The Light Bearer
This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.
The International Bestseller
A novel of Ancient Rome
Includes a note on the revised edition and an afterword by the author
“Throughout this monumental story, Gillespie constantly increases the excitement and intrigue. There are no flat passages in The Light Bearer, only a fast-flowing stream that erupts into a full-scale torrent in the book's conclusion.”
—Washington Post Book World
In the harsh wastes of the barbarian north, a child is born on dirt and straw in the rude thatched hall of a Germanic tribal chieftain. She is Auriane, destined to follow the pathway of her tribe’s most revered seeress. But as ruthless Roman invaders plunder her people's lands, burn their crops and kidnap their young men for the imperial army, Auriane is chosen to lead her tribal people in their struggle against the empire.
When the Emperor Domitian crosses the Rhine with four legions, the north’s hope resides in a woman…
And as the only world she has known collapses around her, Auriane is captured and taken to Rome, and into a life of horror and glory no seeress could have foreseen.
In Rome, senator and Stoic humanist Marcus Arrius Julianus rises to the loftiest pinnacles of government. Through wit, daring and brilliant maneuvering, he struggles to check the murderous whims of the increasingly corrupt Emperor Domitian. As a reign of terror begins, Julianus orchestrates a vast plot to assassinate the emperor.
Cultured Marcus Julianus and barbarian Auriane meet — and form a powerful bond across the gulf of their vastly different ways of life.
Domitian condemns Auriane to the arena, where in the halls of a gladiatorial training school she discovers the tribesman who betrayed her people in war. As Julianus’ assassination plot rushes to its cataclysmic conclusion, Auriane must carry out the solemn rite of vengeance before a maddened throng in the Colosseum.
An immediate international bestseller, The Light Bearer is the product of twelve years of research into the history, culture and mythology of classical Rome and the proto-Germanic tribes.
Donna Gillespie’s second novel, Lady of the Light (Berkley Trade, November, 2006), is also available through Amazon Kindle.
“For anyone interested in this tumultuous period of Roman despotism and Germanic tribes, Gillespie's epic is an intriguing recording of everyday detail, national issues and, more impressively, overarching influences of religion and psychology.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Gillespie's grasp of the daily social, religious and political lives of Germanic tribes and urban Romans alike, and her understanding of the way human deeds are woven by time into myth, keep The Light Bearer rooted in historical plausibility … keeps the reader engaged … The Light Bearer taps into one of the most popular themes in historical fiction today, the unsung woman who takes a hand in the shaping of history.”
—The San Francisco Chronicle
“Gillespie immersed herself in the lore and legends of the Roman way of life and emerged with The Light Bearer … sure to entertain readers in a manner they will not soon forget.”
From Publishers Weekly
© Publishers Weekly