Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT Alt #Rome series book #3 Successio by @alison_morton

Today’s team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie is reading her way through the Roma Nova series by Alison Morton. Today she reviews Book #3 Successio 

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When a series is ongoing it’s always number three that makes or breaks it for me. Either I’ve had enough of the same ol’ same ol’ or I’m hooked for life.

Roman Nova has got me hooked for life!
I loved that the new challenges life threw at the characters befit their older ages and yet there was plenty of the alternate history, women kicking butt and page turning thriller that drew me to the series in the first place.
Would I recommend it?
For sure! Just start with Inceptio and keep on going! As for me, I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book!
Book description

Roma Nova – the last remnant of the Roman Empire that has survived into the 21st century – is at peace. Carina Mitela, the heir of a leading family, but choosing the life of an officer in the Praetorian Guard Special Forces, is not so sure.

She senses danger crawling towards her when she encounters a strangely self-possessed member of the unit hosting their exchange exercise in Britain. When a blackmailing letter arrives from a woman claiming to be her husband Conrad’s lost daughter and Conrad tries to shut Carina out, she knows the threat is real.

Trying to resolve a young man’s indiscretion twenty-five years before turns into a nightmare that not only threatens to destroy all the Mitelae but also attacks the core of the imperial family itself. With her enemy holding a gun to the head of the heir to the imperial throne, Carina has to make the hardest decision of her life…

About the author

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years. Sign up to Alison’s newsletter for a FREE ebook of series starter INCEPTIO: http://eepurl.com/ckNeFL

Alison Morton

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT @barrow_judith reviews Alt #Rome Inceptio by @alison_morton

Today’s team review is from Judith, she blogs here http://judithbarrowblog.com/

#RBRT Review Team

Judith has been reading Inceptio by Alison Morton

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My Review:

I need to say from the start, that I may not have been in the right frame of mind to read what, to me, is a book with a complex and fantastical plot.  I wanted to like INCEPTIO; I started off really enjoying the book but as I read on I found the plot erratic; sometimes dragging, sometimes rushing by. So I struggled to be totally engaged with the story.

Told mainly from the point of view of Karen Brown, a modern New York resident, it is to the author’s credit that the protagonist is quickly built into a rounded character and it is easy to empathise with her in the rapid change in her circumstances. But, as the story progresses it becomes quite obvious that Karen,  soon renamed Carina Mitela as the most important resident of Roma Nova, wasn’t going to be beaten by any antagonist nor fail in any of the tasks she was given to complete. I felt there  were too many (and sometimes what I thought were ‘tongue in cheek’ ) attacks on the protagonist, designed to persuade her to sign away her  inheritance of vast amounts of money and, more importantly, a very successful business before her twenty-fifth birthday.

I did like the way the author built up some of the other characters: Karen/ Carina’s grandmother, Nona/Aurelia, the attractive, soon to be lover, Conrad. (I would have liked more time spent on the building of the relationships between the protagonist and these two characters – I am always more won over by character-driven tales ). And I also enjoyed characters such as Lurio, Apollodorus and Aelia. Even the antagonist, Renschman (told from a third person point of view, so we were a little distanced from him but could still see, if not empathise, his mindset – he has personal reasons for hating Karen) had his moments of depth were true evil for me. Of necessity there needed to be a lot of characters to populate this alternative country. But I did find myself shuffling back and forth sometimes to find out who fitted where.

Must admit though, I did like the idea of a country where the women ruled and called the shots!!

One of Alison Morton’s strengths is dialogue, both internal and spoken; there is never any doubt which character is speaking, even without dialogue tags. Yet even here I tended to be pulled out of the story by the constant use of Latin (Yes, I l know it adds to the validity of the country but still… . I have to confess this might have brought back too many memories of the language from a certain teacher in my schooldays! Don’t ask!!)

There is a lot of dense detail and some quite long descriptions of the fictitious state of Roma Nova. These build up a good sense of place of this civilisation that exists as a left over land of the long ago Roman Empire. Interesting- but I found they slowed the plot for me and I have to admit I did skip over some of them. And I found some of the narration, in parts, also dragged a little.

Loved the cover, by the way. I see this is a theme throughout the Roma Nova Thriller series.

Would I recommend? Well, yes to readers who enjoy alternative historical fiction with lots of action and lots of description.

Having written this review and then gone onto Amazon and seen how many 5* this book has been given, I think I’d like to read more of  Alison Morton’s work. Perhaps this just wasn’t for me at the moment

Book description

INCEPTIO plunges you into a 21st century Roman world. Apart from kidnapping, heartache and a close encounter with Latin grammar, New Yorker Karen Brown must contend with a fascinating Praetorian elite forces officer. Oh, and a crazy killer pursuing her for a very personal reason.

Karen flees to her dead mother’s homeland, Roma Nova, the last remnant of the Roman Empire. Founded sixteen hundred years ago by Roman exiles and now ruled by women, it gives Karen safety and a ready-made family – but at a price.

In this adventure thriller set in an alternative timeline, Karen grows from a girl anybody might know into a strong female character not only intent on staying alive but also on finding out why the killer is hunting her.

A coming of age story, where an ordinary girl discovers there is a great deal more lying under her mundane existence, but also lethal danger. At what stage does she stop running from it?

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #BookReview Team #RBRT Alternative #Rome Perfiditas by @alison_morton #TuesdayBookBlog

Today’s second team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading Perfiditas by Alison Morton

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Years have passed since the events in Inceptio but our main character Carina is no less awesome for it.

It’s possible she’s quite a bit more awesome, or maybe it was because this book dives a bit deeper into the culture of Roman Nova (the society founded by Ancient Romans and ruled by women ever since) but regardless I enjoyed this book even more than the first.

Carina continues to overcome obstacles by being a general kick-ass lady, and yet stays remarkably human and even, dare I say, feminine when dealing with controversy as she finds herself thrown into the middle of a conspiracy to overthrow the government.

Would I recommend it? This book certainly earned the “thriller” in it’s series title (Roman Nova Thriller Series). I had a terrible time walking away from it once I was a few chapters in. Which is basically the best problem one can have with a book. But, of course, start with book one.  Starting midway through a series has the potential to upset the natural order of the universe. Consequences can be dire, don’t risk it!

You can find a review of the first book here: https://behindthewillows.com/2017/08/02/inceptio-by-alison-morton/

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book Description

Present day, alternate reality. Captain Carina Mitela of the Praetorian Guard Special Forces is in trouble – one colleague has tried to kill her and another has set a trap to incriminate her in a conspiracy to topple the government of Roma Nova. Founded sixteen hundred years ago by Roman dissidents and ruled by women, Roma Nova barely survived a devastating coup d’état thirty years ago. Carina swears to prevent a repeat and not merely for love of country.

Seeking help from a not quite legal old friend could wreck her marriage to the enigmatic Conrad. Once proscribed and operating illegally, she risks being terminated by both security services and conspirators. As she struggles to overcome the desperate odds and save her beloved Roma Nova and her own life, she faces the ultimate betrayal…

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…
The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.
Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years. Sign up to Alison’s newsletter for a FREE ebook of series starter INCEPTIO: http://eepurl.com/ckNeFL

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Rosie’s #Bookreview Team #RBRT Inceptio by @alison_morton alternative #Rome fiction

Today’s second team review is from Jessie, she blogs here http://behindthewillows.com

#RBRT Review Team

Jessie has been reading Inceptio by Alison Morton

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If you are looking for insight into what it might be like to live in an alternate reality in a civilization founded by Romans and ruled by women, this book will touch on that.

If you are wondering how it would be to step from a nobody into the top tier of society, this story flirts with that.

If what you really want is to read a book where, when circumstances get scary and difficult, a woman trains hard, becomes awesome and then kicks butt, this is your book.

Would I recommend it? I was almost disappointed there wasn’t more insight into the different culture the main character finds herself in. Almost. But I couldn’t be at all disappointed because I was too busy turning pages. This story had me hooked!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I discovered this book because I’m a proud member of Rosie’s Book Review Team!

Book description

New York, present day, alternate reality. Karen Brown, angry and frightened after a kidnap attempt, has a choice – being eliminated by government enforcer Jeffery Renschman or fleeing to mysterious Roma Nova, her dead mother’s homeland in Europe.

Founded sixteen centuries ago by Roman exiles and ruled by women, Roma Nova gives Karen safety, at a price, and a ready-made family. Just as she’s finding her feet, a shocking discovery about her new lover, special forces officer Conrad Tellus, isolates her.

But the enforcer has crossed to Europe to pursue her. Unable to rely on anybody else, she undergoes intensive training, develops fighting skills and becomes an undercover cop. But crazy with bitterness at his past failures, Renschman sets a trap for her, knowing she has no choice but to spring it..

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

Retalio (Roma Nova #6) by @alison_morton alternative Rome #HistFic series #fridayreads

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My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Retalio is book #6 in the Roma Nova series. Once again the book is set around the 1980s in a fictional Roman Empire existing in an alpine setting.

Aurelia Mitela, ex-Foreign Minister, is currently exiled in New Austria. Accused of betrayal and collaboration by fellow exiles because of a clever twist of facts by revolutionary Caius Tellus, Aurelia is isolated. Caius plans to completely destroy the old order and the rule of the twelve families, replacing the female dominated nation with one where males are the new leaders.

Not content to stay in her new home, Aurelia works hard to build relations with other exiles, raise funds needed to support them, and make plans to take back her beloved country. Ever conscious that Caius will try to sabotage her plans or even snatch her, she marries her partner to gain Hungarian citizenship. Then she works on creating a resistance network using her own military training and the skills of the exiles.

In places I found this book heavy on the politics needed to retaliate against the revolution, but I did enjoy all the resistance work and the build up to the final invasion. The weeks of planning and training were realistic, and I thought the descriptions of Roma Nova under the Caius’s rule were well written, giving the reader a good picture of events and situations. Another good book in this series and for all those intrigued by my review, I recommend starting with book #1 of the series to get a real feel for the Roma Nova world that this author has created.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Book description

Early 1980s Vienna. Recovering from a near fatal shooting, Aurelia Mitela, ex-Praetorian and former foreign minister of Roma Nova, chafes at her enforced exile. She barely escaped from her nemesis, the charming and amoral Caius Tellus who grabbed power in Roma Nova, the only part of the Roman Empire to survive into the twentieth century.

Aurelia’s duty and passion fire her determination to take back her homeland and liberate its people. But Caius’s manipulations have isolated her from her fellow exiles, leaving her ostracised, powerless and vulnerable. But without their trust and support Aurelia knows she will never see Roma Nova again.

A story of political and personal rivalry in an imaginary surviving state of the once mighty Roman Empire. But with a difference. Struggling to defend the tiny state and keep the families alive at the dissolution of the Roman Empire, Roma Novan women fought alongside their men. And they never forgot it as they rose to prominence through the ages. Now in the late 20th century the egalitarian state has been crushed into misery by a brutal dictator imposing male-only rule. Aurelia is their last best hope, but Caius who has longed to dominate and defeat her since childhood will do anything to stop her. Anything.

About the author

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

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Insurrectio (Roma Nova #5) by @alison_morton alternative Roman #HistFic series

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My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Insurrectio by Alison Morton is book #5 in the Roma Nova series. I have read several other books in the series so, recognised many of the characters and the setting straight away. Fictional Roma Nova is this author’s vision of how the Roman Empire might have survived and how it fits into today’s modern Europe. Each book has a little background to the series, explaining how a few Roman families escaped the fall of the empire and made their way to an alpine enclave in Europe. Here they continued their lineage using females to rule their nation.

Insurrectio is set in the 1980s. Aurelia Mitela, Foreign Minister and Imperial Councillor, is advised that her old adversary Caius Tellus is about to be released from prison. Returning to Roma Nova, he secretly works to gain power, undermining the current leadership.

Aurelia suspects that Caius is behind riots begun by a group calling themselves Toga Toughs who begin a national revolt. After a brutal attack on her daughter, Aurelia finds herself fleeing the country as Caius enforces his revolution.

This is a high action story; the author writes the military aspects of the book very well and the attention to detail is just right to keep the story moving forward. I also like the Roma Nova world. Each book is consistent with the chosen Roman themes; yes, you do need to get your head around Roman style names and words, but it worked for me. Readers would definitely benefit by starting with book #1 of the series to immerse themselves in the whole Roma Nova experience.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Book description

Aurelia Mitela, ex-Praetorian and imperial councillor in Roma Nova, scoffs at her intelligence chief when he throws a red file on her desk. But 1980s Roma Nova, the last province of the Roman Empire that has survived into the twentieth century, has problems – a ruler frightened of governing, a centuries-old bureaucracy creaking for reform and, worst of all, a rising nationalist movement with a charismatic leader.

Horrified when her daughter is brutally attacked in a demonstration turned riot, Aurelia tries to rally resistance to the growing fear and instability. But it may already be too late to save Roma Nova from meltdown and herself from entrapment and destruction by her lifelong enemy.

About the author

Alison Morton

Even before she pulled on her first set of combats, Alison Morton was fascinated by the idea of women soldiers. After six years in a special communications regiment, she left as a captain, having done all sorts of interesting and exciting things she can’t talk about, even now…

The mosaics at Ampurias (Spain) and their creation by the complex, power and value-driven Roman civilisation made her wonder what a modern Roman society would be like if run by strong women.

Now, she writes Roman-themed alternate history thrillers with tough heroines, tends a Roman herb garden and drinks wine with her husband of 30 years.

Goodreads | AmazonUK | AmazonUS | Twitter

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