Friday, 2009-11-20

Roma Eterna by Robert Silverberg

A “fixup” of a series of short stories into a novel, describing a Roman Empire that never fell (mostly because the Exodus never occurred, and a Roman citizen in exile engineered the assassination of Muhammed) but that persisted into our time.

An interesting conceit, but one that becomes less believable as the alternative time goes by and the divergence of history increases.

One thing that’s missing is the view of the common people. Are we to believe that the imperial system managed to stay intact (military defeat and occasional palace coups notwithstanding) through over two thousand years?

Anyway, it’s fiction, and well-written and enjoyable fiction at that. Recommended.