The third and final season of the hit Starz series Spartacus doesn’t air until January leaving fans yearning for some gladiatorial combat. They’ll find plenty in this novel based on the series. It’s the perfect way to pass the time until the show returns.
Spartacus Morituri takes place during the first season of the series. This means Spartacus is the champion of Capua, Batiatus is alive and kicking, and the focus is on the gladiators and political back-stabbing.
Hieronymus is the new lanista in Capua and he’s determined to make a name for himself with his gladiators. He’s also extremely well-funded, being backed by the real-world historical figure of Marcus Licinius Crassus. While battles rage in the arena, both Batiatus’s and Solonius’s gladiators are getting mysteriously sick which puts them at deadly disadvantage.
As rumors swirl about the cause of the illness, it’s left to Spartacus to discover the truth. He must dig through the intrigues and lies that surround them all if he’s to have any hope of saving his fellow gladiators, and himself, from Hieronymus’s ruthless Morituri gladiators.
The plot reads like something right out of the series, but it’s the writing that truly captures the feel of the show. You can just see Batiatus swearing and sneering at his slaves and anyone who gets in his way. He’s completely crass and arrogant just as you’d expect. And as for the battles, no blood and guts are spared.
Writer Mark Morris creates vivid scenes of carnage in the arena with battles described in gloriously gory detail. Much like the show, this is not for those with a weak constitution. Morris has written a new story, but one that’s in perfect keeping with the tone and character of the series.
Spartacus Morituri ($7.99) is available now and will provide fans with the perfect mix of blood and guts, sex, and intrigue to tide them over until January.
I was provided with this book for review purposes.