This book by M. Yourcenar was a big disappointment for me, especially after Vidal's "Julian".
Hadrian was Roman Emperor in the first half of 2nd century when Roman empire reached its zenith and its greatest stability.
In this book M. Yourcenar provided fictional account of Hadrian's life, written as a memoirs in first person. It covers period from the accession of Hadrian's adoptive father, Emperor Trajan, Hadrian's himself and up to accession of Hadrian's adoptive son, Emperor Antoninus Pius.
It was during the reign of Hadrian that final Jewish rebellion took place that ended up with final destruction of Jerusalem and renaming of Judea/Israel territories into Palestine.
In general beyond Jewish revolt and few pages about Trajan's Dacian and Parthian wars, book contained very little if any specific discussions about Roman empire.
posted by David Usharauli