Spartacus the Gladiator is a gritty retelling of the ancient legend, and the first in a new series by Ben Kane. Spartacus is a tactical genius and a leader of men, yet he is captured and sold to a gladiator school in Capua. While there, he befriends Crixus the Gaul – and together they plan on overthrowing their Roman masters. This is not your noble, family-friendly, Kirk Douglas version of Spartacus. It is closer to Starz’s Spartacus: Blood and Sand. Battle scenes, treachery, strong language, and violence abound. If this book were a movie, there would be blood splattered on the camera constantly…which means that it is a mega page-turner.