Wednesday, 29 December 2010
See Delphi and Die by Lindsay Davis
I think my favourite Falco novel is the one I am reading at the time, and See Delphi and Die is certainly up to Davis's usual high standard. She has certainly coloured my view of ancient Rome and its history, which is otherwise a compilation of bits of Pliny and Julius Caesar from school Latin lessons and Graves' I, Claudius (or, as it seems to be known to all of us of a certain age, I, Clavdivs), with perhaps a less welcome addition of bits I can't erase from my mind from Satyricon (both book and film). There's slightly less poison around in Davis's version, which is restful, but there's always a diverting mix of pleasant and unpleasant people and, in the course of twenty books, some truly heart-stopping moments.
I complained recently about the lack of a map in an otherwise excellent book. We do, here, have a map of the Pelopponese, but the author informs us, rather severely, that maps of the various cities visited - Delphi, Athens, etc - are readily available elsewhere, and difficult to reproduce at a suitable scale. That's fine, I'm a reasonable person. I can accept that. How about a portrait of the dog instead?