Why this book?
A Roman general makes his last stand against invading barbarians on the Rhine frontier. A classic in every sense of the word, Eagle in the Snow is in some ways a model for much of the serious historical fiction that followed its publication in 1970: deeply researched yet light-of-touch with arcane detail, action-packed yet always allowing character and emotion to take the foreground and guide the action. Paulinus Gaius Maximus has more than just the Germans to battle against: a pagan in a time of ascendant Christianity, a man of duty in a time of cowardice and self-dealing, thoughtful and deliberate when all around him act mindlessly. The book also excels in its clear-eyed depiction of military tactics, the hardships of winter campaigning, and the loneliness of the soldier far from home.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
A novel about General Maximus, one of the inspirations behind Ridley Scott's massively successful film GLADIATOR.
'Behind me I left my youth, my middle age, my wife and my happiness. I was a general now and I had only defeat or victory to look forward to. There was no middle way any longer, and I did not care.'
In the year AD 406 Rome was on the defensive everywhere, and a single Roman legion stood desperate guard on the Empire's Rhine frontier. Maximus, the legion's commander, is urged to proclaim himself emperor, but he stands by his concept of duty…