DESTROY CARTHAGE: what it meant to look Roman

My novel Total War Rome: Destroy Carthage begins in 168 BC at the Battle of Pydna, the decisive engagement in which the Roman general Aemilius Paullus defeated a Macedonian army and secured Roman power in northern Greece. The action then moves to Rome for the triumphal procession, a massive haul of works of art and other booty being watched by Aemilius Paullus, his son Scipio Aemilianus and the old senator Marcus Porcius Cato, whose cry ‘Carthage must be destroyed’ resonates through the novel just as it did in real history ...


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DESTROY CARTHAGE: interview with David Gibbins

Interview with David Gibbins on The Book Plank:

Question one: tell us about yourself and your hobbies: 

I’m an archaeologist by training, and a novelist by profession. After a first career as a university lecturer I became a full-time writer ten years ago, and have since published eight novels that have sold three million copies in thirty languages. My biggest passion is diving and underwater exploration, but I’ve also worked on archaeological sites on land and travelled extensively. My hobbies – when I can find the time! – include antiquarian books and maps, genealogy, and restoring and shooting antique firearms; in Britain I love mountaineering, and in Canada, where I was born, wilderness canoeing, everything about the winter and managing the forest on our family farm where I do most of my writing ...


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DESTROY CARTHAGE: the stuff that dreams are made on

One of the great excitements for me of writing Total War Rome: Destroy Carthage was the chance to create a story set against an event that was not only pivotal in ancient history, but also a highlight of my own career. Like many archaeologists I’ve often had difficulty correlating what I’ve been excavating with the great events of recorded history—with wars and political upheavals. Often it seems as if those events simply bypass the majority of people, leaving unaffected what the historian Fernand Braudel called the “underlying continuity” of day-to-day life. But sometimes the events are so huge, so all-encompassing, that they reach through the entire fabric of life, leaving their mark everywhere. When you’re confronted with that evidence emerging from the ground, when the scale and reality of those events becomes apparent, the effect can be shocking ...


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DESTROY CARTHAGE: free maps preview

I'm delighted to be able to show two maps that appear in Total War Rome: Destroy Carthage, produced by my publisher Macmillan. The first one is a superb topographical map of the Mediterranean region showing the main settings of the novel - Rome, Macedonia, Spain and North Africa. The second is a plan of ancient Carthage showing the direction of the final Roman assault in 146 BC, from the harbours and the sea wall towards the 'Byrsa' and its temple. One the way you can see places that figure in the novel - the Tanit sanctuary, where the Romans witness horrific scenes of child sacrifice ...


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DESTROY CARTHAGE: the coin of Antestius

In my novel Total War Rome: Destroy Carthage, the Roman general Scipio Africanus stands with his companion Fabius before the walls of Carthage, waiting for the catapults to let fly and for the assault that will change the course of history. The two men cast their minds back to the siege of Intercatia in Spain years before when Scipio had been the first on the walls, winning the coveted corona muralis, and they wonder which of them will be first this time. Here’s an extract from the novel to show what happens next ...


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DESTROY CARTHAGE: free chapter preview

Exciting news - my publishers have just released a free online preview of my novel Total War Rome: Destroy Carthage in advance of hardback publication of the book in the UK and the US on 3 September, the same day that Sega release Total War: ROME II. Click on the image to read the chapter-length Prologue, set during the Battle of Pydna in 168 BC when Rome finally defeated Macedonia and opened the way for conquest of Greece and the East ..


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