BKMT READING GUIDES

Amora
by J. Grant Hallstrom

Published: 2020-09-08T00:0
Paperback : 333 pages
0 members reading this now
0 club reading this now
0 members have read this book
“Light at the end of the arched tunnel. Blood on the stone wall. Rust on the cell’s bars. The glance of a gladiator sitting in his cell. The soldier’s sandals stepping in front of her. Amora grasped every detail as her world moved in slow motion, drawing her closer to her fate. The ...
No other editions available.
Add to Club Selections
Add to Possible Club Selections
Add to My Personal Queue
Jump to

Introduction

“Light at the end of the arched tunnel. Blood on the stone wall. Rust on the cell’s bars. The glance of a gladiator sitting in his cell. The soldier’s sandals stepping in front of her. Amora grasped every detail as her world moved in slow motion, drawing her closer to her fate. The stench of death permeated the suffocating darkness, making a mockery of the heightened vitality within her. Her chains rattled, gears ground, animals roared, and people cheered. She gave them no heed. Amora, in an elegant white gown, moved with natural grace in front of a cell of prisoners. Her sixteen-year-old chained slave, Maria, followed behind wearing a simple tunic; a second soldier brought up the rear…”

With that introduction, author Grant Hallstrom draws you into the world of ancient Rome with its intrigue and contrasts, where he explores the timeless struggles between revenge and forgiveness, hope and despair, and loss and redemption.

This award-winning bestseller follows Amora on her path of self-discovery from her opulent teenage wedding with Leo through her life full of personal disappointment, tragedy, and betrayal, ultimately leading to peace in the face of death. We watch Leo withdraw into his dark private world of despair as he struggles to maintain his standing in society while trying to escape from the ever-present pain of loss. We delight in the romance between two slaves and champion the young man’s quest to avenge his lover’s untimely death. The sweeping panorama of this immersive story includes the suspense of battles and the action of gladiators fighting to survive in the arena as well.

The author weaves a well-crafted and deeply researched historical fiction based on a true story that will captivate the reader’s attention from the start. The book is filled with non-stop action and suspense, so you are never sure what’s about to happen on the next page. This superbly written and richly descriptive novel with brilliantly drawn characters and settings will have you turning pages from beginning to end. Skillfully constructed, cinematic in presentation and deeply inspiring, this thought-provoking book makes a solid impact.

Even though the book shows how new Christian ideas influenced some characters, it does not try to convert the reader. It simply tells the story including the role that religion played in their lives. Amora is ultimately a story about love, family, friendships, faith, trials and forgiveness. It is well worth the read!

Editorial Review

No Editorial Review Currently Available

Excerpt

Chapter 1??The Decision

Light at the end of the arched tunnel. Blood on the stone wall. Rust on the cell’s bars. The glance of a gladiator sitting in his cell. The soldier’s sandals stepping in front of her. Amora grasped every detail as her world moved in slow motion, drawing her closer to her fate. The stench of death permeated the suffocating darkness, making a mockery of the heightened vitality within her. Time began to transition to match the sound of the soldier’s steps. Her chains rattled, gears ground, animals roared, and people cheered. She gave them no heed.

Amora, in an elegant white gown, moved with natural grace in front of a cell of prisoners. Her sixteen-year-old chained slave, Maria, followed behind wearing a simple tunic; a second soldier brought up the rear. One of the prisoners, an old man, stood up and walked to the cell’s gate. He grabbed the bars and looked intently at Amora and Maria as they walked by. Amora maintained her focus on the light ahead. Maria glanced over and offered him a hint of a smile. He nodded.

Amora stepped out of the dark tunnel into the entrance corridor between the raised seating on both sides. The blinding light and ruthless roar of the crowd welcomed her. She ignored the garbage thrown by the heckling horde above. A ripe tomato hit Amora and splattered. Unfazed, she continued. An apple core bounced off Maria. She looked up toward the spectator who threw it and spotted Antonio among the mob, waving his arms and calling down to her.

“Maria! Maria!”

“Antonio!” she yelled as she slowed down and tried to raise her chained hands to motion to him. The soldier behind Maria shoved her, nearly knocking her over. Enraged, Antonio tried to jump into the passageway but was restrained on the edge of the Colosseum by two soldiers.

“Oh God! Help him,” Maria prayed.

The guards marched the prisoners to the front of the raised imperial box above the arena. Amora looked up at Emperor Marcus Aurelius. Various officials accompanied him while several soldiers stood guard. Amora stood erect in front of Caesar, awaiting her fate, unafraid, while Maria glanced around at the jeering crowd. Marcus gazed at Amora staring at him and turned aside. He rose to the roar of the crowd and raised both hands high to acknowledge their adulation.

The soldiers unchained their prisoners and exited the arena. Amora noticed her husband, Leo, sitting close by the imperial box. Tears welled up in her eyes as they met his gaze. She sensed Leo’s loneliness and desired to share the peace, vitality, and freedom she had discovered in her Lord. She offered Leo a quivering smile as tears streamed down her cheeks. Leo’s stone face melted as he watched Amora enunciating her words clearly so that he could read her lips.

“I love you,” she said.

Tears began to form involuntarily in Leo’s eyes. As they flowed down his cheeks, they began to dissolve the icy walls of his heart’s prison, allowing emotions to invade his private world. His eyes darted from side to side as he struggled to make sense of the renaissance of long-forgotten feelings and the scene in front of him.

After basking in his subjects’ praise, Caesar motioned to the crowd for silence. Once the thunder of the horde subsided, he stretched out his arm with his thumb sideways. The mob began to chant, “Death. Death. Death.”

The gravity of Leo’s actions pressed heavily upon his conscience. He grimaced, slightly shook his head, and jumped up, determined to gain Caesar’s attention. Waving his arms wildly, he yelled, “Mercy! Mercy! Mercy!”

Leo caught the emperor’s eye.

“For the sake of Jupiter, Caesar, show her mercy!” Leo bellowed.

Marcus stared at his friend for a few moments, analyzing his options before he again surveyed the crowd, which was chanting “Death” more loudly. Caesar glanced over at Senator Quintus and Prefect Rusticus, who were sitting next to him, and then back at Leo pleading for mercy. Marcus turned to face the crowd beyond his outstretched arm, waiting, as a hush began to fall over the Colosseum. All eyes were glued to Caesar. view abbreviated excerpt only...

Discussion Questions

Who was your favorite character and why?
Do you think the author intended Amora to become a Christ figure? How was she?
How did this book impact your life and ideas?
How have you or others dealt with tragedy?
What did you learn from reading this book?
Who would you recommend this book to and why?

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

No notes at this time.

Book Club Recommendations

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
There are no user reviews at this time.
Rate this book
MEMBER LOGIN
Remember me
BECOME A MEMBER it's free

Now serving over 80,000 book clubs & ready to welcome yours. Join us and get the Top Book Club Picks of 2022 (so far).

SEARCH OUR READING GUIDES Search
Search




FEATURED EVENTS
PAST AUTHOR CHATS
JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

Get free weekly updates on top club picks, book giveaways, author events and more
Please wait...