Review – The Ides of March

Posted October 10, 2016 by Nicky in Reviews / 2 Comments

Cover of The Ides of March by Valerio Massimo ManfrediThe Ides of March, Valerio Massimo Manfredi

I’ve been meaning to try books by this author for ever so long (at least the last six years), so it was a little disappointing to finally get round to it and find it falling rather flat. It might be partly an issue of translation, but it just doesn’t read well to me — it feels choppy and overly filled with exposition; to be all about actions rather than thoughts and emotions — I guess what I mean is that it doesn’t seem to have any emotional life. If someone is worried, the reader is told they’re worried; there’s no need to guess at it, no attempt to show their worry through their actions or reveal it through dialogue.

The writing style honestly sucked any possible enjoyment out of this for me. I don’t know how you can make Caesar’s death boring — there’s so much you can do with signs and portents, with the unrest of the people around him. Instead, it just felt flat, and I didn’t believe in the cause of any of the characters. It’s a fairly standard thriller with historical trappings without that, which is not my thing.

Rating: 1/5

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2 responses to “Review – The Ides of March

  1. That is disappointing and as this is my favourite of his tragedies, I think I won’t read it. A shame.
    On motivation, and sightly off topic, I was reading ‘Rinaldo Rinaldini’ a couple of years ago (in translation, obviously; I don’t speak or read German), and even taking into account it was written in 1798, I was really disappointed at the lack of insight given to the reader into Rindalini’s motives…

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