His biography of Augustus, just released by Yale University Press, is the most balanced and nuanced explanation of how Augustus succeeded in gaining power over potentially more powerful competitors against a background of an increasingly corrupt and ineffective Senate. Although punctilious about what we do and do not know, the book reads like a novel in part, perhaps, because, having written several novels, Goldsworthy has learned to think about motivation. He is clearly the best Roman historian of our day.
This book, like his previous books on Caesar, Anthony & Cleopatra, and How Rome Fell and others are treasures to read and enjoy and, despite his cautions about drawing parallels with our current political situation, do make one wonder.
Review by Martin Lobel
Augustus: From Revolutionary to Emperor - hardcover at Amazon UK
Augustus: From Revolutionary to Emperor - Kindle at Amazon UK
Yale hardcover at Amazon US - Augustus: First Emperor of Rome
Adrian Goldsworthy's Augustus - Kindle at Amazon US