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Valerio Massimo Manfredi books in order

Valerio Massimo Manfredi is an Italian writer, essayist, journalist and archaeologist.

He has authored several best-selling novels that have seen a total of about eight million copies sold worldwide.

His novel The Last Legion was made into a movie released in 2007, whereas his Alexander Trilogy has been bought by Universal Pictures for yet another cinematic version of the exploits of Alexander the Great.

Valerio is a graduate of the University of Bologna and Catholic University of Milan where he studied Classical Arts and Archaeology respectively.

More about Valerio Massimo Manfredi

Genre: Roman

Born: 1942


Non Series

  • Spartan - Lo scudo di Talos (1988)
  • The Oracle - L'oracolo (1990)
  • The Talisman of Troy - Le paludi di Hesperia (1994)
  • The Tower - La torre della solitudine (1997)
  • Pharaoh - Il faraone delle sabbie (1998)
  • The Ancient Curse - L'antica maledizione (2001)
  • The Last Legion - L'ultima legione (2002)
  • Tyrant - Il Tiranno (2003)
  • Empire of Dragons - L'impero dei dragh (2005)
  • The Lost Army - L'armata perduta (2007)
  • The Ides of March - Idi di marzo (2008)
  • A Winter's Night - Otel Bruni (2011)
  • The Last Supper Host - L'ultima legione (2014)
  • Wolves of Rome - Teutoburgo (2018)

Alexander Trilogy

  1. Alexander: Child of a Dream - Il figlio del sogno (1998)
  2. The Sands of Ammon - Le sabbie di Amon (1998)
  3. The Ends of the Earth - Il confine del mondo (1998)

Detailed book overview

Non Series


Herodotus tells us that of the three hundred Spartan warriors who died in the battle of Thermopylae at the hands of King Xerxes of Persia, two who were saved brought back a life-saving message back to the city.

When two sons are born in a noble Spartan family, Brithos the elder son is raised in the caste of the warriors while Talos- having been spared a cruel death for being born lame- is raised among the peasants by a Helot shepherd.

They live in a word dominated by fierce battles between the Persian Empire and the city states of Greece, but sharing the same blood unites them in one thrilling enterprise.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Lo scudo di Talos
First Release: 1988
ISBN: 978-1416561606
Publisher: Washington Square Press
The Oracle

Professor Periklis Harvatis, while working late in the night in November 1973, locates a magnificent golden vase while on an important archaeological dig. The vase is engraved with stunning images depicting the mystery of Ulysses’s last and final voyage.

But right within the bleak chamber, he discovers something so dreadful that it leaves him a broken man; eventually found dead less than seven hours later, albeit not before ensuring the safety of the vase.

Ten years later, a series of ghastly deaths connected to the rape and murder are accompanied by dire quotes from the ancient sources-exposing a sinister mind behind these events.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'oracolo
First Release: 1990
ISBN: 978-1447276715
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
The Talisman of Troy

A castaway tossed onto an isolated beach is the final survivor of a world no longer in existence. With him is a fascinating story to tell; the true reason why the Trojan War was fought.

Diomedes is the protagonist of this particular tale; the last of the great ancient Greek Homeric heroes and a man who looks to return to his adored homeland after several years of war against Troy.

Betrayed by his wife who conspires to murder him whilst persecuted by hostile gods, he opts to sail west. He however carries with him the magic Talisman of Troy-a strange, powerful idol that can transform the nation that possesses it into an invincible.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Le paludi di Hesperia
First Release: 1994
ISBN: 978-0330426534
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
The Tower

It’s 70 AD, and Etruscan seer Avile Vipinas is the last survivor after a strange and brutal presence, hidden in a solitary tower at the extreme borders of the sea of sand, destroys a group of Roman soldiers crossing the Sahara desert. Etruscan is incomprehensibly saved by the sound of his silver sistrum.

Nineteen centuries later, Philip Garrett, a young American scholar, discovers the house of Avile Vipinas in the underground ruins of Pompeii-buried by the earthquake of 79 AD.

Which ancient civilization created the strange tower and for what purpose?

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: La torre della solitudine
First Release: 1997
ISBN: 978-1447276708
Publisher: Pan MacMillan

586 BC, Jerusalem, and the Kingdom of Judah is on the brink of utter obliteration by the Babylonians. Amidst the chaos, Prophet Jeremiah races to save the sacred Ark of the Covenant. As he makes his way to the preordained hiding place which will make it impossible to be found, he makes an astounding discovery; the Middle East…in the early 2000s.

Renowned Egyptologist, William Blake, has been summoned to oversee the discovery of a magnificent yet peculiar tomb of a Pharaoh. The tomb is however located several miles from the Valley of the Kings, in a sensitive military spot. His findings will lead to an astonishing discovery concerning Moses, the tribes of Israel and their flight from the land of Egypt.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Il faraone delle sabbie
First Release: 1998
ISBN: 978-1509801206
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
The Ancient Curse

Young archaeologist Fabrizio Castellani is deeply buried into his work in the dead of night when he discovers that the famous Etruscan statue, otherwise known as "the shade of twilight", contains a strange object. He is however interrupted by a phone call from an unwelcoming female voice, warning him to abandon the research.

A series of spine-chilling killings follow, in which the victims- seemingly ripped to shreds by a beast of unimaginable size- were all involved in the desecration of an unexplored tomb.

Fabrizio makes more extraordinary discoveries, but will he be able to unearth all these secrets without falling victim to the violence?

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'antica maledizione
First Release: 2001
ISBN: 978-1509801190
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
The Last Legion

It’s AD 476, and from the blanket of fog covering the countryside suddenly emerges a horde of barbarian horsemen; one that attacks the camp of Legio Nova Invicta.

The civilisation of Rome looks to be at an end, as the legendary Roman bastion was protecting thirteen-year-old Romulus Augustus-the last Roman emperor of the West.

Be that as it may, a handful of seemingly immortal legionnaires rise from the bloodied field of the massacre. On a fraught mission to free Romulus Augustus, they will show no remorse and no mercy…

The Last Legion
Director: Doug Lefler
Cast: Colin Firth, Thomas Sangster, Ben Kingsley, Kevin McKidd, Aishwarya Rai
Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'ultima legione
First Release: 2002
ISBN: 978-0743491983
Publisher: Washington Square Press

It’s Sicily 412 BC, and Dionysius, a man who has just made himself Tyrant of Syracuse, pits himself against the superpower Carthage-mercantile megalopolis and mistress of the seas.

Dionysius will over the next eight years unleash a brutal military conquest that will strike down enemies and friends alike; making Syracuse the most powerful Greek city west of mainland Greece.

But who really was Dionysius? Historians have castigated him for being one of the most heartless, self-absorbed despots, but was he was also an astute poet, a patron of the arts...a tender lover?

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Il Tiranno
First Release: 2003
ISBN: 978-1447276685
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
Empire of Dragons

Besieged by the Persian troops of Shapur I, the town of Edessa- a Roman outpost- is on the verge of collapsing. Recognizing the dire state, Roman Emperor Licinius Valerianus agrees to meet his nemesis to work out a peace treaty, but the Emperor and his twelve guards walk right into a trap; chained and dragged away to work as prisoners in a solitary Persian turquoise mine.

The Emperor as such dies months later from the forced labor but his guards, led by chief Marcus Metellus Aquila, make an audacious escape.

It is there that they meet Dan Qing, an exiled Chinese Prince, and together embark on the journey to China where they'll be shocked to discover that they were preceded in the Asian country centuries ago by the survivors of the 'lost legion'.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'impero dei dragh
First Release: 2005
ISBN: 978-1447276739
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
The Lost Army

In a village in Syria during the 4th century BC, a tattered woman covered in sores and blisters is seen approaching on the road from the north. Struck with rocks by suspicious villagers, she falls and appears dead.

The woman was the mistress of Xenophon, a general in the vast army of Greek mercenaries, and her story is one of the great collective acts of heroism in the ancient world.

The Lost Army is an adventure as viewed from the perspective of women who accompanied soldiers on their long journey.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'armata perduta
First Release: 2007
ISBN: 978-0230530676
Publisher: Macmillan
The Ides of March

March, 44 BC and Rome, under the leadership of Gaius Julius Caesar, expands her territories well beyond their wildest dreams. At only fifty-six years old, Pontifex Maximus, dictator perpetuo and invincible military leader, wields immense power throughout the boundless empire.

However his god-given mission of ending the blood-splattered fratricidal wars and reconciling hostile camps is on the verge of collapsing. With his power draining away and none of his supporters able to stop the inevitably changing plot against him, what is about to happen will change the world forever.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Idi di marzo
First Release: 2008
ISBN: 978-1933372990
Publisher: Europa Editions
A Winter's Night

Set during the first half of the twentieth century, A Winter's Night is about the Brunis; a family of farmers from the Italian Padan Plain.

Two worlds meet when the Brunis open up a great barn and offer it as a sanctuary for those seeking a warm, dry and safe place to eat and shelter.

In a world ever so rapidly changing, the book acts as a timely reminder; placing emphasis of the importance of maintaining simple values and living in solidarity with fellow human beings.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Otel Bruni
First Release: 2011
ISBN: 978-1609450762
Publisher: Europa Editions
The Last Supper Host

Son of landless peasants in Galilee under the brutal rule of the Romans, the protagonist of the story is forced to earn a living from inventing new jobs. From being a sailor with no luck to woodcutter, carpenter to winegrower, he eventually decides to venture into his own business, and opens up an inn.

But something unthinkable and shocking, well beyond his apprehension is about to happen. He will meet the son of a carpenter from Nazareth during a wedding banquet at Cana, in which he will witness something truly magnificent when they run out of wine.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: L'ultima legione
First Release: 2014
ISBN: 978-8898689507
Publisher: Wingsbert House
Wolves of Rome

Two fierce Germanic brothers, Armin and Wulf, are held hostage in Rome to prevent their father from rebelling against the Empire, in 3 BC.

As the years fly by, they are molded into ideal soldiers, with harmonious attributes of bravery, discipline and ruthlessness.

The two brothers, serving as Roman soldiers, are however separated at opposite ends of the Empire; with each proving their fighting mettle on the battlefield.

But as Armin’s ineluctable bond to his father and mother drives him to unite the tribes of Germania, Wulf, remains loyal to Rome.

There is where the real trouble begins…

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Teutoburgo
First Release: 2018
ISBN: 978-1509879007
Publisher: Pan MacMillan

Alexander Trilogy

Alexander: Child of a Dream

Even before the birth of his son Alexander, omens foretold that the son of warrior-king Philip of Macedonia was destined for greatness. A descendant of Heracles and Achilles, the young prince was trained by the finest of scholars and mightiest of soldiers to attain extraordinary strength-both of body and spirit.

Alexander endeavored to surpass the heroism and great honor of his ancestors, even taming the fierce steed Bucephalus in a single day. With the unwavering loyalty of a group of men, his might would materialize into dreams of conquest; from the cities of Persia to the mysterious East.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Il figlio del sogno
First Release: 1998
ISBN: 978-0743434362
Publisher: Washington Square Press
The Sands of Ammon

Alexander, the descendant of Achilles and king of Macedonia, follows in the footsteps of Agamemnon a thousand years after the Greek legend fought the Trojan War.

From Sardis and Miletus to Halicarnassus, he gathers a mighty force to liberate the Greek cities of Asia-but revenge is just one of his ambitions.

Yet battle after battle, his charge is blocked by one man...Memnon of Rhodes; a mercenary born in Greece but chosen by the Persian Great King to lead his vast army.

Memnon's wife captures Alexander’s heart, but neither courage nor love can tame his overriding destiny.

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Le sabbie di Amon
First Release: 1998
ISBN: 978-0743434379
Publisher: Washington Square Press
The Ends of the Earth

From overwhelming cities and armies, to uniting a vast army, Alexander has throughout his life defied the limits the gods gave mortals. Egypt crowned him Pharaoh and the Pan-Hellenic League named him Supreme Leader; He was a true heir to Achilles and Hercules.

Only conquering India stands in the way of controlling the whole of Asia, but his triumphs have come at a high cost-in betrayal, blood and tragedy.

Still, he seeks to transform the empire he had inherited into one he had dreamed of…

Author: Valerio Massimo Manfredi
Original Title: Il confine del mondo
First Release: 1998
ISBN: 978-0743434386
Publisher: Washington Square Press