The Ancient World

Subject Guides Books Reading Lists The Ancient World

Books set in ancient Greece and Rome, compiled by Forbes Library Staff | Summaries from ContentCafe, NoveList, Wikipedia, | March 2011

  • The Memoirs of Helen of Troy
    by Amanda Elyot
    Fictional memoirs offer Helen of Troy's perspective on her turbulent childhood, the alienating impact of her stunning beauty, her kidnapping by Theseus, her marriage to the king of Sparta, and her role in the devastating war that would change the world.
  • The Penelopiad
    by Margaret Atwood
    Presents the cycle of stories about Penelope, wife of Odysseus, through the eyes of the twelve maids hanged for disloyalty to Odysseus in his absence.
  • The Ten Thousand
    by Michael Curtis Ford
    In a Greek epic set in the spring of 400 B.C., ten thousand battered, starving Greek soldiers stagger out of the frozen mountains of Armenia into a small Hellenic trading post on the eastern Black Sea.
  • Imperium
    by Robert Harris
    A tale inspired by the writings of Tiro, Cicero's confidential secretary, traces the life of the ancient Roman orator from his beginnings as a young lawyer through his competitions with Pompey, Caesar, and Crassus in the political arena.
  • Roma: the novel of ancient Rome
    by Steven Saylor
    Spanning a thousand years, and following the shifting fortunes of two families through the ages, this is the epic saga of Rome, the city and its people.
  • Nemesis
    by Lindsey Davis
    This is the latest in the series The Marcus Didius Falco Mysteries. When a pair of his father's associates disappear under suspicious circumstances, informer Marcus Didius Falco of A.D. 77 Rome investigates allegations of a feud involving a group of notorious freedmen, who are receiving high-level protection from corruptrulers.
  • Stealing Athena
    by Karen Essex
    The complex history of the Elgin Marbles is viewed through the lives of two women--Aspasia, an ancient Greek female philosopher, and Mary Nisbet, wife of the Earl of Elgin, who played a key role in bringing the sculptures to England.
  • Tides of War: a novel of Alcibiades and the Peloponnesian War
    by Steven Pressfield
    Presents the story of the great Athenian warrior and general Alcibiades, from his great victories on behalf of Athens to his later alliances with Sparta and Persia and his role in the eventual downfall of Athens.
  • Antony and Cleopatra
    by Colleen McCullough
    Retells the story of Antony and Cleopatra from a meticulously researched perspective that features detailedhistorical and psychological details about the love affair that transformed the ancient world.
  • The King Must Die
    by Mary Renault
    The ancient world of myth and legend takes on the trappings of living history in this second of Mary Renault's imaginative reconstructions. The imperishable story of Theseus, prince of Athens, and the Minotaur of Crete to which 14 Athenian boys and girls were yearly sacrificed, has a timeless quality of poignant drama which is heightened in her retelling.

Category: Reading Lists, Historical Fiction

Page last changed: November 09, 2012, at 01:19 PM EST.