I AM A BARBARIAN BY EDGAR RICE BURROUGHS

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These are the memoirs of Britannicus. Britannicus was the son of a chieftain of a tribe in Britannia that lost a war and was sold to the Belgae. Later the Belgae tribe was defeated by the Romans. He is spared because the young son of the legion’s commander desired him as his personal slave. So begins his life as the slave to a seven year old that was nicknamed by the soldiers in the legion as ‘Little Boots.’ He would grow up to be the mad emperor Caligula.

The memoirs chronicle his life among the Romans. Rome is depicted as a grand city but Roman civilization as decadent and corrupt. Everyone is conspiring to climb up the ladder to power and position. He witnesses the intrigue, gladiatorial games and chariot races.

Eventually his master Caligula becomes emperor and a reign of terror grips the empire. Caligula bankrupts the state with his extravagant lifestyle and mad projects. Finally in one of his mad moods he has a portion of the gladiatorial audience throw into the arena to be fed to wild animals. Finally he is assassinated with Britannicus being the first to plunge in the knife blade.

This is another of Burroughs pseudo historical novels. I am not familiar enough with Roman history to vouch for its historical accuracy. I will say that it is an excellent exciting story. The decadent civilization and the antics of Caligula and his family provide a fascinating story. This is a book I really enjoyed.

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