Sunday, 20 January 2013

The Ides of April - New series by Lindsey Davis

Press Release



£18.99 Hodder & Stoughton hardback
The Ides of April (11th), 2013

The Ides of April is the first in a cracking new series of crime novels set in the Rome of the paranoid Emperor Domitian and featuring Flavia Albia, the adopted daughter of Lindsey Davis’s much loved character, Marcus Didius Falco.  Born in Britain, she sees Rome with fresh eyes, as a woman and an outsider.  Albia is now 28; she is a practised sleuth - tough, witty, feminine, scathing, politically aware, brave and an animal lover - something which is almost certain to get her into trouble during Rome’s archaic sacrificial rites…

The city is experiencing an epidemic of apparently random deaths, where victims don’t seem to realise they have been attacked.  With the authorities in denial, Albia is hired by a dead client’s relative to find the murderer.  Soon she is tripping over high-grade officials and the low-grade police force, some of whom want to use her talents, while others try to divert her investigations.  One seems intent on romance; though delighted, Albia must juggle this with having to make allies elsewhere for the case.  There are few clues.  The killer is clever, unpredictable, and uses a method so discreet it is barely discernible.  Will dogged detective work ever be enough to find him?

As the bodies mount, a festival for the goddess Ceres offers the killer new opportunities.  Albia finds herself in more danger on Rome’s cobbled streets then she could possibly have imagined, until a trap is set – a trap, which could go fatally wrong…

Historical novelist Lindsey Davis is best known for The Course of Honour, the true story of the Emperor Vespasian and his mistress Caenis, and for her twenty volume mystery series featuring Roman detective, Marcus Didius Falco, with its recent addition of Falco: the Official Companion, a cheery handbook for readers.  She has also written Rebels and Traitors, an epic novel set in the English Civil War and Commonwealth.  She has won the CWA Historical Dagger, Dagger in the Library, and a Sherlock for Falco as Best Detective.  She has been Honorary President of the Classical Association, Chair of the Crime Writers Association and Chair of the Society of Authors'.  In 2010, the city of Rome gave her the Premio Colosseo, awarded 'for enhancing the image of Rome' and in 2011, she was awarded the CWA Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement.

For further information contact Kerry Hood on 020 7873 6173 or


Flavia Albia is the adopted daughter of a famous investigating family. In defiance of tradition, she lives alone on the colourful Aventine Hill, and battles out a solo career in a male-dominated world. As a woman and an outsider, Albia has special insight into the best, and worst, of life in ancient Rome. A female client dies in mysterious circumstances. Albia investigates and discovers there have been many other strange deaths all over the city, yet she is warned off by the authorities. The vigils are incompetent. The local magistrate is otherwise engaged, organising the Games of Ceres, notorious for its ancient fox-burning ritual. Even Albia herself is preoccupied with a new love affair: Andronicus, an attractive archivist, offers all that a love-starved young widow can want, even though she knows better than to take him home to meet the parents...As the festival progresses, her neighbourhood descends into mayhem and becomes the heartless killer's territory. While Albia and her allies search for him, he stalks them through familiar byways and brings murder ever closer to home. The Ides of April is vintage Lindsey Davis, offering wit, intrigue, action and a brilliant new heroine who promises to be as celebrated as Marcus Didius Falco and Helena Justina, her fictional predecessors.

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