Steven Saylor's Roman mysteries (Roma sub rosa), featuring Gordianus the Finder, present sequential capsules of the history of the end of the Roman Republic.
In The Judgment of Caesar everything, both in the political world in which Gordianus mixes and the personal, comes together perfectly, without even a sense of loss.
"The House of the Vestals: The Investigations of Gordianus the Finder," by Steven Saylor, is a loosely related, delightful collection of short stories based on Roman and Egyptian customs, Herodotus, and the traditional mystery fare -- a healthy dose of fear, revenge and greed.
The mystery of an Egyptian philosopher's murder and its solution are almost as intriguing as Saylor's characterization of the familiar, colorful, historical figures of the former lovers, Clodia and Catullus.
Gordianus the Finder and his son-in-law Davus travel north from Rome to Massilia (Marseilles) in 49 B.C., which is under siege and starving because of an alliance mistakenly made with Pompey instead of Caesar.