Probably the best Historical narrative I've read is a book called "Rubicon" by Tom Holland. It's really captivating and gets you really interested in the late Roman republic.
How much of it is truth I don't know, it makes you feel like both the senate and the people realised and were upset that Octavian was going to take their 'freedom'. To me all this stuff about the people being free under the republic sounds like Cicero's propaganda. Octavian tried to make it seem like the people were as free as ever, and when Cicero was removed from the equation that was easy. This is where we get the idea that Antony wanted to be a world dictator, Octavian and Cicero would make it seem like this, thus Octavian won the support of Cicero and the republicans.