Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Anyone remember the name of this book?

I have been wracking my brains trying to recall the title of a book where a modern woman who complained night and day about everything in her life was sent back to Roman times (not to Rome though) by some ancient gods. She may have had their statues around as decorations?

In the process, she learns many lessons about just what life was like back then, beginning with why you didn't drink the water but went for the wine. In those long ago times she experiences the boredom of a life without constant entertainment, the terrors of being overrun by enemies, as well as the dubious joys of being saved by the soldiers on your own side. In a rather more unlikely fashion she also has brief dealings with the head of the army in order to negotiate a settlement for damages (perhaps she was a lawyer in modern times?).

Anyway, it was a very good look at what life may have been like back then if seen through modern eyes. My search engine forays haven't turned up anything so I'm tossing the question out there to y'all.


  1. Your description sounds a bit like "Household Gods", Judith Tarr and Harry Turtledove.
    I read it years ago and don't remember it that well.

    ? :)

  2. Sounds like a "Dr. Who" episode I recently watched!

  3. I think "Household Gods" might be right. I vaguely remember starting a book something like that, and being so disgusted with the main character that I dumped it after a very short time. The authors ring a (very small) bell, and I was in a Harry Turtledove phase some years back and would probably have bought it on the strength of his name.

  4. Everybody tells me it's a good book, and it did have a lot of goodies in it about Roman culture. I'm sure it's worth reading.

    But I was both depressed by the grittiness and annoyed by the main character, and I just couldn't get very far. Of course, I was in a fairly downer mood myself, so I probably missed a lot of the inherent humor (albeit dark) of the situation.

  5. If it's not Household Gods, you can try sending your description to Loganberry Books. They have a service where for $2 they'll post your "stumper" and their readers will try to guess it. They seem to have a fairly high success rate and managed to track down an MG series for me "about a girl sent to live with her aunt and uncle on a ranch after a riding accident kills her horse." :lol :

  6. Household Gods. I read it. It's...OK. One of those books I read, and then when I cleared off my shelves, tossed along to the giveaway heap.