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Marius' Mules I: The Invasion of Gaul (English Edition) [Kindle Edition]

S.J.A. Turney
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It is 58 BC and the mighty Tenth Legion, camped in Northern Italy, prepare for the arrival of the most notorious general in Roman history: Julius Caesar.

Marcus Falerius Fronto, commander of the Tenth is a career soldier and long-time companion of Caesar's. Despite his desire for the simplicity of the military life, he cannot help but be drawn into intrigue and politics as Caesar engineers a motive to invade the lands of Gaul.

Fronto is about to discover that politics can be as dangerous as battle, that old enemies can be trusted more than new friends, and that standing close to such a shining figure as Caesar, even the most ethical of men risk being burned.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

I live with my wife, my son and two (close approximations of) dogs in rural North Yorkshire, where my wife and I both grew up, surrounded by friends and family. A born and bred Yorkshireman with a love of the country, I cannot envisage spending my life anywhere else, though my anchor is sometimes tested as the wanderlust hits and we travel wherever I can find the breathtaking remains of the classical world. I have a love of travel and history, architecture and writing and those four interact well enough to keep me almost permanently busy. Since leaving school and University, I have tried a great number of careers, including car sales, insurance, software engineering, computer network management, civil service and even painting and decorating sales. I have lived in four counties and travelled as widely as time and budget allowed and find myself, on the cusp of my fortieth year, back where I began and finally doing something I love. Having written a number of unpublished short stories in my early days, I decided back in 2003 to try and write a full length novel. That was the start of Marius' Mules. Being a lover of Roman history, I decided to combine my love of writing and my love of classical history. Marius' Mules was followed two years later by Interregnum, my attempt to create a new fantasy story still with a heavy flavour of Rome. Since then, the success and popularity of both has spawned sequels to each work, with three tales in each series so far and more planned.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 936 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 439 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 1481082884
  • Verlag: Victrix Books; Auflage: 2nd (18. November 2010)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B004EYT3N8
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Aktiviert
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.2 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (4 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #41.270 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Der Roman ist grob im Stile der Under the Eagle Serie von Simon Scarrow geschrieben. Er handelt zur Zeit der Eroberung Galliens durch Cäsar. Im Gegensatz zu Scarrows Serie wird die Handlung überwiegend aus Sicht der höheren Offiziere, insbesondere aus Sicht des imaginären Legionslegaten Fronto geschildert.

Die Handlung beschränkt sich hauptsächlich auf das Militärische. Politische Intrigen werden höchstens am Rande behandelt. Hier hätte man gerade in dieser Epoche ruhig mehr ins Detail gehen können. Auch bleiben die Charaktere etwas flach.

Als störend empfand ich, dass die einzige Freizeitbeschäftigung des Hauptprotagonisten das Trinken bis zur Besinnungslosigkeit zu sein scheint. Fast jeder Abend im Buch endet damit, dass sich Fronto entweder alleine oder mit anderen Offizieren volllaufen lässt, und er am nächsten Morgen mit den Nachwirkungen zu kämpfen hat. Da könnte sich Turney ruhig mal etwas anderes einfallen lassen.

Insgesamt gesehen ist das Buch mal ganz nett für zwischendurch. Insbesondere zu dem günstigen Preis. Es kommt aber nicht an die Bücher von Simon Scarrow heran.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Ok for passing time 18. August 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I was looking for something light and easy reading. This one meets the requirements. The historical frame is followed well enough and so on. Little bit monotonic but still ok.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen Nicht schlecht! 29. September 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Grundsätzlich ein gutes Buch. Es hat gewisse Längen und das benutzte Englisch ist gewöhnungsbedürftig. Außerdem ist es hilfreich wenn mann sich seeehr für römische Geschichte interessiert. Ich veruche auch den 2. Band.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Bellum Gallicum mal anders 20. November 2014
Von Nici
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
Besser wie Bellum Gallicum .-).
Bernhard Cromwell auf römisch. Sharpe ist aber immer noch besser.
Wer historische Romane mag und etwas Blut verträgt kann zugreifen.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.0 von 5 Sternen  140 Rezensionen
84 von 89 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Good Roman Fiction 22. Dezember 2009
Von Ronin - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Marius' Mules is a good historical fiction novel that follows Caesar's conquest of Gaul, starting in 58BC. I have a little trouble with the name of the book, as it suggests the time of Marius and Sulla when something alluding to Caesar would feel more appropriate. The title is a reference to a legionary reform of Gaius Marius just before Caesar's birth, where the legionaries consolidated their personal kit so it could be carried individually on the march. Since some of the legions under Caesar's command in Gaul were born in the time of Marius, Caesar's uncle, it is a theme of the book.

The characters are believable and the historical content is quite good with lots of attention to detail that does not come at the expense of a good story. Turney does a good job of depicting the campaigns primarily through the eyes of senior legates and centurions, which of course brings people like Caesar and Labienus into the scenes without having them dominate the landscape. Labienus could certainly have played a bigger role, and as a character I would say he was grossly under-utilized.

I don't want to spoil the story by going into too much detail, and while my review focuses on some criticisms I want to stress that I enjoyed it very much. At times I found myself differing with the author's depiction of real characters and also some of the political motivations surrounding the events, but overall it is a very noble effort and I rarely read a historical fiction where this is not an issue. Having read this on the tail of Conn Iggulden's absolute garbage "Emperor" series, I welcomed the relief of discovering my trauma is not permanent and that I could enjoy a Caesar story once again.

There is one glaring problem with this book: it reads like a first draft that was not edited. We can all deal with a typo here and there, but, Marius' Mules reads like an unpolished DIY rather than a professional novel. This is really a shame because all the potential for a great book is present. There is literally a lack of editing visible on virtually every other page, from poor punctuation to double words or too many words and the occasional sentence that makes little or no sense. This makes for a very awkward read at times, and I found myself being conscious of it more than I would prefer, and I happily would have solved this problem for a free copy of the book.

A dialog of Caesar's, like, "This (money) is to be used sparingly, as it has to last, but should certainly be enough to cover these units", does not sound like the efficient Caesar I have come to know from the primary sources. A good editor would have axed "as it has to last". Or, "I can't really understand" instead of "I don't understand". Or, "I will want you commanding the cavalry" instead of "I want you commanding the cavalry" or "you will command the cavalry". I just opened the book and these jumped out at me; a few examples. Not nearly the most egregious but I wasn't taking notes.

Also, I have to say the dialog could certainly have been better, and at times it feels too modern. For example, a centurion at one point says something to the effect of, "Ours is not to reason why, it is to do or die". If I am not mistaken, this is from the Charge of the Light Brigade poem written in 1854. Perhaps it is appropriate, but something more original would be appreciated.

Overall I very much enjoyed this story, and with some extra editing it has the potential to be high quality historical fiction. On balance my complaints are minor, and I recommend people support this author by giving it a chance and hopefully he can tighten it up in the future.
9 von 9 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Acceptable beginning... 19. Mai 2013
Von David - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
I found this novel to be acceptable, if a bit of a slog to get through. With that said, I should point out that the series improves remarkably in the second and third novels, so am glad I stuck with this one. Part of my lack of interest in the first part was that I had difficulty relating to the main character. As a Legate, Fronto is obviously an alcoholic which bothered me the most towards the end when it seems like the author had him drinking himself into a stupor every other page. In addition he was not a very sympathetic, common man, character who the author overly self-aggrandized in my opinion. There were a fair number of editing errors in the edition which distracted from the continuity as well. Again, glad I stuck with it though since it lays the foundation for the much better books later in the series.
10 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Realistic and Still Enjoyable 8. März 2013
Von James Dainis - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
If one wants to get a good idea of what it was like to be in the Roman legions, this book will do that. Not only are there the usual blood and gore fight scenes but there are also tactical situations that arise and must be handled as the battles progress. There are also problems of logistics and the handling of one's soldiers to keep them battle ready. The main characters themselves are very real as are their dialogue and interaction with each other.

Marius Fronto is a legate or commander of an entire legion of about 5,000 soldiers. That would require the rank of brigadier general today. As such, he is a close confidant and friend of Julius Caesar. That helps to give the reader some interesting insight into the political aspects of the Gaul invasion. But, I cannot see a person of that rank leading a dozen men on a commando raid to steal horses. Nor can I see him in a stadium surrounded by the entire army of 30,000 men to watch him in man to man gladiatorial combat to the death with an army traitor. Still, those are minor points which did not prevent me from greatly enjoying this book. I have already bought the next two books in the series.
26 von 35 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Meticulous 20. Juli 2009
Von P. J. B. - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Marius's Mules presents a meticulous attention to detail and to historic fact . But the line between fact and fiction is seamless and invisible thus offering an entertaining and unpatronising read. The characters, led by the worn persona of Fronto are supremely 'everyman' and therefore utterly believable.
Whilst one has historically been informed that Roman conquests were the result of the foresight and brilliance of men like Caesar, this book flies in the face of that concept, revealing a far more likely idea . . . that perhaps the ingenuity was in Caesar's weary officers, just as the muscle and effort came from the legions of men who fought for Rome.
Turney gives us idiosyncratic men of wry humour, with a healthy disrespect for authority and an even healthier belief that 'what doesn't kill one makes one stronger.'
The battle scenes are delivered with pace, movement and colour, full of cinematographic grandeur and laden with dust, guts and bravery.
I am ignorant of much of ancient history, but this novel offered so much information in such a measured way that it is impossible not to recommend it. Five stars.
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen An excellent read 23. April 2012
Von William F. Heuisler - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
All three of the Marius' Mules books are fast paced, well characterized and provide enough tension to keep the reader fully engaged. Reading Caesar's Gallic Wars through the jaded eyes of Legate Fronto is exciting and amusing. Fronto describes logistics and people well, captures high points and describes all those famous battles with refreshing clarity and just the right amount of brevity.
I am a fan of Conn Iggulden and Bernard Cornwell. Turney's battles are nearly as good as Cornwell's and his characters are nearly as interesting as Iggulden's. He gets better with each book, and his occasional editing slips are becoming rarer. I'm impatient for the next book in Turney's Marius' Mules series. Bill Heuisler, author of "Mercenary's Tale: fighting Fidel Castro" on Amazon.
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