What book is best overview of the Roman Empire? I would like something covers the whole of the rise and fall of the Roman Empire in a single volume under 1000 pages.
I realise that there is more to Roman history than just the time Rome was an empire.
I know you specified one book, and are probably looking for a history.
Then go for the source, Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. I know that he’s not current, there’s a lot of things he got wrong, but it was an entertaining read.
Or for something different, read Colleen McCollough’s “Masters of Rome” series of novels. It only covers the late republican era, but would give you are really good feel for the era.