Tuesday, February 26, 2008

21. "Pompeii" - Robert Harris


As a kid, I had a creepy fascination with nature and death. I devoured books about the Hindenberg and received special permission from my fourth grade teacher to look at the book with the figures of frozen Pompeiians in their death throes.

My pyromanic phase has never ended; I just get to burn stuff at the Effin' Ranch now. And read books about to be made into movies if not for the (former) writers' strike.

Pompeii tells the story of Mount Vesuvius's eruption in 79 A.D. through the eyes of a Roman aquarius named Attilius (fictional character) and "Pliny" (real Roman historical figure). As horrific as I had always imagined this event, Harris reaches deeper and creates a tense background.

However, the fight between Attilius and a former slave-to-master is a poor attempt at diverting the reader's attention before the fireworks occur, as well as add a lackluster love affair.

Meh. It was readable. However, I am much more interested in Pliny's story now.

2.5 out of 5.0 Volcano Lava.

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