Review: I, ClaudiusEditorial Review - Bookreporter.com
Considered an idiot because of his physical infirmities, Claudius survived the intrigues and poisonings of the reigns of Augustus, Tiberius, and the Mad Caligula to become emperor in 41 AD A masterpiece. Read full review
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Reviewed October 1999
Wow, what a history this man must have had, to have lived through so many emperors and to have such a lineage to brag about. He was the grandson of Cleopatra and the stepson to Emperor Agustus. this biography has little to do with his life but with the people and events he was a witness to. His grandmother, Livia was the center of the book as she was the most powerful person in Roman history at that time. She controlled everyone's lives but always from behind the scenes. Claudius survives all others and sees the reign of his nephew, Caligula, was was evil and insane. The names and constant deaths and births can make this confusing reading, but Claudius tries to remind you of who's who. For example a person might be introduced again named Cassis and you have forgotten who that is, Caludius will say..."remember he is the guard who faught against the Roman at the games and won."
I really enjoyed this type of writing and may other writers could be helped with this style. In the end when Caligula is killing everyone off I was annoyed that people were still left to make Claudius Emperor. But is this fiction or a historical work? This book made it to the top 100 of the "100 best English-Language Novels of the 20th Century" according to the editorial board of the Modern Library..