Legacy - Grapes of Rome by Remmy Meggs (book 1). An evocative story of preteen boys who grow up in a rural society thriving for safety and peace. It puts a new perspective on the way early society lived. When the early kingdoms failed, they were fighting for the beginnings of the first Roman Republic.The young boys are forced to enter into warfare with neighboring Etruscans and Iberians to earn the way of life they want. Dante, the main character is forced to take lives of his enemies.
At that time the soldiers of the legions were made up of boys aged 10 upwards with 14-year-olds becoming the centurions and tribunes. Dante was from an aristocratic family supported by slaves, his father whom he loved very much was a general of the army and a senator in primitive Rome. Following the loss of a friend and his slaves, Dante goes on the offensive and becomes a soldier and tribune to be reckoned with. He wins some decisive victories and overcomes betrayal that cost him more friends. I read this exciting story twice already and I cannot wait for book 2. I highly recommend it for 12 years upwards.