Under the Flavian Emperors the Roman public's hunger for gladiatorial combat has never been greater. The Emperor Domitian's passion for novelty and variety in the arena has given rise to a very different kind of warrior: the Gladiatrix. Lysandra, member of an ancient Spartan sect of warrior priestesses, is the sole survivor of a shipwreck off the ...
Under the Flavian Emperors the Roman public's hunger for gladiatorial combat has never been greater. The Emperor Domitian's passion for novelty and variety in the arena has given rise to a very different kind of warrior: the Gladiatrix. Lysandra, member of an ancient Spartan sect of warrior priestesses, is the sole survivor of a shipwreck off the coast of Asia Minor who finds herself the property of Lucius Balbus owner of the foremost Ludus for female gladiators in the Eastern Empire. Lysandra's Spartan pride refuses to accept her new status as a slave. Her deadly combat skills not only enable her to survive but win the adoration of the crowds, the respect of her Lanista, Balbus, and the admiration of Sextus Julius Frontinus, the provincial governor. But Lysandra's hubris has stirred up the ethnic factions of the ludus attracting the enmity of the Dacian warrior, Sorina, Gladiatrix Prima and leader of the Barbarian faction as well as inciting the hatred of the sadistic Numidian trainer Nastasen. Meanwhile Frontinus and Balbus plan the ultimate combat spectacle for the visit of the emperor's emissary, Trajanus, that will involve Lysandra in her greatest and deadliest trial.
Publishers Weekly, 2008-12-01 An ancient pillar depicting two female gladiators gives Whitfield the inspiration for his first novel, an action-packed, blood-soaked and sexy sapphic first-century saga. Fans of epic cat fights, girl-on-girl action, war strategy and bloody combat will hardly be put off by the stilted language and clunky character work that litter the way as a shipwrecked Spartan priestess, Lysandra, is forced into combat as a female gladiator. Meanwhile, her lover, the stunning Gladiatrix Secunda Eirianwen, and mean-as-a-snake veteran warrior Sorina mix it up Roman-style for slave owner Lucius Balbus, who runs the lucrative gladiatrix games. Lysandra rises through the ranks, her eyes on buying her freedom, but before she can free herself, she must engage in a breathless, knock-down, drag-out big-screen battle with Sorina. Think: girls gone wild-with swords. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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