Amara was once a beloved daughter, until her father's death plunged her family into penury. Now she is a slave in Pompeii's infamous brothel, owned by a man she despises. Sharp, clever and resourceful, Amara is forced to hide her talents. For as a she-wolf, her only value lies in the desire she can stir in others.
But Amara's spirit is far from broken.
By day, she walks the streets with her fellow she-wolves, finding comfort in the laughter and dreams they share. For the streets of Pompeii are alive with opportunity. Out here, even the lowest slave can secure a reversal in fortune. Amara has learnt that everything in this city has its price. But how much is her freedom going to cost her?
Set in Pompeii's lupanar, The Wolf Den reimagines the lives of women who have long been overlooked.
This was book 5 of my 20 Books of Summer 2021.
Who knew a book about a group of enslaved prostitutes in Pompeii would be so utterly captivating?! This is a book that shows the darker side of life in Pompeii, the ill treatment of women, the brutality, the fears, the sleazy characters, and more importantly, the women who find themselves working in the brothel and their backstories and how they become a little family to help them get through each day in a world that is extremely unfair.
At the heart of the group is Amara, who has ended up at the brothel despite a positive start in life. But in her she has a fight and spirit that seems to infect some of the others, as they deal with the horror of their days by supporting one another, using humour as a tool to deflect the bad and just being there for one another and looking out for each other.
You really do empathise with the despair of these girls - there is no way out, and what they have to put up with from their boss or clients just makes you sick to the stomach. They are commodities and there is no compassion for them as human beings whatsoever. But they share a bond as women and that is what gets them through each day, despite the jealousies that can sometimes bubble up.
The author has done a wonderful job of transporting you back in time - you can almost hear the noise on the streets and the smells in the air. A wonderful piece of historical fiction and I really cannot wait to see what Elodie comes up with next!!