Lumbered with working alongside reptilian Chief Spy Anacrites, Marcus Didius Falco has the perfect plan to make money - he will assist Vespasian in the Emperor's 'Great Census' of AD73. His potential fee could finally allow him to join the middle ranks and be worthy of long-suffering Helena Justina. Unexpectedly confronted with the murder of a man-eating lion, Falco is distracted from his original task, uncovering a bitter rivalry between the gladiators' trainers. With one star gladiator dead, Falco is forced to investigate and the trail leads from Rome to the blood-soaked sand of the arena in North Africa.
Winner of CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger 1999.
Lindsey Davis has written over twenty historical novels, beginning with The Course of Honour. Her bestselling mystery series features laid-back First Century detective Marcus Didius Falco and his partner Helena Justina, plus friends, relations, pets and bitter enemy the Chief Spy. After an English degree at Oxford University, Lindsey joined the Civil Service but became a professional author in 1989. Her books are translated into many languages and have been dramatized on BBC Radio 4. Her many prizes include the Premio Colosseo, awarded by the Mayor of Rome 'for enhancing the image of Rome', the Sherlock award for Falco as Best Comic Detective and the Crimewriters' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. She was born in Birmingham but now lives in Greenwich, London. Her most recent books are Master and God followed by The Ides of April.