In this great drama, Marius, the general who saved Rome from barbarian invasion and became consul an unprecedented six times, has fallen into decline.
Sulla, his closest associate, has withdrawn himself from his commander’s circle in preparation for his own bid for power. As a deadly enmity develops between the two men, Rome must fight its own battle for survival – first against her neighbouring Italian states, then against the barbaric Asian conqueror. Births, deaths, prophecies and rivalries combine to create a whirlwind of drama, and a remarkable insight into the passion and torment of ancient Rome.
Colleen McCullough was born in western New South Wales in 1937. A neuroscientist by training, she worked in various Sydney and English hospitals before settling into ten years of research and teaching in the Department of Neurology at the Yale Medical School in the USA. In 1974 her first novel, Tim, was published in New York, followed by the bestselling The Thorn Birds in 1977 and a string of successful novels, including the acclaimed Masters of Rome series. In 1980 she settled in Norfolk Island, where she lives with her husband, Ric Robinson, and a cat named Shady. She passed away on January 29, 2015, at the age of 77.