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The Thieves of Ostia
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A unique and brilliant concept - Lindsey Davies for kids Ancient Rome is a hot favourite with children The Romans are National Curriculum Key Stages 2 and 3 schools will love this series 'Instantly accessible adventure... trans-century appeal' (THE GUARDIAN) Rights sold in 17 territories Inspiration for the prime time BBC TV series Over 900,000 copies of the series sold

About the Author

Caroline Lawrence is American. She won a scholarship to Cambridge to read Classical Archaeology, then did a degree in Hebrew and Jewish studies at University College London. She now lives in London with her English husband and teaches Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Art and French to children.

Reviews

Gr 4-6-This audio version of Caroline Lawrence's first book in the series (Roaring Brook, 2002) convincingly transports listeners to a port of Rome in 79 A.D. The plot, immersed in Roman culture, remains true to the period throughout. Even the chapter titles reflect the times ("Scroll One" the audio begins, instead of "Chapter One"). English actress Kim Hicks performs the script flawlessly. The heroine, Flavia Gemina, leads listenerd through a series of adventures in an attempt to solve the mysterious and brutal death of a guard dog. Accompanied by her four friends-Jonathan and Miriam, Christian children, Nubia, a slave girl, and Lupus, a tongueless beggar boy-the mystery is solved. Believable clues along the way draw listeners into the mystery. Not for the faint of heart, many of Lawrence's descriptions will make listeners feel a bit queasy. This title has enough fast-paced adventure and intrigue to engage even those uninterested in historical fiction, and enough historical detail to fascinate history buffs. Make room on the audio shelf for this one!-Kirsten Martindale, formerly Menomonie Public Library, WI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

"This was a very exciting and intriguing book - I couldn't put it down!" -- Megan Whiteman (aged 11) Aquila

In this atmospheric debut novel, the first installment of a planned series, readers are whisked to the first century A.D. to help girl detective Flavia Gemina solve a brutal crime in the Roman port city of Ostia. When the guard dog belonging to Flavia's secretly Christian neighbors is slaughtered, Flavia sets out to find clues. She is accompanied by four trusty companions: Jonathan and Miriam, the Christian children; Nubia, a slave girl whom Flavia has recently acquired with her birthday money (with the purpose of emancipating her); and Lupus, a mute beggar boy. Many adventures later a pack of wild dogs chases them, they narrowly escape malicious slave traders and discover that their chief suspect has committed suicide by jumping from a lighthouse the children catch the culprit. Those looking for thrill-a-minute entertainment will find their fill of near-catastrophic events here, but the violence may be hard for some readers to stomach. Red herrings emerge too conspicuously and dialogue is sometimes stilted. Nonetheless, this historical mystery offers an intriguing glimpse into the customs, attitudes and class systems of the Roman empire. Ages 9-14. (May) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

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