Lest Darkness Fall by L. Sprague de Camp

To Bring the Light by David Drake

Baen Books

Reviews by Matthew Urick

Lest Darkness Fall is an acknowledged classic of science fiction and I need not recommend it to those who know of its reputation. If you were not aware of it, then now is a chance to discover it. Alternate history stories are all the rage and here's one of the best.

Martin Padway is in transit to an archaeological dig in Lebanon when lightning hits him in Rome. He finds he has "slipped" back to sixth century Rome. What follows is the story of how he survives, prospers, and changes history - for he realizes that to have any chance at a stable life he has to stop the fall of the Roman Empire. Not only is this a highly enjoyable lesson on historical engineering, but, like all of de Camp's early fiction, it is peopled with characters as real as the ones you know today.

To Bring the Light is an original story of a woman living during the height of the Roman Empire who "slips" to the time of Romulus and Remus. It is presented as a counterpoint to Darkness, but you will forget it in a week while Darkness will remain with you for a long time.

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