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A heavily weathered bronze statue of a Julius Caesar, a Roman Emperor, holding a scroll, situated near Trajan's Forum on Via dei Fori Imperiali in central Rome. (

The Knives Come Out: Three Books About Betrayal

by Myla Goldberg
Mar 12, 2012 (All Things Considered)

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"Et Tu, Brute?"

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I was in Mrs. Farrell's English class when I first saw the daggers come out. Casca led them, Brutus finished the job, and then there was Julius, a bloody wreck on the floor of the Roman Senate. Not a March 15 passes that I don't hear a faint whisper in the back of my head — Beware the Ides of March — and I've been hooked on stories of betrayal ever since.

Reading about it offers a vicarious thrill — like peering over a ledge when there's no danger of falling — but it also serves as preparation for those inevitable times when our friends, our families, our politicians or our world let us down. And so here, for fun or for practice, are three excellent books on the subject.

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