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Books I’ve Been Reading: the Eagle series

I am going to review this series as a whole, even though I haven’t read all of the books. The Eagle series is by Simon Scarrow and follows the story of two Roman soldiers, Macro and Cato. Macro is a centurion and has been in the army for many years, but Cato is a newbie and because of his imperial connections he is promoted to only one rank below Macro. Since he’s only 18, that really annoys the other legionaries and he has to deal with them teasing him and looking down on him, even through the later books. In each novel, Macro and Cato are faced with a different challenge as the army tries to conquer Britain.

So far I’ve read five of the books, and they are all great! The storyline in each one is very fast-paced and exciting, and there are many plot twists that you never would have guessed. The stakes are always high, and each book captures the tension really well, as no one can be sure if the Britons who swore allegiance to the Romans will really stay loyal. Macro and Cato are quite different characters, but they are good friends and both have very different personalities. We get inside Cato’s head quite a lot and see him mature into more of a proper soldier.

The battle scenes are spectacular, and the author describes the bloody brutality of war very well. He doesn’t gloss over the bad bits, and describes every severed limb and spilled intestine with gory detail. You can also imagine the scene really well, and your heart beats really fast when Macro or Cato is in danger. He’s amazing at describing the seething, intimidating mass of Britons and when they charge, I have to say it’s pretty scary!

Obviously, since they are involved in battles, many characters die. Some of them you do get to know and like, but it is war and you can’t be sure who’s going to die next. The author creates lots of believable characters, and some truly detestable ones. You feel strongly about many people, whether positive or negative. It gets you passionate, which is a good reaction to have about a book.

So overall, I give the whole series 10/10, and I recommend that you read it if you like historical, military or action-packed books, because this is all of them!

Your Roman blogger, Jaz

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