Required Reading: Katie Parla's Rome Reading List

Katie Parla, author, guide, and American expat living in Rome, shares her favorite books—historical tomes, personal memoirs, ancient compilations, info-packed insider guides, and more—that best capture the essence of Italy’s ancient capital.

Liveright & Company
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“SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome” by Mary Beard

“British historian and celebrated classicist Mary Beard is an engaging writer on any subject, but her 2015 book, named for the ancient Latin phrase “Senatus Populusque Romanus” ("The Senate and People of Rome") is Beard's best. Whether recounting conspiracies or detailing the lives of former slaves, the text is lively and transports the reader to the ancient city.” $11; amazon.com.