I listened to this audiobook because it was recommended at the end of The Swerve and I've been interested in Roman history for some time, without having any real targets for my ambition to learn more. This book ably served my purpose, both providing an excellent background on Roman history during the height of the Empire, and focusing on the individual quirks of one man. The sources that Everitt pulls from -- fragments, poetry, inscriptions, architecture -- are fascinating in themselves. The portrait of Hadrian that emerges is one of a capable man who was determined to solidify, rather than expand, the empire (hence Hadrian's Wall), but who personally was a kind of talented amateur who delighted in facing off against experts. Although he wasn't the most sympathetic character, I found that by the end I quite liked him.