Tuesday, April 29, 2014

TLC Book Tours Review and Giveaway: I Am Livia by Phyllis T. Smith

Title: I Am Livia
Author: Phyllis T. Smith
Format: ARC
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Publish Date: May 1, 2014
Source: TLC Book Tours

What's the Story?:

From Goodreads.com: "At the tender age of fourteen, Livia Drusilla overhears her father and fellow aristocrats plotting the assassination of Julius Caesar. Proving herself an astute confidante, she becomes her father’s chief political asset—and reluctantly enters into an advantageous marriage to a prominent military officer. Her mother tells her, “It is possible for a woman to influence public affairs,” reminding Livia that—while she possesses a keen sense for the machinations of the Roman senate—she must also remain patient and practical.

But patience and practicality disappear from Livia’s mind when she meets Caesar’s heir, Octavianus. At only eighteen, he displays both power and modesty. A young wife by that point, Livia finds herself drawn to the golden-haired boy. In time, his fortunes will rise as Livia’s family faces terrible danger. But her sharp intellect—and her heart—will lead Livia to make an unbelievable choice: one that will give her greater sway over Rome than she could have ever foreseen."

My Two Cents:

"I am Livia" is a historical fiction tale of Ancient Rome that tells the story of Livia Drusilla, who moves in and out of the political circles of Rome. Told from Livia's own perspective, this book gives the reader a front row seat to an absolutely fascinating time. I really enjoyed seeing all of the political intrigue and romance of the time through Livia's eyes. My fellow historical fiction fans will really enjoy this tale with its fantastic detail.

I really liked Livia as a character. She was definitely one of the elements that really made the book for me. She is so smart and I loved that she was a book lover like I am. She realizes that the way that she moves in the political circles of the time is not something that is open to all women and she really takes advantage of her position. We get to see how she moves in and out of these circles and how she makes decisions that really change the way the politics of Rome move. This book definitely has a strong romantic element to it, which I loved reading about. Livia and Octavianus' relationship was really intriguing to me. I loved reading about them.

One thing that I really like about book blogging is that it has opened the doors to so many new doors for me. Before book blogging, I had read very few books set during the ancient time period. I am always happy to visit some place new. This book had some great armchair traveling in it. There is a lot of good detail there!

Overall, this is a great historical fiction story!


One lucky winner will win a copy of this book (U.S./CAN only)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the Rest of the Tour:

Monday, April 21st: Passages to the Past – author guest post
Wednesday, April 23rd: Dwell in Possibility
Friday, April 25th: Svetlana’s Reads and Views – author guest post
Monday, April 28th: Historical Tapestry – author guest post “Why I Love Rome…”
Monday, April 28th: Words for Worms
Tuesday, April 29th: A Bookish Affair
Wednesday, April 30th: Italian Brat’s Obsessions
Friday, May 1st: Literally Jen
Monday, May 5th: Ageless Pages Reviews – author guest post
Wednesday, May 7th: Broken Teepee
Thursday, May 8th: The Most Happy Reader
Monday, May 12th: Passages to the Past
Tuesday, May 13th: Unabridged Chick
Thursday, May 15th: The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader
Monday, May 19th: Ageless Pages Reviews
Wednesday, May 21st: The Most Happy Reader - author guest post
Thursday, May 22nd: Books Without Any Pictures
Tuesday, May 27th: Col Reads
Tuesday, June 3rd: Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Wednesday, June 4th: Luxury Reading


  1. Interesting that you mentioned that HF has been your path to reading and learning about past settings, such as ancient Rome. Only recently have I branched out from English or American settings.

  2. I love the sounds of this story, particularly told in Livia's voice. Thanks for the giveaway.

  3. I think there are not enough books set in this time period. Looking forward to reading this book. Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. I've usually been more interested in the ancient Greeks than the Romans. I think I'll expand my interests a little, they're all interesting

  5. This historical sounds intriguing and captivating. thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  6. Would love to read Livia's story. You made me crave for more.
    Historical fiction attracts me.
    Thank you for the info & giveaway!

  7. I loved watching I, Claudius on PBS and loved the many characters, including Livia. Thank you for the giveaway.

  8. I enjoy historical fiction set in Rome and this looks like an interesting story.

  9. I find the image on this book cover absolutely arresting -- from what you share with us in your review, it sounds like the character may be as captivating as the cover...Seriously, this is my kind of book, doubtlessly. Thank you for this opportunity!

  10. I have had my eye on this one for awhile and was just hoping that it would be a good one. glad to hear that you enjoyed it.

  11. I love book blogging for the same reason - there are so many new genres and books that I never would have picked up without recommendations from other bloggers!

    Thanks for being on the tour.

  12. I have come to look to historical fiction as a source for learning about all the important facets of history not covered in my formal schooling. As best as I can recall, no mention of Livia Drusilla was ever made in any of my classes. Thanks for featuring her story here ... I'd love to give it a read!


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