This time next week you can be reading the third murder mystery where Philocles the playwright must investigate a suspicious death during the Great Panathenaia that marked the start of the classical Greek new year in high summer.
There’s no drama contest at this particular festival, so Philocles and Zosime are looking forward to the holiday. Visitors are coming from across the Hellenic world for eight days of sporting competitions, musical contests and sacred rites to honour Athena, the city’s patron goddess.
Thousands will flock to the Pnyx to be enthralled by the dramatic three-day performance of Homer’s Iliad, an entertainment unique to this event. Taking part, as the episodes of the famous narrative are passed from performer to performer, is the highest honour and greatest challenge for an epic poet. Then one of the poets is brutally murdered.
Is this random misfortune, some old score being settled, or is someone trying to sabotage the festival? The powerful and influential men of the city want this cleared up quickly and quietly. Philocles finds himself on the trail of a killer once more…
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