.It’s a funny thing about holidays in the country, but after only a few days away you feel as if you’ve been out of circulation for a month…

Marcus Corvinus is already restless after a couple of days in the Alban Hills, visiting his stepdaughter, Marilla; a regular seat in Pontius’s wineshop is all very well but bucolic leisure has its limits. So when he is asked to investigate the brutal slaying of Vettius Bolanus, one of the two candidates for the forthcoming censor’s elections, he jumps at the chance.

Corvinus feels sure there is a political motive for the murder, and the obvious suspect is Concordius, the rival candidate. But as he pursues his investigations, the obvious solution becomes less and less likely. Can Corvinus find his murderer before the Latin Festival raises the stakes? How do the Latin Nationalists fit into the picture? And what exactly is Meton the chef up to with Dassa the sheep? Marcus Corvinus doesn’t know the answers, either.

read the 1st chapter