Friday, May 30, 2008

Terra Incognita

So wifey heads to the library again and returns with a this gem. Never heard of the author before, but wow is this fantastic.

I am not a student of history and even if I had been at one point, my memory does not serve me well, so I have no idea if the period setting is at all accurate, but it sure felt right to me.

So the novel is set in the early 2nd century a.d., in Britannia (which is, I take it, present day Great Britain). A Roman doctor accompanies his Roman Legion on a visit to some distant part of the Roman Empire in Britannia and there he falls into a murder investigation.

It's a wonderful story of mystery and treachery and even a little bit of mushy romance of sorts.

Apparently this is the second book in a series starring Dr. Gaius Petreius Ruso, the first being Medicus. The novel is engaging, funny, and tight. It is full of memorable quotes, sheathed in humor. I started noting some quotes, and I have a bunch of pages earmarked, but alas I believe the book must return to the library before I'll have a chance to write them down. Oh well.

This series, I believe, would make a simply marvelous movie or even a cable television series. I don't believe this true of all good books. VI Warshawski, for example. I very much enjoy VI novels, but I don't think it would make a good transition to the screen. I know there was a movie somewhere in the 80's starring Kathleen Turner about VI Warshawski, but I never saw it, nor do I want to, as I just can't see it doing the print VI any justice. But again, I do think Dr. Ruso would make a marvelous transition. Oh if only I were a producer!

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