Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series: Two More Thrillers:

Pliny: A Novel and Dark Horse are two more historical thrillers published by Cheops Books LLC. Pliny: A Novel by Dora Benley and Dark Horse by the Cargills concern two very different time periods but are both part of the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series.

Pliny: A Novel explores who was Pliny the Elder?

Pliny the Elder, or Gaius Plinius Secundus, was an ancient Roman scientist, essayist, and thinker, probably the greatest mind of the first century AD. He had an office right next door to what later became the Porta Nigra in Trier.

What was he doing there, hundreds of miles away from his home in Rome? Trier was the oldest Roman city in Germany. He had been appointed Governor of the Province of Germany probably by the Emperor Vespasian and his son, the Emperor Titus. No doubt he studied the birds there as well as the flora and fauna since he was the first to write an encyclopedia called the Natural History, which was influential for centuries.

He was carrying on business as usual here early in the summer of 79AD before packing his bags and returning home for a summer at the seaside south of Rome at one of his villas near the Vesuvius Volcano which unknown to any mortal that summer was about to erupt.

According to legend that is how Pliny died. He was leading an expedition to save those too near the volcano when the volcano sent a rain of ash down upon him. Italian archaeologist now think they may have discovered his remains in a ship in the Bay of Naples near the volcano. See article on the website.

But the novel offers a different explanation for his mysterious disappearance. He was being pursued by German warriors for writing a derisive work about their peoples and culture called the Germania.
But did he escape or not? Pliny: A Novel may present surprising answers. It is the latest book in the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series.

In Dark Horse what would happen if Hitler won the Battle of Dunkirk? Colonel Sir Edward Ware is about to find out when Rommel pushes him off the French beach with all his troops and then beats him to Britain in 1940. The chase ends up in Coronado, California, land of palm trees, the rich and famous — and swastikas!

It’s all ahead of the Republican Convention of 1940 in Philadelphia where a dark horse candidate is being selected with major international complications and plenty of Nazi involvement in this alternative history thriller.

Dark Horse is book five of the Edward Ware Thrillers At War Series.

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Two More Thrillers To Come From Cheops Books LLC:

Cheops Books LLC will soon publish two more historical thrillers by Dora Benley, Inn at the Crossroads and Pliny: A Novel.

Lizette receives an urgent missive from her mother and sister. They need rescued. The British under the Duke of Wellington are invading Waterloo in preparation for the Battle.

When Lizette gets to Waterloo, she finds that her mother and sister have fled to Brussels. The crazy Duchess of Richmond has decided to have a grand ball on the eve of the battle, the soldiers be damned. Her mother and sister, seamstresses, are sewing ballgowns for the event.

Gaston, Lizette’s husband’s only son at the Inn at the Crossroads, shows up and threatens his stepmother. He will drag her home if she does not get information for the cause of the Emperor Napoleon. She is to dance with the British officers, including Edward Ware’s great-grandfather, and report to him. But little does Gaston realize the complications that he has created.

Lizette is arrested and thrown in jail as a spy. Will Gaston be able to rescue her? Will he be able to help Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo? Read Inn at the Crossroads, a romantic historical thriller.

Who was Pliny the Elder?

Pliny the Elder, or Gaius Plinius Secundus, was an ancient Roman scientist, essayist, and thinker, probably the greatest mind of the first century AD. He had an office right next door to what later became the Porta Nigra in Trier.

What was he doing there, hundreds of miles away from his home in Rome? Trier was the oldest Roman city in Germany. He had been appointed Governor of the Province of Germany probably by the Emperor Vespasian and his son, the Emperor Titus. No doubt he studied the birds there as well as the flora and fauna since he was the first to write an encyclopedia called the Natural History, which was influential for centuries.

He was carrying on business as usual here early in the summer of 79 AD before packing his bags and returning home for a summer at the seaside south of Rome at one of his villas near the Vesuvius Volcano which unknown to any mortal that summer was about to erupt.

According to legend that is how Pliny died. He was leading an expedition to save those too near the volcano when the volcano sent a rain of ash down upon him. Italian archaeologist now think they may have discovered his remains in a ship in the Bay of Naples near the volcano. See article on the website.

But the novel offers a different explanation for his mysterious disappearance. He was being pursued by German warriors for writing a derisive work about their peoples and culture called the Germania.

But did he escape or not? Pliny: A Novel may present surprising answers. It is the latest book in the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series.

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Cato Looms Like A Giant Over The Novel:

Cato the Elder was Roman who almost singlehandledly commanded the Third Punic War. He brought it about with his perpetual speeches “Carthage must be destroyed” in the Roman Senate House and showing off crops and goods that supposedly came from that city along the coast of North Africa to warn the Romans how close by it was located.

He owned a vast latifundia in the countryside outside Rome. He experimented with various crops such as grapes, olives, and livestock and wrote a Latin prose work On Farming, influencing Latin literature. He also wrote Latin prose works that have not survived such as the first history of Rome that we know about called Origines. He also composed an encyclopedia and a book of maxims, neither of which survive except in fragments. He might have been a Pliny the Elder two centuries earlier in Roman history.

He is certainly the one historical character whose personality looms largest over the Dora Benley historical thriller Carthage Must Be Destroyed. It will soon be published by Cheops Books LLC.

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Did Edward Ware’s Ancestor Fight In The Punic Wars?

Colonel Sir Edward Ware is known to have quite a pedigree, at least as long as the Queen’s. He can trace his ancestry back to ancient Rome. His ancestor, Lucius Antonius, fought with Julius Caesar in the Alexandrian War. He was the grandfather of Caelius Antonius, mapmaker for the Roman legions who were massacred by ancient Germans at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest.

And Caelius Antonius was the grandfather of Caius Antonius, an assistant of the famous Latin encyclopedia writer, Pliny the Elder, who helped the famous essayist escape an attack of the Germans at the time of Vesuvius and Pompeii.

But before that farther back in the history of Rome did Colonel Sir Edward Ware have a Roman progenitor who fought against Hannibal in the Punic Wars? Believe it or not it may be so. Recently archaeological evidence indicates it. An early collection of documents yet to be completely translated has been found in a key location.

A Gaius Antonius —- same clan name as Edward —- was appointed by the Roman who later became the great victor, Scipio Africanus, to make drawings of what he saw in Carthage in the way of siege machines and weapons when visiting on the pretext of being an ambassador of sorts to Carthage. And where were these documents found? At the Punic Wall in the modern day Spanish city of Cartegena in southern Spain just across the straits from Africa and Carthage and not far from modern day Gibraltar.

The Punic Wall was what used to protect the ancient Carthagenian city in Spain. What story does this wall have to tell? These letters may tell us. Cheops Books LLC has just acquired the rights to translate them and reveal to the world their long hidden tale.

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The German Question In Literature:

You may have hit upon a very central conflict in European history. Germany was not largely occupied by the Romans and from the time of the Romans you have the “German question”. The Romans wrote about it themselves. There is a lost work by Pliny the Elder, the author of the Natural History, probably called the Germania, and I make much of this in one of my novels. His nephew, Pliny the Younger, wrote about the subject, too. And Pliny the Younger’s friend, Tacitus, wrote the only surviving work on the subject entitled the Germania for sure. Tacitus’s work was the subject of the fascinating audio book I listened to on the subject at the beginning of last year.

Tacitus’s Germania has been a subject of discussion for the past two thousand years. It is the earliest work we have on the habits and customs of the early pagan Germans which emphasizes their warlike qualities and the “German question”. The Romans themselves were scared of them. No wonder! During the ugly Battle of the Teutoburg Forest Roman legionaries were captured in wooden cages and burned alive in the forest, sacrificed to pagan gods.

Richard Wagner during the 19th century made much of this ancient and medieval heritage in his operas. Heinrich Himmler was later to try to seize upon this material as the “origin” of what he called the Nazi identity.

I have looked up various works on Roman Britain on Amazon and curiously enough the British archaeologists have all noted that the British attitude about Rome differs from the attitude of France and Germany, and this influences their attitude about the “German question”. In France they celebrate Vercingetorix from Caesar’s Gallic Wars. He is supposed to be a national hero in France. In Germany they celebrate Herman the German, or Arminius. In Britain they celebrate the Romans. As many have noted, Britain seems to take on the identity of Rome itself. It all comes from the days of the British Empire and Imperial Britain. Nobody else on the Continent has anything like this and so recently, too! They look dubiously upon rebels against Rome such as Vercingetorix and Arminius.

It has also been said that the British have a better attitude about preserving ruins than they do in Italy. So the Roman ruins in Britain are better preserved than their Italian counterparts. You can get a better feel for the Roman world there including all those villas and mosaic floors that are much talked about.

Cheops Books LLC has two upcoming works about the “German question”. The concern Roman Britain and the ancient Germans battling the Romans: Pliny: A Novel and Caesar’s Legions, both works in the Edward Ware Thrillers at War Series.

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Did Pliny’s House Look Like The Getty?

Pliny the Elder obviously lived in what we would call a Governor’s House in Roman Trier. What did such a place look like? None of the original Roman villas survives to this day intact, not in Trier, not in Italy, and not in Great Britain. In such places you don’t usually have more than a few standing columns or perhaps a floor full of mosaics to give you a clue of its former grandeur.

Probably the best example of such a villa nowadays exists in a place that Romans never visited and Romans never dreamed about. Such a villa has been painstakingly reconstructed on the California coast, land of dreams and elaborate reconstructions such as Disneyland and Hollywood.

It is no mere fantasy. In fact, it is an elaborate reconstruction of the villa of Calpurnius Piso, the father-in-law of Julius Caesar and father of Caesar’s last wife, Calpurnia, the one with the dreams and nightmares in Shakespeare’s play. It would be very similar to anything that Pliny would have owned. Both men were intellectuals of their day. Calpurnius Piso was a Stoic philosopher. Pliny the Elder was the author of the Natural History, the first of all encyclopedias in the western tradition.

This California villa was reconstructed by John Paul Getty, the billionaire who had a hobby of collecting Greek and Roman antiquities on a large scale. He wanted to build a place to house them. The Getty Villa opened in 1974. The Los Angeles Times interviewed John Paul Getty. Getty said: “It is fortunate that the United States has one ancient private building which is authentic in spirit. One could say go to Pompeii and Herculaneum and see Roman villas the way they are now — then go to Malibu and see the way they were in ancient times.”

Pliny also owned a villa on the seacoast along the Bay of Naples, so this comparision seems appropriate. It is inspirational to think that Pliny strolled through his peristylium and viewed the classical sculptures you find at the Getty.

Pliny the Elder is a character in two upcoming volumes of the Edward Ware Thriller Series: Old Faithful Plot and Pliny: A Novel.

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Pliny: A Novel Has A New Cover:

In Pliny: A Novel the grandson of the hero of Augustus: A Novel, Caius Antonius — who is also an ancestor of the hero of the Edward Ware Thriller Series, Colonel Sir Edward Ware — is working for Pliny the Elder in 79AD. Pliny is the Roman governor of Germany and is residing in Trier on the Moselle River. Suddenly a German warrior attacks the governor’s residence and throws a warning into his reflecting pond. It is payback time for the Romans. The Germans want revenge.

The Germans kicked the Romans out of their province in 9AD in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest. But Germanicus returned five years later to make the Germans pay. What will happen next? That is up to Caius to discover, or the German warriors may push Pliny and the Romans out of Germany all together. This time they may even follow them all the way back to Italy in Pliny: A Novel, part 2 of Augustus: A Novel, coming soon from Cheops Books, LLC. It is the latest book in the Edward Ware Thriller Series.

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Has Pliny The Elder Been Re-Discovered?

In the early 1980s the excavation of Herculaneum, sister city to Pompeii, was excavated. A large group of skeletons was found in a boat shed facing the sea as if they were attempting to escape but ran out of time.

Just how they may have been planning to escape is knowledge provided to us by the writings of an ancient Rome author named Pliny the Younger who wrote our only surviving eyewitness account of the Vesuvius eruption. He claimed that his more famous uncle, Pliny the Elder, was going to rescue these unfortunate escapees. How so? Pliny the Elder was the admiral of a Roman fleet stationed at Misenum, north of Naples, on August 24, 79AD, the day Vesuvius erupted. His nephew says he was curious to observe the volcano erupting from close up. He had wide ranging scientific interests and was the author of Pliny’s Natural History, the first encyclopedia in western history. Supposedly he had gotten word from friends that they needed to be resuced and he took off with his fleet to rescue them, leaving his teenage nephew behind to write for the ages.

Now Italian scientists are trying to date and identify the remains of a man found in such a rescue boat and hope they have discovered Pliny the Elder himself. It sounds far fetched but interesting nevertheless. It would be nice to have a reconstructed drawing of Pliny based on his skeleton since no sculpture portraits survive from antiquity.

Pliny the Elder and his family are the subjects of two historical thrillers which Cheops Books LLC is about to publish. The Roman statesman and scientist appears in Old Faithful Plot and Vesuvius Plot. In Old Faithful Plot Pliny is the subject of a time tunnel manhunt on the part of Adolf Hitler. The dictator thinks that the ancient Roman threatens the German people. In Vesuvius Plot as the governor of Germany Pliny must fight off the hordes of German tribes.

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Promotions for The Old Faithful Plot:

One thing to consider about The Old Faithful Plot: I think that if the news media wasn’t so obsessed with the North Korean leader he would do a lot less harm. No wonder he does and says such wild things. That is the way to attract attention. But I am tempted to take advantage of the situation as a way to promote one of my books. I have a thriller based on a totally fictional premise that Hitler is threatening Edward and Dora that if they do not hand over the Lawrence maps, key to world domination, he will blow up Yellowstone National Park. He has sent the von Wessels to detonate Old Faithful geyser and blow it sky high hoping to awaken the super volcano that can dump ash across America. I was thinking of relating the two and having a Facebook Party about this end of the world stuff.

I have actually already written and edited the novel The Old Faithful Plot last year and this year. I am about ready to publish it. The Old Faithful Plot named after the Old Faithful Geyser in Yellowstone National Park of course. The geyser becomes a kind of volcano. A time tunnel is discovered behind it a la Journey to the Center of the Earth style. Helga and Herr von Wessel go back to ancient Rome to assassinate the writer who first badmouthed the Germans, Pliny the Elder. Hitler wants to correct the reputation of Germans throughout history and get unified sooner so that the Germans can win, not lose, WW1. He wants to change history itself. But you see the time tunnel sequence is in a nightmare that Dora has. It is a nightmare sequence and so not real. The main text is about the plot to blow up the park and ignite the supervolcano that will bury America in ash.

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Pliny The Elder’s Trier: As Seen By The Germans

These photos suggest the Trier of Pliny the Elder in 79 AD. None of these buildings or monuments actually come from that era, though. Trier was founded in 16BC and was initially called the City of Augusta Treverorum, or the “City of Augustus in the Land of the Treveri”. By the time of Pliny’s tenure as the Roman governor there the town was about 95 years old — almost one century. The monuments at that point were about to be replaced with later ones that have survived to the present day. Some of these statues and gardens were even built as late as the Renaissance but in a classical style. In other words, we can only imagine what Pliny the Elder’s Governor’s Palace and Palace Gardens in ancient Trier must have looked like. When the authors of the book, Vesuvius Plot, visited Trier, they were looking for inspiration to recreate the life and times of Pliny. These statues, gardens, baths, bridges, and city walls and gates come as close as anything we are likely to find in the future.

During the scenes in the historical thriller when the German tribes attack Pliny in the Governor’s Palace in Trier, imagine them attacking in this classical setting with the reflecting pond surrounded by classical statues and gardens cut in precise geometric form. Pliny overcomes the tribes and tricks them with this supreme sense of order which is the hallmark of the author of the world’s first encyclopedia, Pliny’s Natural History. He fights battles with the same order with which he lives and works. He overcomes the barbarians who tried to push the Romans out of Germany only several decades before in the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, which forms the subject of another Edward Ware Thrillers at War novel, the Cherusci Plot. His right hand man in the grandson of the Roman who drew the maps for the Emperor Augustus in the time of the Teutoburg Forest, Caius Antonius.

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