|Kate Quinn has rapidly risen among the ranks of my favorite writers. I found this book to be a little bit of a let down but still quite engaging (if that makes sense).
My biggest problem was one word. Hump. I almost started counting the number of times that word was used. Please, just call it sex. I am so appreciative of an author who can create passionate characters without using hundreds of pages to vividly describe the many different way in which people can have sex. This book did get a little creative with certain characters but it was never anything more than the reader really needed to know. Creating passion and romance without having to revert to pages and pages of sex is one of the things I have come to admire about Kate Quinn's writing. I think a lot of historical fiction writers today seem to think we need to know all about the 50 shades of ancient lovemaking. What's my point? My point is that using the word hump repeatedly to describe sex seems like kind of a cop out for a writer of Kate Quinn's talent. The word hump cost this review half a star.
The other half of the star was lost in Diana. I just didn't like her. She didn't seem necessary to the story until the end. With the other three women in the story, I just didn't feel Diana was really necessary. I enjoyed the background on Marcella (or Domitia). I know this book was released after Mistress of Rome but the time line in this book exists before Thea and Lepida. The tie in is fantastic. It makes me want to go back to Mistress just to try to better understand Marcella as the Empress.
Just throwing it out there as I wrap this up, this book would make for an amazing television series. I love The Tudors and The Borgias with all of their historical inaccuracies. Rome, which was tragically short lived, was great. I think this book could make excellent cable television viewing! Like I said, just throwing it out there. I am looking forward to tracking down a copy of the next book Empress of the Seven Hills and the release of Lady of the Eternal City. (hide spoiler)]