Pompeii – by Robert Harris – independent book review – Historical Fiction (Ancient Rome)

An historical novel about Pompeii? How could I go wrong? The answer – easily! Awarded two stars on Goodreads.

Somehow this novel managed to make the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius and the burial of both Pompeii and Herculaneum downright boring. Probably because the first 3/4ths of the book happen BEFORE the eruption.

In fact, most of the story is about an engineer trying to figure out how to fix an aqueduct and prevent a severe water shortage — when all the time, the actual problem results from early geological changes that signal the volcano is about to erupt.

I wound up skipping large sections of the narrative, which might make my review a bit unfair. But that’s the way it goes.

Robert Harris
Photo from Wikipedia

More about the author, Robert Harris.