The year is 227 B.C., shortly before the earthquake occurs that destroys The Colossus of Rhodes, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. Tessa of Delos has been enslaved 10 long years as a hetaera (a Greek courtesan) to the island's most powerful men, and she wants nothing more than to end her life. But when her current owner's rival plots to take over the island, Tessa is drawn into a web of political intrigue as well as an unlikely romance with a stranger (who just might find a way to finally set her free).
My stepmother read this last September and she liked it so much, I just bought her the newly released book 2 in the Seven Wonders series about the Pyramids at Giza called CITY OF THE DEAD.
The story and the character interaction held my interest well enough, but the real star of this show was the setting - and the fact that I was actually in Rhodes while reading this. Although all traces of the Colossus are long gone, I did visit the harbour area and Jewish quarter where a lot of the action takes place.
SHADOW OF COLOSSUS is available in paperback now.
So now I can finally share a few "highlights" from my Rhodes trip (one for each day I was there).
1. Most memorable was my friend Heather driving our rental car into the sand on the beach and getting stuck. We didn't panic though. Soon enough, a whole group of Greek men was helping us try to dig it out and pushing with all their might. When that didn't work, a man with a tow-line was called in and our car was pulled to safety. My other friend Tracy has a ton of pictures which I hope to be given one of these days (hint, hint!).
2. My sightseeing highlight was walking along the wall that surrounds Rhodes Old Town. You get great views of the city and the ocean, and it just feels cool to walk around on something so ancient.
3. I also very much enjoyed just walking through the tiny, winding alleys of both Rhodes Old Town and Lindos Old Town. There are a ton of cute little shops and restaurants with very friendly yet polite propriators.
4. We visited a couple of very nice beaches as well that were practically empty. The water was too cold for me to swim (though Heather took a dip) but the sun was warm (and shining - unlike Frankfurt) and the general atmosphere was very relaxing. Low season rules!
5. I think I mentioned that the food was amazing. There wasn't one thing I put in my mouth that I didn't just want to rave about. Rhodes is known for its delicious Thyme flavored honey and let me tell you, the resulting baklava is to die for.