29 Apr 2018

From the Dark to the Dawn by Alicia A. Willis

 Decadent Rome, 61 Anno Domini. The masters of the universe have crushed the Iceni rebellion with an iron hand, slaughtering and enslaving her people.

For Philip, his existence as a captive means living to hatred. He despises his rich, young master, resenting his life of servitude and the wrestling feats Marcus forces him to perform. Bitterness engulfs his soul until he only lives for the day when he will crush the might of Rome.

Then Christianity enters the picture. Taught by a Jewish breadmaker to know the man called Christus, Philip begins the struggle to forgive and honor his master. But forgiveness is not easy towards one who lives for himself.

Marcus Virginius knows nothing but power and pleasure. Destined to a successful career serving Nero in the Praetorian Guard, he wants no part of Christianity. And he is determined to crush Philip’s newfound faith – no matter what it takes.

Join Philip and Marcus in their journey of redemption, faith, and forgiveness. Is love enough to conquer hate? And will the light of the gospel ever surmount the darkness of Rome?

Persecution abounds – will the two young men survive its terrors and live to experience the bright hope of a new dawn?

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Very good read. Reminded me in parts of Ben Hur and Quo Vadis. Aside from some of the names, I believe it was also thoroughly researched: I was pleasantly surprised to find the names of some well-known Historians in the preface.

The beginning, set in Britannia in the aftermath of the revolt of British Queen Boudicca was also fascinating. Philip, the former British slave makes me wonder about the way Christianity might have come to the British Isles, although that is not what the story is about.

The story has a gospel message, but not so overwhelming that is ceases to be an enjoyable read, or just a vehicle for preaching.

Recommended for all those who enjoy Historical Fiction and stories set in Ancient Rome.

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