Happy New Year everyone.
My first post of the new year is a review for FURIES, a historical thriller by DL Johnstone, set in ancient Roman times. For those unfamiliar with Johnstone’s work, he is also the author of the bestselling crime thriller Chalk Valley.
Furies is a tale of greed and corruption, set in Alexandria in ancient Roman Times.
The story opens with the losses faced by Roman, Decimus Tarquitis Aculeo, a man of former wealth and stature. Questions surround the investments he made which have led to his ruin. Deserted by his family and friends, he is determined to find the man he blames for the disaster, the man he believes tricked him and stole his wealth, and recover what he has lost. The search leads Aculeo deep into the criminal world, where he must first face his own enemies and regain their trust.
As he hunts for the explanations behind his defeat, he learns shocking truths about the man he blames, and encounters violence from others who try to stop him. When he stumbles upon the body of a murdered slave at the temple of a God, and another body floating in a canal, he finds himself on the trail of a murderer, with only a strange type of healer to trust. As he gets closer to the murderer, he recognizes a connection in the clues to his own pursuit of his lost fortune.
The Author introduces the reader to a rich cast of characters and delves deep into the history of an ancient Roman city, providing a flavor of life in Alexandria, its commerce, beliefs, Gods, wisdom, knowledge, life of the poor, and the good and the evil behind its power. Some of the ancient names are difficult to pronounce, which some readers may find slows the pace a bit; however, the story moves well and includes plenty of unexpected surprises. The story appears well researched, and the author’s knowledge of the era in which he writes is impressive. The intrigue and appeal of the ancient world is evident in his book.
Johnstone builds the suspense and maintains the tension all the way through the book, provides an unexpected yet satisfying conclusion, and delivers a creative crime thriller.