A very good book for any aspiring student of Roman warfare.
The explanations of Rome’s military structure are laid out very clearly. A lot of the battles are described in good detail and many were accompanied by diagrams.
Goldsworthy describes the reasons for defeat and victory and he is exceptional when explaining the reasons for the change in the military of Rome during the Late Republic. The author goes into depth (although not too much) about many of the military leaders more so than a general book on Roman history. He clearly describes the consequences of certain battles and defeats as well as achievements accomplished, and one thing I really liked about the book was that the author goes on to explain the leadership and militaries of the non-Romans (the reader receives a good introduction on Germanic and Celtic tribes).
One negative thing about the book (something that gets on my nerves) is that it is not cited well. The chapter notes only provide primary sources and rarely does the author mention any secondary sources. All he uses are phrases like “many” or “some” scholars. He does present various sides of issues, but I wish he would reference these scholars more thoroughly. Other than that, this is a very good book for a student or anyone interested in Roman warfare, imperialism, attitudes, and conquest. It is detailed, but not too much for a beginner student to understand. It is helpful for the reader to have at least a basic knowledge of Roman culture and politics, but it is not necessary.