Featured Work

Dead Romans

by David Cord

The Shepherd’s Story…
Daphnis knows he is the best shepherd in his beloved countryside, even if he is only a little slave boy. But when he fails to meet the demands of his cruel master Pericles, his sister is sold into a life of depravity. Distraught, Daphnis escapes to Ephesus in search of her but finds someone else who might aid him: Panthea, the Roman emperor’s mistress.

The Mistress’ Story…
Despised by the rich and powerful as nothing more than the emperor’s low-born plaything, beautiful Panthea has endured a lifetime of abuse and manipulation. The emperor’s wife threatens her. A brutal businessman blackmails her. Panthea finds relief from her hellish existence only through the pastoral poetry written for her by the baker Aristides.

The Writer’s Story…
Although Aristides’ poetry has charmed the emperor’s mistress, what he truly desires is to acquire a literary patron and become a successful writer. His chance comes when he is asked to write a glowing biography for the businessman Pericles. But as Aristides discovers the dark truth about his patron, his conscience torments him. Aristides hesitates to write such lies, but the dream of fame beckons. Besides, what is a little slave boy or the emperor’s mistress to him, anyway?

A city under siege…
As the social fabric of Ephesus frays under the onslaught of a remorseless killer, their lives hang in the balance. Love and honor will be tried in one final, anguished crucible. One woman may hold the key to all their salvation: the ship that will be the last to flee the dying city.


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About David :

David J. Cord spent fifteen years in the investment industry, as salesman, administrator and hedge fund manager. He has been a contributor to the Helsinki Times newspaper since its foundation, reporting on business and authoring its most popular column, which includes an eclectic mix of investment tips, angry policy recommendations and laconic observations about the economy. He has also written for publishers as diverse as European CEO and the Finnish Foreign Ministry.

His first book, Mohamed 2.0: Disruption Manifesto, was published in 2012. Called ‘simply brilliant’ by Finland’s largest business newspaper Kaupalehti, it tells the story of Mohamed El-Fatatry and the rise and fall of the online social network Muxlim.

Dead Romans is his upcoming second book. The shepherd slave boy Daphnis struggles to keep his family together under the ownership of a cruel master. The emperor’s mistress Panthea doubts her self-worth due to an abusive relationship with her father. The writer Aristides must decide if he should sacrifice his integrity to get a literary patron. In the midst of their personal catastrophes, the plague sweeps through the Roman Empire. The three must face their mortality and what is really important in life.

David is already working on his third book.

An American by birth, David married a Finn and moved to Finland in 2005. He lives in Helsinki with his beautiful wife Niina and his globe-trotting dog Orion.