Thursday, October 8, 2009
Et tu, Brute?
A Noise of War : Caesar, Pompey, Octavian and the Struggle for Rome
by A. J., Langguth
A very exciting narrative, especially if you like political maneuvering or wonder about how Caesar did it. Langguth was at one time the Saigon bureau chief for the New York Times.You will see the parallels between the United States and Republican Rome. Booklist say's it all.
Langguth's narrative of the fall of the Roman republic begins in 81 B.C. with the confrontation of Julius Caesar and the dictator Sulla and the emergence of Marcus Tullius Cicero. Langguth then proceeds, through a series of progressively graver crises and progressively closer approaches to one-man rule, to the emergence of Caesar as supreme power. The intrigues and wars that followed constitute hardly more than an epilogue, for the republic was dead. Caesar and Cicero are the focal figures in Langguth's version of that story, but a host of other memorable actors are vividly portrayed. Langguth's concern throughout is readability, and this he certainly achieves.