A change is as good as a rest, they say, and I’m going to hold out for this! After 20 Falco books there was a danger of becoming stale, or at least very blasé. Writing my new series about his daughter has many advantages: the woman’s and (since she comes from Britain) the outsider’s point of view of Roman traditions and society. Readers’ desperate pleas for more of Falco and Helena can be answered, if they will just trust me and allow this, by seeing the family through the daughter’s eyes. I myself love writing about Falco as the eccentric Dad whose children both love and deplore him (this worked also in The Spook Who Spoke Again, my digital novella told by the 12-year-old boy, Postumus). And we move forward 12 years from the benign era of Vespasian to the much darker background of paranoid, murderous Domitian.

I am hoping to explore different themes, too. I have now looked at domestic slavery, elections and auctions, and will be concentrating on the world of family businesses – a much neglected aspect of Roman society and one where women had a strong role and influence.

Deadly Election is published by Hodder

© Lindsey Davis 2015

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