I have read most of Diana Preston's books and this one ranks right up among her best. And who would have guessed it given the subject matter? Not her American publisher who either did not offer this in hardback or had so few copies it was no where to be found. Preston says she put Cleopatra's name first in the title because Cleopatra often gets send billing to Caesar and Mark Antony. But in fact the book is mostly about Roman Politics, culture, war making and hypocrisy and how Cleopatra leveraged personal power to save her country from being just another Roman colony. I am not a student of Roman history and found Preston's narrative to be both entertaining and enlightening. She comes up with so much detail and yet has a writing style that is minimalist and to the point in telling the story and explaining why the story is important to the history of the various participants. I found this to be mostly Rome's history with an emphasis on Egypt's impact on the Rome during the interesting times of these two major icons of the ages, Mark Antony and Cleopatra. If you're at all interested in the subject I highly recommend this book to you.