(From the publisher):
Nothing's certain except death and taxes. Catching tax evaders for the Emperor Vespasian looks like a plum position for Marcus Didius Falco, who has teamed up with his old boss, Anacrites, the crotchety chief spy of Rome. Soon, however, Falco is bogged down in bureaucracy, stuck at his stylus, and longing for a good murder to investigate.
He gets one when someone kills Leonidas, the Empire's official executioner. Feared by plebeians and citizens alike, Leonidas administered justice with a swift, sure blow. Then he ate the offender. Now this king of beasts lies stabbed to death in his cage.
Sniffing around for clues, Falco is soon led into the rowdy, decadent world of gladiators and bestiarii, fighters who specialize in contests against animals. Falco finds that it's dark and dangerous in the tunnels under the arena - and even blacker in the desperate souls of those who must kill or be killed each time the games begin. Yet no one has a motive for slaughtering a lion after hours.
The unexpected slaying of the most glamorous gladiator in the city is another matter. Now Falco has a high-profile crime to handle.
Original title: Two for the Lions
Genre: Fiction→ Crime and Mystery→ Detective Story and Detectives→ Historical
Fiction→ Historical→ Ancient World (Greece, Rome, etc)→ Rome