Amazon… 4 of 5 stars / 170+ reviews

Rubies of the Viper cover

Goodreads… 3.5 of 5 stars / 250+ reviews

“If I were to select a book of the year to read, RUBIES OF THE VIPER would be in the running for top choice. Yes, it is that good.” —Rhonda Esakov for Story Circle Book Reviews

“I ordered this book after seeing all the five star reviews. Now I see they are well deserved. Impossible to put this book down. I HIGHLY recommend this book.” —Patricia Goodspeed, Amazon Vine Voice

“If you love historical fiction that will grab you by the jugular and not let go until you’ve devoured the last page, this novel is for you. A remarkable work!” —Cheri Lasota, author of Artemis Rising and Echoes in the Glass

“A fast-paced, suspenseful and romantic historical novel and a totally satisfying read.” —M. Louisa Locke, author of the Victorian San Francisco Mystery Series

“The characters in RUBIES OF THE VIPER achieve the rare status of being ‘real.’ Highly recommended.” —Rebecca Lochlann, author of The Year-God’s Daughter and The Thinara King.




AD 53—Strong-willed, impetuous, and naive, Theodosia Varro inherits the family estate after her brother is murdered on the streets of Rome. With no preparation, she goes from poverty and isolation to great wealth and a prestigious position in society.

Only by identifying her brother’s killer can she feel safe, yet her efforts take her in quite the opposite direction. After her own actions and the scheming of others lead to catastrophe, Theodosia struggles to survive and recover what matters most in her life.


RUBIES OF THE VIPER is a genuine gem of a mystery set in Rome during the reigns of the Emperors Claudius and Nero. It’s full of exciting suspense and beautifully developed characters. Marks’s rich portrayal of Roman life is delightful and gruesome in turns–just as a good Roman mystery ought to be. We get the grace, the violence and the perversion that was imperial society revealed through a spell-binding tale.” —Judith Starkston, author of Hand of Fire

“A real page turner—a book that stays in your thoughts the entire day until you can read again. Compelling characters, beautiful descriptions, plenty of conflict with unpredictable twists and turns, and an incredible storyline.” —Mirella Sichirollo Patzer, author of Orphan of the Olive Tree and The Prophetic Queen.”