My Wicked Gladiators

Lauren Hawkeye
My Wicked Gladiators
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Avon Red
Release Date
May 2012
Erotic Romance, Historical Romance, Ménage or more

Alba has spent her entire life pleasing others.

As an upper-class woman in Ancient Rome, that is her place in life. But when her husband, Lucius, the owner of a prestigious gladiatorial school, uses her body as a bargaining tool to increase his fortunes, she is faced with doing as he demands—or finding herself on the street.

Forced to lie with masked gladiators chosen by Lucius, Alba is surprised to discover pleasure in being powerless. Only in the forbidden arms of Caius and Marcus does she find comfort, however temporary it may be.

But with Lucius' demands looming and the threat of death for her gladiators ever present, will Alba's fleeting pleasures be enough? Or will she finally grab hold of her own desires, no matter the consequences?

Book Review by Ashia (reviewer)
May 14, 2012   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
161 people found the following review helpful
Historical romance is glutted with Regencies, and to a lesser extent, medieval era, Georgian and Victorian period romances. Thus, it was with glee that I saw MY WICKED GLADIATORS. I snapped it up! Having loved Kate Quinn's Mistress of Rome, set in Ancient Rome where gladiators fight to the death, I expected to be immersed and carried away into this fascinating and turbulent time in history once again. I wasn't disappointed!

Alba was the wife of Lucius, a man who owned a prestigious ludus -- a gladiator training school -- and of course, the gladiators themselves owed him their allegiance. However, they were short of funds, but fortunately, Lucius was able to find a patron. The problem is, this patron believes firmly in family, and Lucius and Alba's childless state wasn't very encouraging.

Fearing that they might not be able to seal the deal with this potential patron, Lucius forced Alba into intimate relations with one of their top gladiators, in the hope that his seed would prove potent and that a "champion" son would be planted in her. Yet, Alba's eye was caught by another gladiator, Marcus. Dare she hope that Marcus was the one who was ordered to impregnate her? And if not, what did it mean that she was becoming interested with this other gladiator?

Yet whatever Alba could have with her gladiators was only temporary, as they were all under Lucius, their pater familias--their head of the family--and to whom they owed their loyalty...

Alba certainly grew over the course of the story. From a woman firmly under her husband's thumb, she learned to fight for herself and the people she loved. To give them justice, freedom, even as she sought these things for herself. It was great seeing her grow into the woman she had potential to be, in a restrictive time such as Ancient Rome, where women virtually had no power.

Her two gladiator lovers filled the role of sexy heroes to a T, with their buffed bodies, masculine virility and brawn, yet could be gentle when it came to Alba. They were loyal to a fault, i.e. to Lucius, until a shift in a bid for freedom for the three of them made them transfer this loyalty to Alba. Though their backgrounds were revealed in a conversation with Alba, I would've loved to know them better. Because the story was told from Alba's point of view, we aren't able to get into these men's heads at all. I do think the story could've been improved if we had seen what each of the men were thinking--their thoughts and emotions and the changes that were wrought in them as a result of the shifting landscape.

I also thought that the resolution to their situation was too pat. In fact, everything that happened seemed to be pushing Alba toward her lovers and eventually, to freedom. Not that I didn't enjoy the story, but it did become predictable.

But these are minor complaints. The writing was superb, making the story flow, and the pacing was just right. It was fantastic to read a story set in a time that is hardly read about, though the story mainly focused on Alba and her personal problems. Alba and her sexy gladiators burned up the sheets (or pool or whatever), but it was Alba's treatment of her servant girl Druscilla that touched me. It revealed Alba's compassionate side, and it also served as the catalyst to make her fight.

MY WICKED GLADIATORS is a fascinating story in a unique, fresh setting that should delight romance and ménage lovers everywhere.
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