“I walked home. Rome, my city, which had been until then a never-failing solace, lay before me like a woman, secretive and beautiful, demanding and rewarding, eternally seductive. For the first time in my life, I refused to be seduced.”
“The Silver Pigs: A Marcus Didius Falco Mystery” by Lindsey Davis
Once I finally managed to dig the first of many Marcus Didius Falco mysteries out of the great pile of books in my “library,” I was really excited to embark on what seemed to be a really intriguing series. Detective Noir in Ancient Greece, sign me up! And while I enjoyed The Silver Pigs, there was definitely a little disappointment there as well.
When Falco all but collides with a beautiful run-away on the streets of Rome, he’s right when he assumes that only trouble can follow. There’s a murder, illegal silver “pigs,” and slavery in Britain to contend with, as well as a feisty women who you just know is going to be a love interest, especially with how much Falco denies the possibility when they first meet. At first, Davis’s writing is exciting and engaging. She writes in a very fast-paced style that channels the genre in a new way, but, after a while, the quirkiness gets a little old and burdensome for me. There were times where the writing seemed overly opaque, much like in the way Terry Pratchett can do when he’s talking about the Big Mysterious Things That Be, only Davis was writing about Big Political Intrigue. I appreciate a writer who doesn’t go in assuming her reader is stupid, but sometimes, when writers do this, it leaves me wishing they would be a little more clear and a little less caught up in thinking they’re clever.
Still, The Silver Pigs was enjoyable, and held me well during the end as it did in the beginning, with just the stuff around the middle (since I remember I liked the middle, too) being a little to jarring in the style for me. It’s the first book in the series and, since I notice notes of Pratchett in Davis’s writing (slight as they are), I have a feeling that, like Discworld, the Falco Mysteries get better and better with each book. I’m looking forward to digging into the next volume.
Books read: 23/100.
And, as you can see, I’m back from my little trip home, which was a lot of fun, though very busy! I’ve been ill all morning (ugh), and, instead of doing a return post, I just finished up this half-written review. Apologies if it’s not my best review; I blame a combination of travel fatigue and feeling like the entirety of the inside of my midsection is collapsing in on itself. Hopefully, it passes by tomorrow and I can get my eyes focused back on the prize!
I’d also like to give a quick thanks to Steve Voelker for following the blog! Welcome aboard, Steve! Glad to have you around.
Books read: 23/100.