The Pericles Commission

What they said about The Pericles Commission

"Those who like their historicals with a touch of humor will welcome Australian author Corby's promising debut, set in fifth-century B.C.E. Greece. Corby displays a real gift for pacing and plotting."
—Publishers Weekly, starred review

“A dead man fell from the sky, landing at my feet with a thud.” With this opening line, Corby promises an entertaining read, a promise that he more than adequately fulfills.
One does not need knowledge of classical history to enjoy this mystery, because details of culture, politics and history are so deftly woven into the threads of the story that life in ancient Athens comes vividly alive. As for myself, I love this period of history and look forward to the reading more about Nicolaos and the Athenian Golden Age.
—Historical Novel Review

"...Moves along at a good clip, even borrowing some tropes from the noir subgenre...Corby draws the murder and many of his characters from historical documents, lending that much more believability to the story."
—Library Journal

“The Pericles Commission is a rollicking romp through ancient Athens, with captivating characters and engrossing, suspense-filled turns as twisty as the Attic streets. Debut author Gary Corby has not only made Greek history accessible—he’s made it first-rate entertainment.”
—Kelli Stanley, award-winning author of Nox Dormienda and City of Dragons

“Gary Corby’s ambitious series debut delivers an unexpected dividend—a lively sense of humor which leavens the weighty subject matter: the messy birth of democracy in Athens, attended by riot, revenge, and, of course, murder.”
—Steven Saylor, international bestselling author of Roma

“The Pericles Commission is a most original and enjoyable interpretation of classical Athens. Corby vividly and lucidly describes the intricacies of the city . . . in this exciting saga of flesh-and-blood characters who jostle and fight, love and hate as they approach the climax of murderous intrigue.”
—P. C. Doherty

"Periclean Athens has been a long-neglected venue for historical mysteries, but Gary Corby comes through in rare style with a murder mystery tied in with the customs and the complex politics of Athens as it was approaching the peak of its glory. A good read that not only entertains but leaves the reader knowing a lot more about Classical Athens."
—John Maddox Roberts

From the jacket flap

Early one bright, clear morning in Athens, 461 B.C., a dead man falls from the sky, landing at the feet of Nicolaos.

It doesn’t normally rain corpses. This one is the politician Ephialtes, who only days before had turned Athens into a democracy, and with it, kick-started western civilization. It looks very much as if Ephialtes was assassinated to stifle the world’s first democracy at its birth.

But Ephialtes has a lieutenant: a rising young politician by the name of Pericles. Pericles commissions the clever young Nicolaos to expose the assassin.

Nicolaos walks the mean streets of classical Athens in search of a killer. He’s totally confident he’ll succeed in finding him.

There are only a few small problems. Pericles is looking over his shoulder, critiquing his every move. Nicolaos would like to get closer (much closer) to Diotima, the intelligent and annoyingly virgin priestess of Artemis. He’d prefer not to go near Pythax, the brutally tough chief of the city guard. It would definitely help if the main suspect weren’t Xanthippus, a leading conservative and, worst of all, the father of Pericles.

But most of all, what Nicolaos really needs is to shake off his irritating twelve-year-old brother, Socrates, who keeps making helpful suggestions.

Can Nicolaos save Athens, democracy, and the future of western civilization?