Saturday, February 14, 2009

Flavia's wedding

In honour of Valentine's Day, a teaser from the final book in the series:
Flavia at the Villa Limona in The Sirens of Surrentum
Fifteen-year-old Flavia Gemina trembled as her stepmother advanced steadily towards her, a spear pointed at her head.

‘Are you sure it’s supposed to be so sharp?’ whimpered Flavia.

‘This is the same one they used on me three years ago,’ said her stepmother with a smile. ‘And so far the gods have blessed my marriage to your father.’

‘But couldn’t you just use a very dull spearhead?’ pleaded Flavia. ‘Instead of the whole thing on its shaft?’

‘No. We have to part your hair seven times with the point of a sharp spear. That’s the way it’s done.’

A lovely blonde girl stepped forward. Pulchra was almost a year older than Flavia. ‘When I got married last spring,’ said Pulchra, ‘three women held the spear. Nubia, come help me.’

Flavia’s dark-skinned friend Nubia came forward. She and Pulchra grasped the shaft behind the spearhead while Flavia’s young stepmother shifted her grip slightly. Then the three of them carefully used the point of the spear to part Flavia’s light brown hair, first in the middle, then three times on either side. Flavia tried hard not to tremble and it only pricked once.

‘There,’ said Pulchra. ‘That wasn’t so bad, was it?’

‘I suppose not,’ said Flavia, but she kept her head perfectly still in case she lost the partings. ‘Are you going to plait in the blue ribbons and pearls you brought me, Pulchra?’

‘Me? Do the job of an ornatrix? Certainly not! Leda will do your hair. Now sit in this chair by the balcony. We can use the light of the setting sun.’

Flavia glanced at Pulchra’s slave-girl Leda and smiled. Although she and Pulchra had been writing to each other regularly for the past few years, Flavia had forgotten how imperious her friend could be.

‘However,’ said Pulchra, ‘I will do your makeup, because that requires the skill of a true artist.’ As Leda and Nubia moved behind Flavia to do her hair, Pulchra went to get the make-up tray.

‘Don’t listen to her,’ laughed Flavia’s stepmother over her shoulder. She had draped the gauzy, saffron-yellow wedding veil over the balcony so that she could sprinkle it with rose water. ‘You’ve become a lovely young woman.’

Pulchra sat on a small stool in front of Flavia and rested the tray on her lap. ‘All I meant,’ she said, ‘was that tonight is the most important night of her life. We don’t want the bridegroom having second thoughts.’

‘He won’t have second thoughts,’ said Flavia’s stepmother. ‘He’s besotted with Flavia.’

‘Humph,’ said Pulchra, and to Flavia: ‘Are you nervous?’

‘Of course not.’

‘You’re not nervous that in a very short time your bridegroom is going to burst in here and snatch you from our arms and carry you off to his bed while boys in the procession sing lewd songs and pelt you with nuts?’

‘No,’ said Flavia. ‘I’m euphoric. It’s my dream come true.’

‘I do wish you’d tell me more about this man you’re marrying.’ Pulchra unscrewed a little tin pot and sniffed the contents with satisfaction. ‘You’re so secretive about him in your letters.’

‘You’ll meet him soon.’

Flavia meets her bridegroom in The Man from Pomegranate Street
You can find out whom Flavia marries in The Man from Pomegranate Street.

[The 17+ books in the Roman Mysteries series are perfect for children aged 9+, especially those studying Romans at Key Stage 2 and 3. The DVDs are not currently being printed but you can download episodes from the first series via iTunes HERE.]


  1. filippa4:52 PM

    oh my god!!!

    i cant wait to find out who it is. i so so wanted her to get married to floppy (sorry, i just cant think of him as flaccus)...could this still happen???


  2. Anonymous8:50 PM

    i am so excited about the new book.
    all the rest were so exciting, but i expect this will be the best. i can't wait until june!!!

  3. Oh, now I really want to know who it is! I can't wait for the final book.

  4. Promise not to skip ahead, but read it page by page!

  5. I absolutely cannot wait for the last book! I've been following the series since book one... even though I really am too old. My 7 yr old son refers to them as "mommy's books". Coincidentally, he wants to try reading them... we'll see. :)

    Although I see Flavia marrying Floppy, I actually have someone else in mind. Though, I don't know if it would work out for them or not.

  6. Hmmm. I'd love to know who else you have in mind? Email me at

  7. i love the roman mysteries and can't wait for Flavia to get married, i hope it's floppy. is the Prophet from Ephesus out yet?

    I love your work

  8. Thanks, Bookworm! I'm rooting for Floppy, too! But you never know... Sometimes my characters don't always do what I tell them to do! ;-)

    The Prophet from Ephesus is out and should be in all good bookstores!


  9. ...I can't wait till june now!!
    but who will flavia marry???
    please be floppy because i think he still loves her despite being engaged and he wouldn't have got engaged if he knew she was alive. i think prudentillia should betray him, or try to hurt flavia or something that would make flaccus hate her.
    i think flavia's father will marry diana because you said to someone in fanmail that she also gets married in book 17
    was aristo about to say he loved nubia in the prophet from ephesus when he took her hand??
    in this passage it says that flavia is 15 where did the 3 years go?? she was 12 in the scribes from alexandria, and the next book will probably start soon after the last. does this mean some time will be skipped??

  10. All will be explained... not long to wait now! :-)

  11. _Monix_book_worm_12:45 PM

    uuuhhh......My hearts bouncing UP AND DOWN..... I really want Flavia to marry Floppy ( hehe... can't get Flaccus in my mind.... it sounds.... not "me" )


    He'S perfect for Flavia... But I do have this small spot for Tranquillus... And Jonathan... haha..... Can't decide... For now, Floppy's her man... Arggghhh.... I CANNOT WAIT ! I wonder... It might be another man... Who can it be ??? Lupus...???? Jonathan.... ????? aristo ??? Not a chance..... Ok.. Now i dunno wat im talking about.....But i need 2 know d answer >:(

  12. As Pseudolus says in A Funny Thing Happened: 'Calm... calm... I'll tell you when it's time to panic...'

  13. Anonymous7:14 PM

    Plz don't let me down I am badly hoping for it to be Floppy that Flavia marries. And I would also like it if you maybe got prudentillia married off to someone else so that leaves floppy free to get married to Flavia. Oh the wait is killing me!!! I want to know who she marries

  14. Anonymous7:53 PM

    This is so exciting I want to know who marries Flavia.... hoping its Floppy, but even if it isn't all that matters is that Flavia is happy. I don't think I can wait till june ...... its too long

  15. Anonymous7:55 PM

    I am guessing that this teaser from twitter is supposed to be about Tranquillius:

    'His lips were wet and warm and tasted faintly of posca. The kiss was not unpleasant, but it didn’t make Flavia's heart beat faster.'

  16. Ooh! Clever you! You are absolutely right... Narrows it down a little, doesn't it?

  17. Anonymous7:03 PM

    This teaser must be Flaccus but I am again guessing that he is talking to Flavia...:

    ‘Only you,’ he said, ‘are allowed to call me Floppy.’

  18. I certainly hope it's Flavia he's talking to! ;-)

  19. Molly Ann8:06 PM

    I only know Floppy from the TV Series...Gotta get on and read them all by June! But he does seem very nice for Flavia...
    But, like the sad little soul I am, I have been pondering about who Nubia will marry...The obvious answer is Aristo, but my sister has her money on Sisyphus, for some reason!

  20. Salve, Molly Ann! Ohmygosh you HAVE to read all the books with Floppy in them. Start with The Colossus of Rhodes, then read The Sirens of Surrentum, then The Slave-girl from Jerusalem, then The Beggar of Volubilis and finally The Prophet from Ephesus. Then you'll be ready for The Man from Pomegranate Street...

    As for Nubia marrying Sisyphus: !?!?!

  21. Anonymous10:38 AM

    I hope Nubia doesn`t get married to Aristo because she would always be second to Miriam even though she is dead as for Flavia her and Flaccus go together why did he get bethored to that airhead Prundellia?Also is there any events that take place in Northern Ireland as would love to go toa book signing etc

  22. I might do an event in Northern Ireland in October. Check my EVENTS page regularly... Do you think Aristo really loved Miriam? Or was it just infatuation?

  23. Lucky7:52 PM

    Salve Caroline,
    I believe that Aristo's feelings for Miriam was just an infatuation (what you have mentioned above)because he had loved her but for what she looked like not for what she was. For example Flaccus only started to develop feelings for Flavia once he got to know her, he did not fall in love with her for her looks but for the kind of person she is.... This is called TRUE love.

  24. Lucky8:18 PM

    Salve Caroline,

    I am glad you agree...

  25. Anonymous12:26 PM

    Although Flavia managed to fall in love with Felix even though she hardly knew him as it says in one of the books when she found a man whoose image pleases her she made her ideal man out of I think Aristo might have done the same with Miriam but maybe like Flavia he will get over it

  26. Well remembered! In The Twelve Tasks of Flavia Gemina Cartilia says: ‘Pygmalion carved his ideal woman in his studio. We women carve the ideal man in our hearts. We find someone whose appearance pleases us and then we create a man in their likeness and place him in our dreams. We build a whole life. One scene on another. And because we build them in our dreams, they’re perfect. So we fall hopelessly in love. But we love a phantom. An image.’

  27. Anonymous11:00 AM

    Is Pulchra going to get married to Jonathan or is going marry someone from the patrician class as she said in sirens of surrentum

  28. Pollius Felix was a real person and we know the name of the person his eldest daughter married. If you do a bit of Googling you will probably find the answer! Or you can just wait another six weeks to find out by reading The Prophet from Ephesus!

  29. P.S. use the words 'Statius' and 'son-in-law' and 'Pollius-Felix' in your search!

  30. Anonymous12:24 PM

    Who will Jonathan and Lupus get married to will it be Clio for Lupus

  31. Anonymous4:34 PM

    OMG, OMG, OMG!! If flavia marries anyone but floppy then i think i shall cry and burn my entire series :'(...please let her marry floppy!!!

  32. Oh dear! Well, I'll see what I can do... wouldn't want you to burn your entire series, would we? ;-)

  33. Millie1:54 PM

    WoW! :-)

    I can't wait to get the book and find out who Flavia marrys!

  34. Anonymous4:47 PM

    I realllllllllllllllllllly want you to have her marry Jonathan, I know everyone wants Floppy and i do in a way, BUT a good writer always throws the unexpected? I will probably cry and throw myself off a bridge if Flavia doesn't marry Jonathan.
    either ways, I wouldn't be so horrified if She married Floppy, though I'm happy standing alone with Jonathan/Flavia!!!

  35. Ponygirl298:28 AM


    O.M.G. I canNOT wait to find out who Flavia marries! I want about 40% of me for Flavia to marry Jonathan,and the rest Flaccus, aka Floppy!!

    I'm a bit annoyed. I'm from New Zealand, that's near Australia, and as far as I know,'The Scribes from Alexandria' hasn't arrived, so I'll probably have to wait longer than most of your other fans for 'The Man frpm Pomegranate Street! Grrrrrr!

    BTW, my favorite book is the srens of surrentum

  36. Salve, Pony Girl! Not too long to wait now. You can always order the books through!

    P.S. The Sirens of Surrentum is my favourite, too!

  37. Rachel12:25 PM

    i really really really hope that flavia marries floppy! they would be so cute! but i have that sinking feeling.... by the way, any body had the same thoughts that someone is going to be killed off in the man from pomegranate street? im dying to read it... but the books never come out in asia until about 3 months after the initial release date :( so sad...

  38. Salve, Rachel!

    Don't be sad. Pre-order The Man from Pomegranate Street through and you could have it before June is out! :-)

  39. Martyn Steel12:14 PM

    I cant wait for the Final Book.
    Ive yet too read The Prophet from Esphesus, but its being ordered now :)
    I know everyone wants Flavia to marry Flaccus, but I have an idea that would be a great plot twist.

  40. Salve, Martyn!

    I'd love to know your idea for a plot twist. Unfortunately I won't be able to use it as the book has gone to the printers and will be out in a month!

    Vale. Flavia AKA Caroline

  41. Anonymous8:51 PM

    its not flaccus is it ? oh my god its NOT !

  42. OMG I've been reading all your tweets and I cannot believe all the things they hint at!! Also I did the googling and found who Pulchra marries - but I won't say - I don't know if it is right though.

    Flavia HAS to be with Flaccus they are PERFECT together!!!

    BTW way I just sent you an email - could u possibly reply sometime?

    Love your books!

  43. Salve, Shanti! Thanks for your email; I've replied and put an excerpt on my FANMAIL page. Vale.

  44. Anonymous9:02 PM

    Salve evereyone

    If caroline went with public vote then it will be floppy but i think it should be astro, think back to the first book, then again maybe it is Jonathan,

  45. If Flavia married Aristo I don't think Nubia would ever forgive her! Not long to wait now...

    ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!
    I love your books by the way.

  47. Niamh4:45 PM

    I am sooo excited i cant wait 4 the last book 2 come out ive ordered it at waterstones but they said it might b a few days late ill be so raged if it is also who is that mysterious stepmother in the blog plz tell me

  48. The first copies came off the press today! It should be in your local Waterstones soon! I'll be signing books in person at Waterstones at the Putney Exchange on Thursday 18 June from 5.00 - 6.00pm...

  49. niamh (again!)5:06 PM

    The only problem with going to any of your events is their in england or scotland or wales and i live in northen ireland and to be honest i am never gonna save up enough money to get to mainland britain i have more important things to buy like books and ......more books.ahh that is not fair

  50. Anonymous6:32 PM

    WOW.......Who is he????? Come on...!!!!

  51. The answers to all your questions are in the latest book - The Man from Pomegranate Street - and it's out now!

  52. Ponygirl291:14 AM

    Hi it's Ponygirl29 (again!)

    Just a question: Why is there a picture of a howling wolf (or is it a dog?) on the cover of 'The Man from Pomegranate Street'? Has it got something to do with Lupus?
    Speaking of Lupus, I was just thinking how funny it would be if Flavia married Lupus!

  53. Josephine7:07 PM


    I soooooo want Flavia to marry Jonathan. I know it's funny but he is perfect for her in my point of view.
    He knows what she has been threw and he want make her act like proper roman lady.
    I can't wait to read the last book. Do you think you're going to write any more different sets of books?

  54. bookworm9:19 AM

    awww MAN, i knnow the man from pomegranate is out now, but here (i'm from new zealand BTW)it probably won't get out until, like, march 2010 or something. and i cant even use because we use dollars not pounds!

    pleeeeaaase can u at least tell me who flavia's stepmum is? not even the scribes from alexandrea is out yet!
    BTW, i LOVE the slavegirl from jerusalem. :)

  55. Sorry but you KNOW I can't tell you who Flavia's stepmother is! If you order the book from you'll have it in ten days!

  56. Anonymous2:45 PM

    Hmm... in your teaser Pulchra wants to know more about the man Flavia is marrying, and doesn't seem to know much about him. Makes me think it can't be Flaccus, as Pulchra wanted to marry him herself at one point. This is very confusing.

  57. Yes, that IS very confusing... Who could he be?

    I know: read the book and find out! ;-)

  58. By the way, will you be writing any sequels or any more books because I love your stories! I started reading the 1st one last year when I got it as a present for my 15th birthday from my Granny and ever since then I have been hooked

  59. How do I find out who Pulchra married.
    Oh I am rooting for Johnathon I think she turns to Johnathon's faith and they marry!
    Does Aristo ever tell Nubia that he loves her? Will they marry?

  60. To find out who marries Pulchra, read The Man from Pomegranate Street. Sorry I didn't publish your other message: too many spoilers! Email me directly on

  61. To find out the answers to your questions, please look at my FAQS page before you email me. That's what it's there for!

  62. Oh My Goodness!!!

    i just read the final book and IT. WAS. AMAZING.

    i loved how you made me think of many different endings, one after the other, and then came to a completely different conclusion

    i also love how you made aristo completely clueless in the prophet from ephesus by the assumptions that nubia was in love with flaccus. it gave me a fit of giggles :D

    and who pulchra married!! i was rooting for jonathan, but i always thought it would be a stretch. i laughed at his name :)

    but i got my assumptions about diana correct though, even though i had no idea how

    thank you for creating the roman mysteries and i hope some of the loose ends will be tied up in the flavian trillogy next year

    Josie :)

  63. Anonymous5:07 PM

    The last book was soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo brilliant I couldnt put it down(literally)i read it ALL in 3 and a half hours!!!!ps even through Domitian didnt do it he was still evil i mean look wat he did to nubia

  64. Emma the poet1:41 PM

    Dear Caroline.
    I can't say how much your books mean to me, they have, I think completely changed me as a person and a writer! I am eternally grateful to you for writing them.I havn't read 'The Man from Pomegranite street' as of yet... but I am utterly desperate to!

    I have a very unorigional side of the Flavia/Flaccus situation... SHE CANNOT MARRY ANYONE BUT HIM! He is the most gentle, sweet natured and loving man in the books, and Flavia deserves to be loved by a TRUE love - not one of physical appearences only!

    I think Lupus should find someone, and Nubia should marry Aristo.

    Lots of love,

    Emma (the poet) xxx

  65. OMG i just ordered it off of amazon and I'm trying to cram in the whole series before it arrives!!! If it isn't Floppy I might just die!! Too many of my fave book series have ended in dissappointing ways! I have faith in these though, because they always seem to go in a way that may not be EXACTLY what I want, but is generally pleasing! The Sirens of Surrentum is one of my faves!!

  66. katiedid<310:52 PM

    OMG!!!!!!! I should be going to the book store tonight but it's just too hard to wait!!!!!!!
    I NNNEEEEEEEEEED flavia to marry flaccus.. I cried in the prophet from Ephesus when prudentila --or whatever that losers name is-- was SO mean and stuck up to flavia :(
    I hope it's not much longer till I can get my hands on it...

  67. KatiedidIt you must get the book right now! Run don't walk! Unless you live in the US, in which case you have to wait two or three weeks... Sorry!

  68. frenchie11:24 AM

    salve caroline
    I want to read the man from pomegranete street but which book store do you buy it from.plz tell because i have waited for ages and finally got £100 for my birthday and I WANT TO BUY THAT BOOK NOW!!!
    vale frenchie

  69. Salve, Frenchie! You can buy it in any good UK bookstore. If they don't have it they are BAD. In that case, order it online at

    I hope you like it! :-)

  70. frenchie4:40 PM

    salve caroline
    thankyou ever so much for creating the roman mysteries!!! i got the final book at waterstones for £10.00 and i thought it was worth every penny i paid. I loved the ending it was so romantic and it was just spectacular....i am speechless. caroline... you are a GENIUS!!!!!!

  71. Monica.2:11 PM

    woah... Mom's gonna order the last book. ^_^V I'm so happy :D Flavia and Tranquilluis all the way :))) it seems as though he still loves her, and vice-versa but still, Flavia is so stuck with Floppy :^(

  72. Anonymous8:56 AM

    hmmm all right I'm in Australia and all I can say is that I'm realllyyy dissapointed, NONE of the books are out any where! it's HORRIBLE! And I have to say thank-you soo much for writing the Roman Mysteries! Flavia and Floopy all the way!!

  73. The book has been out for a while in Australia. If your local bookstore doesn't have a copy ask them to order it. It won't cost you an extra penny! Good luck!

  74. Anonymous9:18 AM

    Whats the name of the book????? :|

  75. Esther8:28 PM

    i found these books in my school library and i love them. it said on wikipedia (yes, its a totally unreliable source :)) that you were going to write 'the flavian trilogy' but you never published it. is this true??

    1. I'm still working on the Flavian Trilogy. I DO hope to publish it one day but no definite date as yet! Thanks for the nice things you said! :-)

    2. Esther8:38 PM

      ok thank you!!

  76. Hasini8:21 AM

    would the Flavian Trilogy have Flavia, Nubia, Lupus and Jonathan?? omggoshhhh would it mention Flavia's little Roman children?? that would be adorableeeeeee

    1. Yes, that would be fun, wouldn't it? :-)

  77. Anonymous6:53 PM

    I adore your books Caroline!!!
    I have just read 'The Man from Pomegranate Street'!
    Its amazing, I have read all your books and my favorite one is the Sirens of Surrentum.
    You are my favorite author EVER!!!!!!!!!
    Loads of love

    P.s Yes, that is my name.