Jodie A. (Corpus Christi, TX)
I loved this book! It was entertaining and educational. I really enjoyed her explanations of the Roman words and customs. The characters were very interesting. I did not want to put it down!
Sheila D. (Brainerd, MN)
One of the must reads yet this year!
Michelle Moran has written a book that has left me with that feeling I have when I know I have read something wonderful. Well written… I entered at the point that Cleopatra and Marc Anthony are taking their own lives in order to resist captivity and learn of their three children who are left in the enemies hands. Three children, I am ashamed to say, that I did not know existed until this book.
And from that point on I am feasting on pages filled with the adventures of Alexander and Selene… historical fiction at a very fine level. I am in awe of the twins voices… as they speak I had to remind myself again and again of their age. The voices to me seamed older but I forget how much faster children grew up then. While they were 11, they spoke as though they were 15 or 16…
Vivid characters – I appreciated the list of who they were in the front of the book and I used that a lot as I became used to so any new names coming in at once, Octavian (Emperor and keeper of the children once he conquered their home), Octavia, his sister – a gentle soul who I grew to like. And so many more from the handsome Marcellus, to the puzzling Julia who drove me nuts, then I felt bad for her, then I was mad again… and oh – you have to love the characters that make you FEEL.
I adored this book. This is the first of Michelle’s work that I have read and I am ready for more. A fantastic read that I highly recommend to history lovers and historical fiction loves alike.
Cheryl D. (Angola, NY)
Enjoyable historical novel
I find this an interesting era of history, but it is one I know little about. Michelle Moran managed to bring the characters alive for me and sent me to various reference books to do further research. I am aware that conversations and even actions are based on fact but often contain a great deal of conjecture. Moran makes things appear true. I can accept them as being real and that makes this an enjoyable and satisfying read.
Elizabeth H. (Walnut Creek, CA)
Once again, as in Nefertiti, Michelle Moran brings ancient history to life. This story is told by Selene, Cleopatra's daughter. It starts with the defeat of Marc Antony's army in Egypt, and takes us to Rome where Selene and her brother Alexander are taken as captives. The culture of Rome at that time is brought vividly to life. Through Selene's eyes, we see what it was like to be a young person growing up in the household of Octavia, Octavian's sister. It was a time of danger and intrigue. I couldn't put this book down.
Maggie P. (Redmond, WA)
Historical fiction at it's finest
Michelle Moran is a very clever writer. Her use in this book of a first person point of view gives the reader a more intimate feel of the story. I would recommend this book to any one. The book has just enough history to keep it interesting and not bore you with too much information. Michelle Moran did a great job writing the book and I know you'll enjoy it.
Patricia S. (Chicago, IL)
Set in the years immediately following Queen Cleopatra's death, this book follows her daughter and surviving son through the twisting politics of early Imperial Rome. Impressive characterization and settings add to the attraction of an underused time period for historical novels.
Barbara S. (Kalamazoo, MI)
I’ve always been interested in Kleopatra (as she spelled her own name) and I’ve read at least one book about her, but I didn’t remember a daughter, so I was quite excited to get this book. I wasn’t disappointed.
Opening with the end of Kleopatra’s life and ending with Kleopatra’s daughter’s marriage, this book imagines what life would have been like for Kleopatra Selene, called Selene, in the years after her mother and father’s deaths.
Octavian takes Selene and her twin brother, Alexander, to his own court and they are treated as part of his extended family. They go to school, they make friends, they create lives for themselves.
If you’re a fan of historical fiction, you will find a lot to like about Cleopatra’s Daughter. Michelle Moran does a great job of making ancient Rome seem real and modern, while also maintaining its historical perspective.
There are similarities between ancient Rome and modern day United States that she points out in the Historical Note at the end, so you’ll definitely want to read that. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Kleopatra and ancient Roman history, she also includes an Afterword that fills you in on what happened to the rest of the characters after the end of the book.
I don’t rate that many books a 5, but I’d give this one a 5. I am going to get the author’s other books next. I can’t wait to see how she handles the life of Nefertiti.