THE FLAME OF HERCULES by Richard Llewellyn


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Mr. Llewellyn's second book for Doubleday's Cavalcade series (See The Witch of Merthyn p. 440, 1954) is a well planned story set in Herculanaeum just prior to the eruption of Vesuvius. Its central theme- the adventures of Garvan, a young captive prince from Gaul- reflects the struggle of early Christianity. As Garvan, a galley slave, escapes from his ship, his route leads by devious ways into favor with a wealthy family of Herculanaeum. Their daughter, Genessa, is an apprentice Vestal in the temple of Diana and when she and Garven fall in love there are the attendant complications not only with the politically scheming Dianists who want to influence Caesar, but also with the small body of Christians. Genessa's friend, Lydia, is a Christian. Through her and through other incidents, such as Garvan's ordeal with lions in the arena, the young people become convinced of the new faith. Climactically, the eruption is followed by their escape and return to Gaul. Side and counter plots and a sense of the teeming Roman world make this vivid, informative reading.

Pub Date: July 14th, 1955
Publisher: Doubleday