Vivid, pacey ... Superb The Times.
Grand narrative underpinned by serious reading Guardian.
Confident, elegant ... Admirably ambitious Daily Mail.
From Romulus and Remus to the films of Fellini, Rome has always exerted a hold on the worlds imagination. Now Ferdinand Addis brings the city of Rome to life by concentrating on vivid episodes from its long and unimaginably rich history.
Each beautifully composed chapter is an evocative, self-contained narrative, whether it is the murder of Caesar; the near-destruction of the city by the Gauls in 387 BC; the construction of the Colosseum and the fate of the gladiators; Berninis creation of the Baroque masterpiece that is St Peters Basilica; the brutal crushing of republican dreams in 1849; the sinister degeneration of Mussolinis first state, or the magical, corrupt Rome of Fellinis La Dolce Vita.
This is an epic, kaleidoscopic history of a city indelibly associated with republicanism and dictatorship, Christian orthodoxy and its rivals, high art and low life in all its forms.