Mark of the Gladiator by Heidi Belleau & Violetta Vane
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Historical romance, Ancient Rome 26 BCE m/m
Anazar ends up being contracted to train female gladiators after showing mercy in the arena. Anazar has two months to take demoralized, untested and obviously abused women and get them prepared to fight in that same arena. And to make matters worse his new master, Lucius Marianus demands perfection.
Anazar never expected to be eager to train the women but he is finding himself looking forward to the challenge more than a man whose sole motivation is self-preservation. Maybe it has something to do with his new master, Marianus, who is handsome, honorable, dignified and seems to be attracted to Anazar. Maybe as much as Anazar is attracted to Marianus.
Now there seems to be a rivalry between Marianus and his brother that seems to have caused a murder conspiracy. Anazar and his gladiatrices are caught in the middle of what is happening between the brothers. One of the brothers offers salvation but which one is the right one? The wrong one could easily cause their deaths. In a world were a slave’s life is worth less than the whims of a master or even the pleasures of the crowd it leave very little room for anything other than survival but can room be made for love? As a gladiator Anazar is near undefeatable but as a man he is in a much more precarious position. He learns that even the best armor and shield can protect against most things but cannot protect his heart.
This is a story that takes the reader back to ancient
Rome and brings the
period to life. It gives the reader a small window to view exactly how slaves
lived and how at any time their lives could be over on just the word of their
masters. With each word the world comes to vivid life and takes the reader on a
fantastic trip that will have reader sad to leave at the very end. If readers
enjoyed Spartacus they are sure to love this one if this is a genre they enjoy.
The characters are well written and the reader is able to see why they act in
certain situations. This is one story that will be sure to pull the reader in
and not let them go until the very end.
I give this one 5 red roses