Tag Archives: Praetorian

Praetorian: The Price of Treason by S.J.A Turney – Review


Title – Praetorian: The Price of Treason
Author – S.J.A. Turney
Genre – Historical Fiction
Length – 342 Pages
Publication – 17th December 2015
My Rating – 4/5 Stars


Two years have passed since the emperor’s loyal Praetorian guardsman Gnaeus Marcius Rustius Rufinus foiled Lucilla’s great assassination plot. Plagued by the ghosts of his past, Rufinus has enacted his own form of justice upon the praetorian cavalrymen who murdered the imperial agent Dis two years earlier.

But the Fates will not let Rufinus rest. Rome is beginning to seethe with rumour and conspiracy as Perennis, the prefect of the Praetorian Guard, and Cleander, the imperial chamberlain, continue to play their ‘great game.’ With the tide of opinion turning against their commander, Rufinus and his friends embark upon a mission to save the Prefect’s family, only to uncover a plot that runs deep… to the very heart of the empire. Armed with rare and dangerous evidence, Rufinus faces insurmountable odds in an attempt to bring the truth to light. To save his prefect. To save Rome. To save everyone he cares about.


So we are back with Rufinus.. I’ve been looking forward to this day since I finished the first book and I wasn’t disappointed. Speaking of which click here to read my review of Praetorian – The Great Game

It’s been two years since Rufinus spoilt plans to usurp the emperor and it’s clearly been a hard two years as we see our hero has fallen from grace a little. Rufinus has one thing on his mind.. Revenge…

The book starts strongly with Rufinus out to get one of the cavalrymen who killed the frumentarius Dis in the previous book. The need for vengeance is strong and I can see this becoming a theme throughout the series.. and I like it.

The main focus of this tale though is based on Perennis and Cleander, I won’t spoil what turns out to be a fascinating read but lines are drawn, trust tested to the limits and not everyone will make it out alive that’s for sure.

So you want to know some good things about the book. Firstly Acheron is back.. I love that hound 🙂

We also see a lot of faces from the previous tale turn again which gave a greater depth to the tale, friendships have clearly grown in the two years.. some more than others. It was great to see the return of such characters as Peteos (the young boy who helped Rufinus in the first book)

We also see new characters introduced like Publis who I initially didn’t like but turned out to be the shining star in the book along with Cestius.. a new frumentarius for us to enjoy.

These new and old characters along with the well-researched and interesting plot lead to what I can only say is one hell of a sequel!
Throughout the story it felt I was reading a similar tale as the first book. Not that anything is the same, more that the undertone of urgency is always there. The book builds up until this final explosion of action. Superb!

So you want to know where the 4* rating comes from.. well one person in this book gets overlooked I felt.. Senova the love interest of Rufinus. It’s been two years and he’s hardly spoke to her. After the first book I just expected her to have a bigger part but if you read the story you can see why she doesn’t get much page time.. she just doesn’t fit in with the action. On a good note the ending of the book leaves me in no doubt she will return in book 3 and hopefully we will see more happen between the two of them.

Another excellent book from S.J.A. Turney!

The book is due for release on the 17th December! Go on Pre-order your copy now! – Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com 

Praetorian: The Great Game by S.J.A. Turney – Review


Title – Praetorian: The Great Game
Author – S.J.A. Turney
Genre –  Historical Ficton
Length –  468 Pages (Kindle)
Publication – 12th March 2015
My Rating – 5/5 Stars


Promoted to the elite Praetorian Guard in the thick of battle, a young legionary is thrust into a seedy world of imperial politics and corruption. Tasked with uncovering a plot against the newly-crowned emperor Commodus, his mission takes him from the cold Danubian border all the way to the heart of Rome, the villa of the emperor’s scheming sister, and the great Colosseum.

What seems a straightforward, if terrifying, assignment soon descends into Machiavellian treachery and peril as everything in which young Rufinus trusts and believes is called into question and he faces warring commanders, Sarmatian cannibals, vicious dogs, mercenary killers and even a clandestine Imperial agent. In a race against time to save the Emperor, Rufinus will be introduced, willing or not, to the great game.


I was kindly gifted a copy of this book by the author and i can honestly say I was not disappointed. I’ve read a few books now in the same genre and many start slowly building up as they go along… not this one. Thrust straight into the action with our hero saving the life of a Praetorian prefect.

This starts the whole journey for Rufinus as he is promoted to the Praetorian guard after meeting the emperor. This sudden promotion gains him some new friends but also enemies!

We see Rufinus deal with these enemies the only way he knows how.. his fists! We then see a feud escalate. Not to give away anything I particularly liked the way Rufinus dealt with this situation.

Now Rufinus is chosen to save the emperor from a suspected plot against him. During this we see him struggle with being deceitful whilst also trying to gain favor in order to get closer to those who are suspected to be plotting against the emperor.

There are so many twists and turns along the way that the book kept me gripped and I honestly had no idea if Rufinus would succeed in his task or not.

The ending to the book did not disappoint either; I have no trouble recommending this book to anyone. It was a fantastic read.

The chapters flowed well, the characters relationships grew before your eyes. You could see alliances and friendships forming.  The author clearly put a lot of time and effort into this book and it shows

One thing I really loved about this book is that I took an instant dislike to one of the Praetorian prefects, the other I really liked. I found as I went along and Rufinus made discoveries along the way my opinion of the prefects changed. It was amazing to see how easily Simon managed to change my viewpoint as a reader so quickly.

Simon clearly knows his stuff, the book was brilliantly written from my stand point. I couldn’t pick anything I didn’t like or even anything I would have elaborated further on. It was simply a brilliant book and one of the best I’ve had the pleasure of reading.

If you do one thing today make sure it’s to click the picture above and view the book on Goodreads, read the other reviews, check Amazon.. then buy the book. It’s well worth the money

Last comment is directly for Simon.. My next pet will definitely be named Acheron!