Augustus: The Golden Age of Rome, by G.P. Baker, paperback (good condition)
Another in a series of superb biographies of ancient leaders, G. P. Baker tackles the life and times of Gaius Octavius Augustus (63 B.C.-14 A.D.), first emperor of Rome and founder of a Roman state that endured for centuries. Physically weak and plagued by ill health, he was only eighteen years old when Julius Caesar's assassination thrust him, as his uncle's chief heir and adopted son, into the forefront of the subsequent political and military turmoil. This book details his ruthless path to power, in which he outmaneuvered and outfought such rivals as Cassius, Brutus, Lepidus, Mark Anthony, and Cleopatra. Augustus embodied and represented the tremendous currents that transformed Rome from a small Italian city situated on the Tiber River to a powerful empire that bestrode the known world as no other colossus ever had. Augustus was astute and artful enough to balance republican traditions with imperial realities, skillfully maintaining the delicate façade to achieve his goals, so that, late in life, he could rightfully claim, "I left Rome a city of marble, though I found it a city of bricks."