Relationships Between the Light in the Empire Novels

The Light in the Empire Series follows the interconnected lives of several Roman families during the reigns of Trajan and Hadrian. Join them as they travel the Empire, from Germania and Britannia to Thracia, Dacia, Judaea, North Africa, and, of course, to Rome itself.

Although each can be read stand-alone, here are some groupings you might enjoy based on the appearance of some characters in more than one story. If (title), someone in that family is important but not seen.
Drusus family: The Legacy, True Freedom, Second Chances, Forgiven, (More Than Honor)
Lentulus family: Blind Ambition, Faithful
Crassus family: Blind Ambition, Faithful, Honor Bound
Sabinus family: The Legacy, Honor Bound, More Than Honor, What Matters Most
Titianus family: True Freedom, More Than Honor, What Matters Most, Truth and Honor
Glabrio family: What Matters Most, Truth and Honor
Martinus family: Truth and Honor, Crushed Hopes and Hopeful Beginnings
Brutus family: Faithful, True Freedom, Honor Bound
The Dacians: Hope Unchained, Hope’s Reward, True Freedom

You can start the series with any of the novels because they truly can be read independently. But since they share some characters, you might find it a richer experience if you’ve spent time with the characters in more than one story. Here are some lists that will let you see some of the relationships between the novels. You can download a printable pdf of this information.

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The theme of all the novels: Remaining faithful to Jesus, even when that might cost everything, can change the world for those around us, even for people who might start out as our enemies.

The series tagline: Dangerous times, difficult friendships, lives transformed by forgiveness and love.

Timeline of novels

Year (AD) Title Location
106 Hope Unchained Romania to Serbian coast and back
106 Hope’s Reward Italy, Romania, Serbia, Albania, Greece
114 Blind Ambition Germany to Rome and back
114 The Legacy Rome to Greece to Turkey
118 True Freedom Rome and surrounding parts of Italy
122 Forgiven Israel (Galilee)
122 Second Chances Rome to Greece to Turkey
122 Faithful Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and Rome
122-3 Honor Bound Rome, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany
126 More Than Honor Rome
126 Crushed Hopes and Hopeful Beginnings Roman Egypt and Carthage in North Africa
127 What Matters Most Rome
128 Truth and Honor Rome and Carthage in North Africa

The family relationships of the characters in the stories (listed chronologically)

Drusus family
Blind Ambition
The Legacy
True Freedom
Forgiven
Second Chances

Lentulus Family
Blind Ambition
Faithful

Crassus family
Blind Ambition
Faithful
Honor Bound

Aristarchus of Thessalonica family and friends
Hope’s Reward
The Legacy
Second Chances

Diegis/Leander, Ariana, and Ursus from Dacia
Hope Unchained
Hope’s Reward
True Freedom

Brutus family
True Freedom
Faithful
Honor Bound

Gracchus family
Hope Unchained
Hope’s Reward

Sabinus family
The Legacy
True Freedom
Honor Bound
More Than Honor
What Matters Most

Titianus family
True Freedom
More Than Honor
What Matters Most
Truth and Honor

Glabrio family
What Matters Most
Truth and Honor

Martinus family
Truth and Honor
Crushed Hopes and Hopeful Beginnings

Stories Where Publius’s Letter from The Legacy is Important
The Legacy
More Than Honor
What Matters Most

If you’d like to know about future novels. special offers, and behind-the-scenes info on the writing journey, please sign up for my newsletter.

Fact and Fiction by Carol Ashby