book cover of Shadows of Athens
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Shadows of Athens

(2019)
(The first book in the Philocles series)
A novel by

 
 

There's a new detective in the agora

443 BC, and, after decades of war with Persia, peace has finally come to Athens. The city is being rebuilt, and commerce and culture are flourishing.

Aspiring playwright Philocles has come home to find a man with his throat cut slumped against his front gate. Is it just a robbery gone wrong? But, if so, why didn't the thieves take the dead man's valuables? With the play that could make his name just days away, he must find out who this man is, why he has been murdered - and why the corpse was left in his doorway.

But Philocles soon realises he has been caught up in something far bigger, and there are those who don't want him looking any further . . .

Praise for Shadows of Athens

"I loved it; great sense of place, terrific characters and a cracking plot" Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat

"As vivid and lively as a Greek wedding - but with rather more blood!" Val McDermid, author of the Kate Brannigan Mysteries

"It's about time someone did for ancient Athens what Lindsey Davis' Falco novels do for Ancient Rome. Alvey sets the scene perfectly, with easy brushstrokes and lightly worn learning. In Philocles we have an aspiring playwright, man of the people and reluctant detective. I look forward to his next case..." Jack Grimwood, author of Moskva

"There is a new star in the classical firmament. Philocles is engaging, inspiring and feels absolutely real. This is historical writing at its best and crime writing worthy of prizes. Riveting" Manda Scott, author of the Boudica series

"Superb... A fabulous read"Irish Times

Genre: Historical Mystery

Praise for this book

"It's about time someone did for ancient Athens what Lindsey Davis' Falco novels do for Ancient Rome. Alvey sets the scene perfectly, with easy brushstrokes and lightly worn learning. In Philocles we have an aspiring playwright, man of the people and reluctant detective. I look forward to his next case..." - Jack Grimwood

"I loved it; great sense of place, terrific characters and a cracking plot." - Joanne Harris

"The historical detail is excellent, and the story and characters expertly spun out - a very entertaining and satisfying read." - Glyn Iliffe

"Historical sleuthing finally gets its grown-up trousers. The book's got wit and knowledge and the winning knack of immersing the reader in ancient Greece and the whole theatrical scene there. It shows a thorough understanding of time and place, and has a dark heart of thuggery and murder. Finally, someone has taken on Saylor and Davis and brought us out of Rome at last!" - Robert Low

"As vivid and lively as a Greek wedding - but with rather more blood!" - Val McDermid

"There is a new star in the classical firmament. Philocles is engaging, inspiring and feels absolutely real. This is historical writing at its best and crime writing worthy of prizes. Riveting." - Manda Scott

"Intriguing . . . a refreshingly different setting portrayed with a convincing air of authenticity. I hope it's the first of many." - Andrew Taylor

"Alvey has combined the best features of a crime novel and a work of historical fiction. The result is a pacy, exciting and intelligent story set in a rich world overlooked by most modern novelists. The plot is clever and solidly rooted in history, the characters vivid, sympathetic and lifelike and the world of Athens is gloriously recreated. Best of all, for me, while Shadows of Athens is taut and historically detailed, it also displays a quirky sense of humour - [I] loved it." - Simon Turney

"If you like C J Sansom's Tudor sleuth Matthew Shardlake, you'll love this - a gripping murder mystery set in a fantastically fully-realised ancient Athens, which will keep you guessing to the very end." - James Wilde


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Used availability for JM Alvey's Shadows of Athens

Paperback Editions

March 2019 : UK Paperback
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Title: Shadows of Athens (Philocles 1)
Author(s): JM Alvey
ISBN: 1-4091-8063-8 / 978-1-4091-8063-0 (UK edition)
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

April 2019 : UK Audio CD

Title: Shadows Of Athens
Author(s): J M Alvey
ISBN: 1-4450-8187-3 / 978-1-4450-8187-8 (UK edition)
Publisher: ISIS Audio Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


April 2019 : UK Audio CD

Title: Shadows Of Athens
Author(s): J M Alvey
ISBN: 1-4450-8188-1 / 978-1-4450-8188-5 (UK edition)
Publisher: ISIS Audio Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


March 2019 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon   


March 2019 : Australia Audio edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon AU   


March 2019 : Canada Audio edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon CA   


March 2019 : UK Audio edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

September 2020 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: Shadows of Athens (Philocles Book 1)
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Canelo Adventure
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


March 2019 : USA, Canada Kindle edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA   


March 2019 : Australia, UK Kindle edition
thumb

Title: Shadows of Athens (Philocles 1)
Author(s): JM Alvey
Publisher: Orion
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon AU