Rating: 4 Stars
Normally I'm bored to tears when it comes to books about the Roman military, though I definitely enjoy the daily life aspects. Still, this was an informative read about a incredibly important battle that few people actually know about. There were a few overlapping sections that became repetitive, but overall it was an easy read. Though there's not a whole lot of information about this battle, Wells' does a decent job with what he has to work with. He provides background information in the years leading up to this complete decimation of three well-trained, highly-skilled Roman legions - who never stood a chance, trying to fend off a surprise attack in an unfamiliar environment against a diverse population they didn't understand.
Even a few days later, I am still thinking about this book. It was well-written and a surprisingly fast read, despite the subject matter. Perhaps it is just me, but I find a lot of work about Ancient Rome to be tedious when it comes specifically to military. I am not interested in this genre, whether it is modern or ancient. This book is important though, as it covers multiple aspects of this specific battle and how this came to be the borders of ancient Roman power. I find the Germanic peoples fascinating in their own right and only wish they'd have written their own histories, as it would be much better to see the victories and defeats through their own eyes, instead of only having Rome's perspective. They were neither accurate nor kind the majority of the time.