ARC copy.

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As a fan of history I immensely enjoyed this read. There was a lot of historical facts about battles and troop positions woven into the narrative story. We study Julius Caesar so much in our schooling but not how he became JULIUS Caesar.
Recommend to any history fans as this will supply the back story and shed light on the climate of Rome that allowed Caesar to rise and ultimately fall. It felt like a very human account of a historical figure that has at times been vilified.

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This book was very difficult for me to get through. It begins with some egregious info-dumping, as Caesar’s mother murmurs to her infant son his entire family history in one go. The narrative piece of this historical fiction really suffers in its execution, with huge amounts of telling in place of showing. Sometimes it does actually show readers something, but then explains to them what exactly they were supposed to take from it, as if we didn’t have the intelligence to understand for ourselves. This makes for a long slog of a read.

Characterization is one-dimensional and almost cartoonish (and obesity is apparently the equivalent of villainous). When the author attempts to write dialogue and scenes between characters that are meant to be full of emotion, the result is often uncomfortable and awkward.. And this next criticism might be more to do with the translation than the original writing, but some of the speech and word choice seemed quite anachronistic to me. For example, one character asks if another has yet been murdered as planned. The spoken response is, “He’s history”. I’m not a scholar of the Roman Empire, but it’s difficult to imagine its people speaking like that. Same with the phrase, “she didn’t have the guts”.

I would say the redeeming factor of this book would be that I learned something about Roman history, but some other reviewers who seem to know a lot more about the Roman Empire than I do expressed great disappointment that the author did not stay true to the facts. The decision to continually jump in time from the trial unfolding to important events that happened previously was a bit jarring, and I’m also uncertain as to the appropriateness of this since readers already know how certain things will turn out since we’ve already been shown what lies in the future.

Thank you for the opportunity to review this book, but in my honest opinion, I cannot recommend it.

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A name familiar to most and a legacy that lived on long after he’s gone, and the events that shaped Julius Caesar’s young life before that legacy was established are explored throughout Santiago Posteguillo’s I Am Rome.
Rome has had an inequity of the power that various classes of citizens wield over the years but the elite class has dug in to brutally and long-lastingly shape the way Rome functions, protecting the elite from facing consequences for their harmful actions. When a case against Senator Dolabella is made, there are no lawyers willing to prosecute against him as he has the best lawyers at his side and has bought the jury, plus he’s a man known for to opt for violence to ensure his way, but the inexperienced, twenty-three-year-old Julius Caesar is willing to take on the case despite the dangers it poses to him and his family. As the trial progresses with Caesar prosecuting Dolabella, but more importantly defending the people of Rome from the corruption and tyranny of the controlling few, Caesar’s past plays out in memories of those in his life to highlight how the young man has been shaped and point toward what his future might be.
Providing ample detail and background for the historic events that played a role in shaping Caesar’s life and legacy, this dense narrative was structured in a way that weaves together past and present events to contextualize the impact they had on Caesar and how they, in turn, would influence how he moved in the world. Caesar’s character was developed and demonstrated thoroughly, with moments to highlight the bravery, courage, and quick thinking employed to navigate tricky situations. The people and events that influenced Caesar’s outlook of and interaction with the situations he faced most heavily and repeatedly emphasized the importance of strategy, with lessons great and small to underscore that importance in different ways, but so too was justice an emphasis, be it legal, through the trial that aims to be the core the story revolves around, or revenge taken by your own hand when the legal system failed to render a satisfactory verdict.
Overall, I’d give it a 3 out of 5 stars.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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There is a wealth of information in “I Am Rome”, which I found to be interesting, and yet also hard to follow at times. Author, Santiago Posteguillo, has written a piece of historical fiction that lovers of this time period will surely devour. I will be interested to see if this will turn into a series as there is so many tales to unravel in Julius Caesar’s life.
Thank you to both NetGalley, Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, ad Ballantine Books for providing me the opportunity to review "I Am Rome“ prior to publication. I am appreciative and leave my review voluntarily.

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What a fantastic story. I learned more about history reading this book than I did in a history book. I knew about Julius Caesar and his best friend Titus Labienus, but I had know idea about his uncle, father and the war between the senate and the populist. I had no idea how smart and sharp Julius Caesar was and how he used his brain to not only save his life but also conquer an enemy of Rome.

The story just draws you in and I couldn't wait to see what happens next, even though I knew what was going to happen and that he would succeed but I didn't know how he would survive. I found every moment of this story exciting and engaging and I kept wanting to know more about the real characters of this story and if what was going on was real or not. I also wondered why they don't give this book to people learning about Rome in school because it's a lot more interesting then those dry books with facts and dates you get in school.

I want to thank Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine, Ballantine Books and NetGalley for the advance copy of this fantastic story about Julius Caesar

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This book focuses on the trial of Senator Dolabella by the famous Julius Caesar. The storyline does go back and forth in history. So, at one point, you are in the middle of the trial and then the story switches back to several years prior to give the readers the background history. The book is long and at times I had to read quickly to get through certain chapters, but I enjoyed learning about this early part of Caesars life and the circumstances that lead to his role in history. I received an ebook from the publisher in exchange for a review via Netgalley.com.

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A long and well written historical novel about young Julius Caesar. Caesar is the nephew of a legendary Roman general aligned with the common people. Caesar finds himself the enemy of the dictator Sulla and the senatorial class.
This ancient story rings true today when the aristocracy abandons democracy in the promotion of wealth and power. Caesar stands as an example of a powerful man who uses power to promote the public welfare.

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This was an amazing book. I highly recommend it to everyone. Great characters and a great plot. I will be looking for more books by this author. The book is superbly written. Lots of twists, turns and shocking turns of events

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