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December 31st, 2012 by Anthony Riches

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  1. james albano says:

    My friends and I have been reading your Empire series from the beginning and we all just finished book 9. For one of the few times in our life, we all agree on one thing…..you have lost your way. What mad wounds of Honor and Arrows of Fury so good and so powerful were the outstanding descriptions of the battles and battlefields. Since then, a a couple of exceptions, the series is becoming no more than one adventure yarn after another….Marcus running amok in Rome, tracking down a bandit, kidnapping a German witch etc. and quite frankly, action yarns are a dime a dozen.
    Please get back to what made your name and the Empire series so good……..

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Hi James

      An interesting piece of feedback and thanks. There’s fair smattering of both styles, I guess. Book 8 was full on battle, book 10 is pretty much too. Book 12 (which I’m writing now) kicks off into the civil wars of 193 – 197AD, so you can expect a lot of battlefield action from there onwards. Just to pick up on a comment, I don’t agree that I’ve lost my way (although you have every right not to like the way I’ve always planned to go, combining military action with imperial intrigue), and I’d venture to suggest that the period in question isn’t the non-stop gore fest that would be needed to support that. Oh, and if you want battlefield action, have you read the Centurions yet? It’s a little slow starting (the backstory takes a while to lay out), but when it gets going it’s non-stop battlefield tango all the way to the end.

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  2. Alan Hudson says:

    Just started Empire X which once again is a very riveting read as the rest of the series have been. I am puzzled though why the blurb on the back of the book refers to Praetorian Maturnus yet within the book his name becomes Maternus. Did somebody fail to notice this and correct the cover ?

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Looks to me like you found a typo! And no, I doubt it was spotted by anyone else… Send me your address for a copy of the new book when it comes out (the traditional typo spotter’s reward round here)

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  3. Paul Hadley says:

    Just a thank you for making the past few weeks more bearable even though I live in rural Suffolk. I discovered the Empire series on 22 March and having devoured everything Roman by Cornwell and Scarrow hope that you will see me out of “lockdown”.
    A great read, thanks
    Paul

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Hi Paul, yes, it’s lovely here (in rural Suffolk, I’m a few miles from Ipswich), makes it a bit easier when you can wander off into the green. Hope you enjoy the series!

  4. John Hunter says:

    Hello Anthony,
    I’ve just read “The Secret Diary of Eleanor Cobham.
    I enjoyed it immensely.
    I went on search for her and found out a bit more which I did eventually find was covered in the story.
    Included in the search was the factor, that there was actually a secret diary found, when they were doing renovations at Beaumaris Castle.
    That set me wondering, so I ask the question.
    Did you have access to this diary, when writing Eleanor’s story.
    I’m curious to know, due to the factor of it having been written in code.
    I’ve been reading the Empire series for quite some time and really enjoy it too.

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Aha – you have the Wrong Riches 🙂

      Tony Riches is a writer in a later period, and I think your question is addressed to him! What’s even worse is that we look quite a lot like each other!

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  5. John Dowling says:

    Anthony, please correct me if I’ve taken something the wrong way.
    At the end of The Emperors Knives, Velox was still alive but in The Scorpions Strike, reference is made to ‘one of them the last member of the gang of assassins I was talking about a moment ago, the other his brother – had met their ends within days of each other.’. I’m confused.
    Stay safe and well in these times.

    Regards,
    John Dowling

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Ooh, good question John. And you’re right in the context of the book’s narrative. I guess my internal musings as to his likely fate got the better of me. For spotting the error, send me an address and I’ll send you a signed book.

      Cheers,

      Tony.

      1. John Dowling says:

        Anthony,
        thank you very much for that unexpectedly generous reply and offer.
        My address is
        John Dowling
        84 Browning Road
        Fleet
        Hampshire
        GU52 0YJ.

        As I said ‘Stay safe’.

        Regards,
        John

        1. Anthony Riches says:

          Thanks John, I’ll send a copy of the next one when I get some. Might be a month or three.

  6. james m albano says:

    I have enjoyed your Empire series of books and am currently going to begin Book 5…The Wolfs Gold. I do not know if this question is answered in your future Empire books but I think there is one glaring omission to the series so far.
    Why is there no map of the Roman Empire in your books? As your series takes place in a number of different provinces, there should be a one or two page map of the Roman Empire showing the provinces with the province featured in the story highlighted. While you explain where the story is set, I think something visual would be far more instructive. Got to go…….starting The Wolfs Gold!

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Good question – I guess we just never thought to provide that wide view context…probably because there’s such a multiplicity of maps on the web. I’ll pass the feedback on though!

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  7. David Brown says:

    Dear Mr Riches I have read the empire and also the Centurions series which I thought were both fantastic but would like to know about the legions of at least the names of them are they real or fictitious and I just say how much I look forward to the next series of empire.

    Best Regards

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Huge apologies for the slow response – I’ve not been getting notifications from the website! And all the legions I mention are 100% genuine.

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  8. Mel Diack MBE says:

    Hello Anthony Enjoying your Centurions Series but as advised to look on your website for the three questions regarding the chance to win a Roman gold coin but can’t find the questions. When you can you please direct me to these?
    Much appreciated.

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Huge apologies for the slow response – I’ve not been getting notifications from the website! That competition is long over I’m afraid – with one very happy winner. Glad you’re liking the series!

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  9. DAVE REDFERN says:

    Love the books, very close to an army feel ( brothers in arms feel ). Can you let us know when the next one is out?cant wait as I have got the whole Empire series.

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Huge apologies for the slow response – I’ve not been getting notifications from the website! The next one’s out in October this year, I believe. Hope you like it!

      Cheers,

      Tony.

  10. Richard Oakley says:

    I’be read various books in your Empire series and am always struck by your use of the 1st and 2nd Tungrians. Interesting couple of units. Usually brigaded together and were unusual in each comprising 1000 infantry and 1000 cavalry. Or so I’ve read. You have them a 2 units of 10 centuries each. There’s some debate, I think, about whether they were all double strength centuries. Certainly they seemed to be used a troubleshooting unit after the peace in 180.

    It’s fashionable to decry Commodus as a coward, but about three quarters of the Roman army had been fighting a fierce campaign over 4 years placing strains on frontier provinces that were still recovering from plague.The situation you describe in The Scorpion’s strike, you’ve got over taxed, huge food requirements across the Danube and Rhine frontiers. In the rest of the empire, you’ve a constant demand for men and money and too few troops to deal with brigands. It’s no real surprise that Palmyra is being built up, to counter balance the number of Imperial forces withdrawn west, to deter the Parthians. it’s quite possible that the Empire could have imploded had Commodus not made peace.

    1. Anthony Riches says:

      Huge apologies for the slow response – I’ve not been getting notifications from the website! All fair comments, Commodus was of course painted as a coward by the men who followed him. Although if half the things he’s supposed to have done are true, he wasn’t the most ‘fit’ emperor!.

      Cheers,

      Tony.

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