Palatine: The Four Emperors Series: Book I by L.J. Trafford – Review


Title – Palatine: The Four Emperors Series: Book I
Author – L. J. Trafford
Genre – Historical Fiction
Length – 428 Pages (Kindle)
Publication – 30th June 2015
My Rating – 5/5 Stars


Debauchery. Depravity. Decadence.Just everyday life at the imperial palace.Whilst Emperor Nero plays with his new water organ and a cross-dressing eunuch, his wily secretary Epaphroditus manages affairs of state. But dissent and rebellion are growing across the empire, and Nero is soon to discover playtime is over.Praetorian prefect Nymphidius Sabinus, disgusted by the moral degeneracy, secretly plots the overthrow of Nero’s court. Motivated by the traditional Roman values of valour and nobility, yet blinded by his own righteousness, Sabinus is ignorant of what he has unleashed – The Year of the Four Emperors.Palatine is the first in an enthralling four-book series about the tumultuous ‘Year of the Four Emperors’ which will appeal to fans of Lindsey Davis and George R. R. Martin.


I’m a big fan of historical fiction so when I was offered a review copy of this book I was very excited to say the least.

This book focuses on Emperor Nero and his eventual death after the Praetorian prefect Nymphidius Sabinus decides he’s had enough of his behaviour and gets the Praetorian Guard to desert him and back Galba as Emperor.

The author decided to write this book from a number of different perspectives which made it a very interesting read. I think that’s probably the thing I liked the most about the book.. the characters and the sheer number of them. Best of all, the story didn’t feel rushed/forced and flowed nicely from one person to another

I thought each character was handled well and was given depth as the story went on even though it was subtle.. when you finish the book and look back you can see the time that has been put into each of their stories.

Ok.. so you want me to tell you somethings I didn’t like.. Well…there’s nothing really.

For me this was a well-planned/written book that hooked me in. The way the author managed to fit so many little stories into the main story was brilliant! I particularly enjoyed any conversation involving Philo. His life is so wonderfully complicated. Not to spoil anything I won’t say much but he was by far my favourite person in the book. I’ve been left wanting more.

The good news is there are 3 more books planned and I’m looking forward to Galba arriving on the scene. With my limited knowledge of the man I expect the second book will be as good as the first if not better!

I can’t really comment on historical accuracy as I’m no expert but everything seems to fit with me so I hope anyone who enjoys historical fiction will give this book a read. I wasn’t disappointed and I believe you won’t be either

To view the book in more detail head to Goodreads, Karnac Books, or

4 thoughts on “Palatine: The Four Emperors Series: Book I by L.J. Trafford – Review

  1. Pingback: Very Nice Palatine Review | LJ Trafford

  2. Pingback: Galba’s Men by L. J. Trafford – Review | David's Book Blurg

  3. Pingback: Otho’s Regret by L. J. Trafford – Review | David's Book Blurg

  4. Pingback: Blog Tour – Vitellius’ Feast by L. J. Trafford (@TraffordLj) | David's Book Blurg

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