Written by Kate Quinn
Published by Berkeley
Review by Tracey Skeine
Here is yet another historical novel set in Ancient Rome, but Kate Quinn’s Empress of the Seven Hills stands in a class all its own. I was already a fan of Quinn’s from her previous two Rome centered novels, Daughters of Rome and Mistress of Rome, and while this new novel doesn’t focus on the same characters as her previous book, I found it equally captivating. Her research on Ancient Rome is meticulous, and what I appreciated as someone writing a book about that era myself is that where she was honest about where she changed the history. I understand that sometimes writers have to fudge the facts to make their stories work, but I like that Quinn didn’t try to hide it. Sabina is a very modern heroine, craving adventure, and she was brought to life through Quinn’s unique writing voice. This is what historical fiction should be, a sweeping, epic plot, historical details, believable characters, and sprightly dialogue. I will be looking for Quinn’s next novel.
Tracey Skeine is graduating with her degree in English Literature in June 2012. She is currently working on her first novel set in Caesar’s Rome.