Author(s): Ian Ross
The epic first instalment in a sequence of novels set at the end of the Roman Empire, during the reign of the Emperor Constantine. Centurion Aurelius Castus - once a soldier in the elite legions of the Danube - believes his glory days are over, as he finds himself in the cold, grey wastes of northern Britain, battling to protect an empire in decline. When the king of the Picts dies in mysterious circumstances, Castus is selected to guard the Roman envoy sent to negotiate with the barbarians beyond Hadrian's Wall. Here he will face the supreme challenge of command, in a mission riven with bloodshed and treachery, that tests his honour to the limit. As he struggles to avert disaster and keep his promise to a woman he has sworn to protect, Castus discovers that nothing about this doomed enterprise was ever what it seemed.
'Hugely enjoyable. The author winds up tension into an explosion of fast-paced events' Conn Iggulden. 'Ian Ross blazes in the world of Empire and legions ... This is up there with Harry Sidebottom and Ben Kane' M.C. Scott. 'A thumping good read, well-crafted, atmospheric and throughly enjoyable ... Where's the next volume, please?' Ben Kane. 'An action-packed, steamroller of a novel from its opening pages. Aurelius Castus attracts trouble like a corpse attracts flies and he ensures that this is a breathless, exciting read. Ian Ross, pulling us behind him, dives headfirst into the uneasiness of late Roman Britain ... If you enjoy action-packed Roman military fiction, then you'll most certainly enjoy War at the Edge of the World' For Winter Nights. 'Castus Aurelius bursts onto the hist-fict scene with a series panache rarely seen this early, leaving us in hope that he lives on for many more adventures (many, many, many more)' The Book Bag. 'Hugely exciting, the first in what promises to be a gripping sequence of books about a period in the history of Roman Britain that is often overlooked by novelists. His evocation of the dangerous borderland between the civilisation of Rome and the realms of the supposedly barbaric Picts is entirely convincing, and Catus [...] serves as an appealing hero. His further adventures are eagerly awaited' BBC History Magazine.
Ian Ross has been researching and writing about the later Roman world and its army for over a decade. He spent a year in Italy teaching English, but now lives in Bath.