I AM LIVIA opens in an arresting way, when 15-year-old Livia Drusilla overhears her father and his friends plotting to murder Julius Caesar. Most novels would be a disappointment after that opening. This one is not. It portrays the life and times of Livia Drusilla who eventually became the consort of the Emperor Augustus.
Like most people, I don’t know much about the Emperor Augustus, and what I do know is based upon the stone statues of him as an awe-inspiring divinity. Like most good novelists, Phyllis T. Smith brings him to life, humanizes him, and makes us see him as the brilliant and charismatic young man he was, before the difficulties of life and the corruption of power spoiled him.
Highly recommended! Five stars.