• by Adrian Goldsworthy
  • Narrated by Derek Perkins
  • 24 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Tracing the extraordinary trajectory of Julius Caesar's life, Adrian Goldsworthy covers not only the great Roman emperor's accomplishments as charismatic orator, conquering general, and powerful dictator but also lesser-known chapters. Ultimately, Goldsworthy realizes the full complexity of Caesar's character and shows why his political and military leadership continues to resonate some 2,000 years later. In this landmark biography, Goldsworthy examines Caesar as a military leader, as well as his other roles, and places his subject firmly within the context of Roman society in the first century B.C.


What the Critics Say

"More compellingly than most biographies, Goldsworthy's exhaustive, lucid, elegantly written life makes its subject the embodiment of his age." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

"Via Mea"

I trust Google translated "My Way" correctly the way, with the Sinatran vibe it connotes. I think a very even-handed look at an historical figure who's often been characterized as a power-hungry madman, setting the record straight on his case against the aristocrats of Rome. Goldsworthy paints a vivid picture of Roman political life circa 1st century BCE, how it sat on a figurative powder keg bound to be lit by any number of cravenly ambitious men, and how the events of 49 BCE conspired to make Caesar the one who crosses the Rubicon. The book also excellently portrays Caesar's generation of peers coming of age during the Social Wars, the bloody Sullan/Marian civil wars and Spartacus' uprising, when many of the Republic's ancient checks and balances were irreparably damaged. No surprise many saw use of violent force the only way to power while others, haunted by the Sullan/Marian dictatorships' recurrence, doubled down on stamping out any attempt at one man gaining special powers at the expense of the public good.

My only complaint (and this is due to my own laziness) is the middle third's concentration on the Gallic Wars. All those tribe names begin to sound the same after awhile and there's lots of talk about building camp and gathering supplies. I'm nitpicking really, b/c the Gallic campaigns are what forged Caesar the military genius- gave him his connection to his legions and in the process merely changed the couse of Western European history forever.

Derek Perkins narration is superb. Adrian Goldworthy's writing and research are superb.

Hail Imperator!
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- Steven

I Bought, I Listened, I Finished

Every March 15 I think about Julius Caesar, but since I only have a few thoughts, I decided that a 25 hour book would fill some gaps. As expected, it’s jam-packed with military battles and the political intrigue of the Roman Senate. But this book also shares details that left me in shock. For example, there was the widespread practice among Roman Senators of seducing a rival’s wife to gain a political advantage. Also, as a demonstration of leniency following a bloody battle, to cut off the hands of the defeated army and setting the soldiers free. I was also surprised by Caesar and Cleopatra’s motivations for becoming friends with benefits. And finally, the narration is delivered with an academic voice that frequently reminds us that demeaning, mutilating and using others was very acceptable in the ancient world.
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- Connor "Enjoy the adventure"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-12-2014
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio