Work Title: Getorix: The Eagle and The Bull, A Celtic Adventure in Ancient Rome
Work Author(s): Judith Geary; Caroline S. Garrett, illustrator
114 b/w illustrations, 280 pages, Hardcover $24.95
Reviewer: KaaVonia Hinton
This adventure story begins on the first day of December, 101 B.C.E., as fourteen-year-old Getorix and his father, Claodicos, await execution. "Such a broad and heavy blade will take our heads cleanly at the first stroke," Claodicos promises in the novel's opening line. Claodicos, a Celtic leader, is executed after Romans defeat him. Eager to die bravely and honorably like his father, Getorix is furious when he is told his life has been spared. How will he ever show his father that he has the heart of a Cimmeri unafraid of death? Why didn't the gods allow him to die instead of sentencing him to a life of slavery?
Keltus, a Celtic slave serving Roman officials, is charged with the task of preparing Getorix to serve a thirteen-year-old Roman named Lucius. Getorix decides he will never submit to such a destiny. Several times Getorix confronts Keltus and Lucius, tempting them to battle him so that he might die a noble death. But Getorix is unprepared when he begins to realize that a friendship with Lucius isn't impossible and they might actually have something to teach each other. After all, they both enjoy stories, especially The Songs of the Adventures of Odysseus, and they both long to live up to their powerful fathers' expectations.
The author is a teacher at Appalachian State University and senior editor for High Country Publishers. Though this is her first novel, her articles about ancient Roman history and culture, partially based on her travels to Rome, appear in...