Amazon UK reviews

I haven’t kept these up to date, so apologies. Here are some sparkling new ones:

5.0 out of 5 stars A great story and a convincing and internally consistent alternate world, 2 Jan 2014
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)
Alison Morton pulls off the trick of creating an alternate world that is not only internally consistent but wholly convincing. This is all the more impressive since the point of departure from actual history is near the fall of the Western Roman Empire, while the action is set in the early 21st Century. Morton avoids the temptation of locating Roma Nova, the surviving Roman Republic, in Rome itself and instead places it somewhere in Slovenia where mountainous terrain allows its defence and survival in much the same way as the Swiss Federation. An interesting twist is the increasingly proactive role taken by women over the centuries, leading to a mater-lineal society in which leadership by women would be accepted well before the 21st Century. Developments elsewhere in the world are convincingly sketched in the initial historical note – the story opens in the “Eastern United States of America”, a smaller and indeed more nasty nation than the full 50-state US today. All this is background but it provides a convincing context in which the story’s action will play out. And entertaining and surprising this story turns out to be – action and surprises a plenty, and all the more convincing for Ms. Morton’s (or is it just her heroine Carina’s?) mastery of various forms of deadly force. There’s an admirable, indomitable but sometimes vulnerable heroine, a thoroughly unpleasant villain who deserves come-uppance, and a range of other characters who are, morally, of various shades of grey. I thoroughly enjoyed Inceptio and look forward to reading Perfiditas, which I’ve already downloaded, and look forward to Carina’s yet further adventures. She’ll be giving Marcus Didius Falco a run for his money in the Roman Crime genre, even if the eras are two millenia apart.


5.0 out of 5 starsDon’t miss this fabulous book, 2 Dec 2013
By L. M. Wilson “korcula blue” (Redcar, Cleveland United Kingdom)
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My number one genre is historical novels and the Roman period in particular; and this book is fabulous! When I read that Alison’s novel is described as a What if?” book and a time slip one too, I was immediately interested. The “What if?” concept fascinates me. I was absorbed from the opening line and the very first page. I almost always have about five books all on the go, but when I began this one I never stopped until I finished the last page; and I wished there had been more. Alison has written an exciting, thought provoking,intriguing and fast-paced book; about an alternative Rome that is fresh and truly original. Without giving too much away, the heroine, a modern day American girl, finds herself transported back in time to Roma Nova. Alison combines the complexity of merging the past with the future brilliantly. The balance is perfect! Her plot is perfectly executed and her main characters change and develop throughout the story line as they should. Buy this book, read it….. and you will not regret it; it’s worth every penny. I absolutely loved it! One of my top books of the year! Her second novel is on my Christmas list but not sure I can wait that long!


5.0 out of 5 stars A wow of a read!, 27 Nov 2013
By Helen Hollick “H.” (UK)
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)
I’ve had this on my Kindle for quite a while – just needed time to read it. And what a read! Forget finding time – everything else took second place – I loved this book! It is well written, fast-paced, absorbing and intriguing. The characters are believable – and the plot and setting equally so, even though belief of reality must be entirely suspended.What I found most thrilling was that this is not a run-of-the-mill thriller, nor is it historical fiction, but the idea of combining an alternative history with a darn good thriller is fantastic.
Why on earth is Alison Morton self published? This is high quality mainstream stuff, just proving that Indie writers are every bit as good as – if not better than – traditionally published authors!
Well done Alison – more please!


4.0 out of 5 stars A gripping story, 13 Sep 2013
This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Inceptio is set in an alternate future where the US is now the Eastern United States and a country called Roma Nova hidden between New Austria and Italy. Karen Brown is set to become a rich woman but soon finds herself on someone’s hit list. Mysterious strangers appear from a land called Roma Nova and she is left wondering who she can trust.

Inceptio moves along at a frenetic pace. There is so much going on and within the space of a few chapters, the story may have moved on months. But it is written in a way that doesn’t allow you to sit still. That’s good for me, because I get bored too easily.

The characters are well rounded, although there are quite a few to remember and I did have trouble keeping track of who was who, but after a while, you hone in on the characters you care about; Karen, Conrad, Nonna, Renschman.

Beautifully descriptive and I loved the latin theme. It made the story feel old-world without it being that way.

A gripping story and well worth a look.

5.0 out of 5 stars It is impossible to put this book down!, 6 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Inceptio (Roma Nova) (Paperback)

The concept of an alternative history thriller is what initially attracted me to Inceptio… but it was the engaging protagonist and gripping story line that got me hooked. I didn’t notice the time passing and read the entire thing in about three sittings – I just couldn’t put it down!

I won’t give too much away about the story line, but I will say that you should be prepared for a few dramatic twists! This was a thoroughly enjoyable read and I am excited for the next two books in the trilogy. I simply cannot recommend Inceptio enough – just go and buy it!

5.0 out of 5 stars Inceptio, 26 May 2013
By Rosemary Wilkie (UK) – See all my reviews

This is an exceptionally good book with a highly original story, clever plotting and vivid characterisation. It kept me turning the pages into the small hours, and when I reached the end I read it again.
Rosemary Wilkie, author,

5.0 out of 5 stars  Feel the threat and face it anyway, 24 May 2013

I would never normally pick up an alternate history thriller, although I did enjoy Robert Harris’s Fatherland. So when a friend recommended Inceptio I was a little sceptical. But from the first page I was hooked. And only a few chapters in I was totally immersed in Morton’s creation of a country called Roma Nova, based on ancient Roman values and traditions, albeit that it is a country run by women – a little unnerving for an English bloke to visualise!

Carina, the gutsy New York heroine, is completely believable, as is her lover, Conrad, and the rest of the imperial family and amazing line-up of military colleagues and bad boys. (I was grateful for the cast of characters at the front which I often referred to, as the reader has to grapple with the many Roman names and diminutives and aliases.) Carina grows in confidence and ability as the story develops, and the surprise twist ending comes as quite a shock, though, of course, it all makes sense.

I’m looking forward to Perfiditas, the next one in the series, of which the author has generously let us have a glimpse at the back of Inceptio.

Edward Stanton

5.0 out of 5 starsMove aside Bourne, there’s a new heroine in town!
, 20 Mar 2013

By Richard Hallman (East Herts, UK) – See all my reviews

Being a fan of Robert Harris’s alternate reality masterpiece Fatherland, as well as his Cicero series, I thought this seemed like a great premise for a book – and I was right!

The author keeps the plot whistling along at a great pace, which reminded me of the “Bourne” films – as does the main protagonist. I must say I subsequently read Ludlum’s Bourne books after having seen and enjoyed the films, but I found Alison’s writing in Inceptio to be far better than Mr Ludlum’s (sorry to any of his fans) – she has a much lighter, organised touch that keeps you on top of who’s doing what, where and why.

The heroine is well drawn, and despite the dramatic plot twists and her progression throughout the novel, you always keep a good idea of who she is. Apart from Bourne, she reminds me a bit of Patricia Cornwell’s Scarpetta – a tough, no nonsense character with a good store of one liners – but some vulnerability hidden away.

I certainly want to know more about Roma Nova – in fact that’s my only slight niggle with the book – I’d like to have read more “day to day” stuff, although I can imagine more readers expecting a thriller would disagree with me. Perhaps a companion volume to sate those interested in more of the differences between Roma Nova and reality – “What Carina did on her day off”??

I shan’t say too much about the storyline as I don’t want to give away too many spoilers, but with rattling plot, great locations, a dastardly villain and love interest sprinkled throughout, the reader is in for a great ride – I defy anyone not to finish this book in double quick time.

5.0 out of 5 stars 21st Century Rome. Who’d have thought it?
6 April 2013
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

I always love a what-if story for example. What if Harold had won the Battle of Hastings would our native language have still been Anglo-Saxon? And what-if Anne Boleyn hadn’t miscarried would the Hanoverians have been just overweight aristocrats in middle Europe? It’s because I love to ponder alternative historical conundrums that I was drawn to Ms Morton’s debut novel.
Although opening in present day NY the action swiftly moves to Roma Nova, modern state in Northern Italy, rules by women and the descendent of Imperial Rome.
After intervening to stop a mugging the heroine Karen Brown comes to the notice of the Government agent Renschman who has his own sinister reasons for being interested in her fate. After almost being killed Karen is afraid to trust anyone including the charismatic Conrad Tellus who recounts to her the untold story of her parents.
You will find yourself drawn quickly into Karen’s fast-paced change of fortune and Ms Morton’s alternative Roman world. With cleverly drawn characters and breath-holding suspense you will soon be turning the final page and wishing there were more. Can’t wait to read what happens next to Karen in PERFIDITAS.

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read… Couldn’t put it down., 24 Mar 2013
By L. Wilson (England) – See all my reviews
This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

Very well written. From the beginning you can really connect with the central character, Karen Brown and are right on her side willing her to survive, as you follow her from life in New York, to her settling into a new life in Roma Nova. The transformation in her character is fantastically described.

Reading a book in under a couple of days is a first for me but Inceptio grips and leaves you wanting more. It’s a fantastic read, thrilling with many twists and turns right up till the end. Looking forward to reading the next!

4.0 out of 5 stars  Looking for an alternative? Try this one…, 23 Mar 2013

I grew up with alternative history but, in my case, it was the novels of Michael Moorcock that grabbed my attention. He had a real knack for creating heroes and heroines that were conflicted but always clearly “the good guys”, with antagonists who were similarly complex but always the very embodiment of evil. Alsion Morton’s writing style may be very different from Moorcock’s but she has the same knack. Her novel INCEPTIO pits tough Karen Brown against a creepily cruel Renschman, set against the backdrop of a thriving European state called Roma Nova, which has managed to survive successfully as a lasting descendant of the Roman Empire. The author creates this alternative Europe graphically, as well as the way it has helped to shape the rest of the world – although, personally, I would have liked to know a lot more about the impact of this different geo-politics. All the same, the plot cracks on at a great pace and the action scenes plus the characters are well-drawn. Well done, Alison. Great read!

5.0 out of 5 stars A perfect escape., 18 Mar 2013
By D. Carr (Channel Islands) – See all my reviews
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I literally couldn’t stop reading this fast-paced book starting in alternative, present day New York and moving to Roma Nova, a European country run by female descendents of exiled Romans from centuries before. The heroine, Karen Brown, a hard-working girl with very little going on in her life, soon finds everything she’s ever known being flipped on its head. She meets Conrad Tellus – a hero in all senses of the word – and comes up against the vicious, relentless cruelty of Renschman, a man determined to make Karen pay – for what, she’s not too sure. The story sees Karen developing from an ordinary woman with not much going on into someone who can more than take care of herself and with everything to lose. The world that Alison Morton creates in this book is one I can’t wait to revisit. A perfect escape.

4.0 out of 5 stars  Strange and Compelling, 13 Mar 2013
By Bettina Cassidy (Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent United Kingdom) – See all my reviews
This review is from: Inceptio (Roma Nova) (Paperback)

Alison Morton was a Roman Empire nut from an early age, and when she asked herself “if women had taken over the Roman Empire, how different would the world be?” she never stopped thinking about the answer. Thank goodness for obsessive types like Alison, because it means that she was impelled to write this cracking novel.

It’s hard to classify this book as it’s got a bit of everything in it; part romance, part thriller, and who doesn’t love a bit of parallel history? Its mix of genres may have confused mainstream publishers, but it’s definitely got screen adaptation written all over it. Clever, unique, thought-provoking, yet accessible.

5.0 out of 5 stars  A real page turner, 7 Mar 2013
By AuntySee all my reviews
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This review is from: Inceptio (Roma Nova) (Paperback)

INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) by Alison Morton
“Brilliant. Fantastic. . This book did not disappoint. I read it within three days, could not put it down. I was attracted to the cover straight away. I wanted to find out more about Karen ( the main character), how she overcame her personal challenges just to stay alive. A true heroine! Really looking forward to the next book. When is that please?”

5.0 out of 5 stars  Can’t wait for the next book in the series, 6 Mar 2013
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

You can never be sure what you’re going to get with a new author, but this was a fabulous piece of writing.

The storyline was great (with plenty to keep you going), just the right amount of description (I get a bit bored with some books where there is too much description and repetition as they describe things using the same terms over and over again), and great characters that you can really identify with.

I want to live in Roma Nova now, and cannot wait for the next installation.

4.0 out of 5 stars  Inceptio, 6 Mar 2013
By SparkySee all my reviews
This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

This book is a fantastic read, the words fly of the page to you. You instantly feel you are their amoungst the characters. It’s full of mystery and the plot is cleverly thought out.

‘A must-read novel’ …. All credit given to the author …

Ruth Rayment

5.0 out of 5 stars A different idea, 4 Mar 2013
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

This has a different idea for its basic idea. I am not going to give too much away, after all the idea of this review is to get you to buy the book!
There were some very good “goodies” and amongst the “baddies” was a really nasty piece of work.
I found the book a pleasure to read and a few times I did think “what if?”
I will happily recommend this for anyone who like the thriller genre and I am looking forward to the next book in the series

5.0 out of 5 stars  Gripping and fast moving- go buy it, 4 Mar 2013
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This review is from: INCEPTIO (Roma Nova) (Kindle Edition)

This isn’t usually the genre of book I would usually read, but I was so pleased I did. Right from the beginning I was drawn into the story and the characters and I was then kept there. The book was so good I started reading it at 2pm on Saturday afternoon and finished it at midday the next day!!! The story was believable all the way through and there was so much detail you could actually envisage what was happening.
I have been looking for a book that kept me engrossed from start to finish for a long time, and I can’t wait for the second book to be published!!
I don’t usually do reviews for book purchases, but was so pleased with this one I thought it was worthy of five stars.
Go out and buy it now! 🙂