The year is AD 133. Hadrian is Emperor of Rome and all its vast empire, including Britannia. The greater part of that island has long been under imperial rule and the Roman legions control most of the land, quelling uprisings and building new forts and towns. Around the fortress of Eboracum (York), a bustling garrison settlement is developing, while along the north-west frontier of Hadrian's empire, the legions are completing the construction of a mighty wall ... Introducing us to such a world is Senovara - by birth a member of the Parisi, but also the newly wedded wife of Quintus, a veteran of the 6th Legion Victrix. Settling in Quintus's home is both bewildering and awe-inspiring for Senovara as she seeks to adjust to Eboracum's cosmopolitan environment. Daily life in the settlement can be harsh: a constant struggle to provide fresh food, water and warmth. Yet there is much enjoyment to be had as well: pampering oneself at the public baths, listening to the tales of new friends, the excitement of religious festivals and regular news from the frontier. When a deadly fever sweeps through Eboracum, Senovara and her children are forced to flee to her brother's farm in the country, returning to what is, for her, a more familiar way of life, though for her children it is strange. But, despite all precautions, tragedy can and does strike ... Roman Britain is vividly portrayed in this fascinating and authentically detailed story - a deftly woven narrative of a family struggling to come to terms with new customs and with reconciling their cultural differences.
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