A Murder on the Appian Way A Novel of Ancient Rome

Novels of Ancient Rome

Steven Saylor

Minotaur Books



Trade Paperback

416 Pages



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In 52 B.C., Publius Clodius, a Roman patrician turned rabble-rouser, is slain on the most splendid road in the world, the Appian Way. When Clodius's arch rival, Milo, is accused of the crime, the city teeters on the verge of chaos. As Cicero and Marc Antony prepare their orations for the explosive trial to come, Gordianus the Finder is charged by Pompey the Great to take a closer look at the murder. With the Senate House in ashes, and his own life very much in danger, Gordianus must return to a deserted stretch of the Appian Way in search of the truth—a truth that may save, or destroy, a city drunk on power, rent by fear, and filled with the madness and glory that is Rome.


Praise for A Murder on the Appian Way

"Saylor puts such great detail and tumultuous life into his scenes that the sensation of rubbing elbows with the ancients is quite uncanny."The New York Times Book Review
"Saylor is skilled at spinning a tale out of unlikely historical sources . . . literate, humane, and dramatic."The Boston Globe
"In Steven Saylor's lively imagination, Rome—both glorious and grimy—is revived."Seattle Times
"Really excellent . . . an enthralling re-creation of time and place, fascinating storytelling."—Sir Derek Jacobi

"As always, Saylor sketches the real-life historical background with a masterly hand."Kirkus Reviews

"Saylor meticulously resurrects ancient Rome, providing another irresistible installment in the continuing chronicles of Gordianus the Finder. . . . Gripping suspense and intrigue superbly supported by a wealth of accurate historical detail."Booklist

"The suspense never lags as Saylor spins a sophisticated political thriller that also brings his readers up to speed on their Roman history."Publishers Weekly

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

"Papa! Wake up!"

A hand gripped my shoulder and shook me gently. I pulled away and felt cold air on the back of my neck as the blanket slid away. I snatched it back and snuggled against it, burrowing for warmth. I reached for Bethesda, but found only a warm vacancy where she should have been.

"Really, Papa, you'd better wake up." Eco shook me again, not quite so gently.

"Yes, husband," said Bethesda. "Get up!"

What sleep is as deep as the sleep of a cold Januarius night, when the sky is a blanket of lowering clouds
Read the full excerpt


  • Steven Saylor

  • Steven Saylor is the author of the long running series featuring Gordianus the Finder as well as the New York Times bestselling novel, Roma. He has appeared as an on-air expert on Roman history and life on The History Channel. He divides his time between Berkeley, California, and Austin, Texas.

  • Steven Saylor Photo: Jerry Bauer
    Steven Saylor