Margaret George biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Margaret George

Margaret George

Margaret George Biography

Margaret George is the author of six biographical novels, including The Memoirs of Cleopatra, Mary Called Magdalene, and Elizabeth I: A Novel. Her latest work of epic historical fiction is The Confessions of Young Nero (Berkley), the first part of a duology taking a more sympathetic look at the trials and tribulations of the infamous Roman Emperor. The novel seeks to resurrect Nero as a complicated man caught between ruling a vast empire and indulging in his passions for art, Hellenistic games and the women he loved.

Margaret George's website

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Interview

Margaret George discusses her novel, The Confessions of Young Nero, the first of two novels dedicated to the brief but eventful life of the titular Roman Emperor.

You've written fictional biographies of historical figures from Cleopatra to Henry VIII. Roman history is filled with fascinating, controversial characters. Why pick Nero?

Nero was calling out to me! He was trapped beneath the rubble of history, in spite of his name being a household one. Between Hollywood's portrayals and the catchphrase "Nero fiddled while Rome burned" (the butt of numerous modern political cartoons), the real Nero had vanished. I felt I had a mission to restore him to his rightful place in history.


Nero's historical reputation is at least partly composed of rumor and outright fiction. To paraphrase your novel, sometimes the stories that survive are the most memorable rather than the truest. How did you sort through these biased accounts and decide what to keep, discard or reinterpret?

It helps to have professional academic historians who are doing the same thing, and who showed me how to do likewise. I used to read historical accounts as if they were all true but slowly came to realize how flawed they are--they fail "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth" test rather badly (as do our modern news reports). Imagine if all you knew 2,000 years from now about Obama...

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Books by this Author

Books by Margaret George at BookBrowse
The Confessions of Young Nero jacket Elizabeth I jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Margaret George but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Lindsey Davis

    Lindsey Davis

    Lindsey Davis was born and raised in Birmingham, read English at Oxford, then joined the civil service. After thirteen years, her first novel (which she'd written for herself) was runner-up for the Georgette Heyer Historical ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Confessions of Young Nero

    Try:
    The Accusers
    by Lindsey Davis

  • Ruth Downie

    Ruth Downie

    In 2004, Ruth Downie won the Fay Weldon section of BBC3's End of Story competition. Her first novel, Medicus and the Disappearing Dancing Girls was published in the UK in 2006, and in the USA in 2007 (as simply Medicus). The ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Confessions of Young Nero

    Try:
    Medicus
    by Ruth Downie

We recommend 4 similar authors

View all 4 Readalikes

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