Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Review: Pompeii

Pompeii, by Robert Harris was both my entertainment and source of
education for my trip to Italy. Harris writes historic novels that
bring already exciting topics (like the WWII code breaking effort) to
even more life by laying a plausable but fictional story on top of

Pompeii was a recommended book, because, well, I was visiting Pompeii.
It served it's purpose well: not only was the book a fun read, but I was
able to put Roman life into better perspective.

Personally, I wouldn't have thought that a story about an Aquaduct
Maintainer (an Aquarius) would have been that interesting, but I would
have been wrong. Harris knows how to create a fast paced stories with
lots of twists. The educational aspect is thinly vailed enough that
it's clearly there, yet manages to add to the story.

Pompeii is definitely not a replacement for a detailed guide to the
ruins themself (not that it claimed to be). It's excellent at putting
you in the mood and letting you get the right perspective.

I give this book a 9.3/10.0 - action and history, and a story where the
geek (no doubt, the Aquarius was the equivalent of the geeks of today)
is the hero - how can one go wrong?


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