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Flavia Albia is a private investigator, always drawn to an intriguing puzzle - even if it is put to her by her new husband's hostile ex-wife. On the Quirinal Hill, Clodia Volumnia, a very young girl with stars in her eyes, has died, amid suggestions that she was poisoned by a love potion. It will have been supplied by a local witch, who goes by the name of Pandora, though Albia learns that Pandora carries on a trade in herbal beauty products while hiding much more dangerous connections. Pandora's beloved grandson, a trainee hack lawyer, is one of the dead girl's empty-headed friends; can this be relevant?
As she homes in on the truth, Albia has to contend with the occult, organised crime, an unusual fertility symbol, and celebrity dining. She discovers the young girl was a handful; her father mediates in disputes, yet has divorced his grief-stricken wife and is now suing his own mother-in-law; Clodia's so-called friends were none too friendly. The supposedly sweet air of the Quirinal hides the smells of loose morality, casual betrayal and even gangland conflict. When a friend of her own is murdered, Albia determines to expose as much of this local sickness as she can - beginning with the truth about the death of little Clodia.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Yasmine Audientis on 08-02-18
Lindsey Davis is an absolute gem of an author, but I found it difficult to engage with this new Falco series - Flavia Albia is simply not my cup of tea, despite the nifty plot and excellent background detail of Pandora’s Boy, and the wide cast of character.
A pity that the burgeoning romance in the Falco series, between Flavia Albia and Helena’s brother, Aulus Aelianus could not have a happy ending.
As for the narration, least said, soonest mended.
By L Weale on 06-09-18
Well read and touching mystery
I have taken to Flavia Albia, a feisty, sensible and often worried heroine and Lindsey Davis's investigative stories that tell us a lot about ancient Rome as well as giving us something to puzzle over.
As I get older I know I prefer mystery stories to the competitive horror of how cruel one person can be to another. There are two deaths in this story, one bewildering and one utterly grim and a great deal about the Roman middle-class. I have listened twice, enjoying it even more the second time round.
The Flavia Albia Audible books have a couple of different readers. I don't have a favourite and think they all have their strengths. Jane Collingwood does a fine job with Pandora's Boy.