web site hit counter The Romanov Bride - Ebooks PDF Online
Hot Best Seller

The Romanov Bride

Availability: Ready to download

As the Russia of Nicholas and Aleksandra rushes full speed toward catastrophe, The Romanov Bride follows the lives of two revolutionary souls, that of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta (or Ella), sister of the tsaritsa Aleksandra, and that of Pavel, a simple village man yearning for more. The life of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta begins like a fairy tale - born a princess of Germany, she As the Russia of Nicholas and Aleksandra rushes full speed toward catastrophe, The Romanov Bride follows the lives of two revolutionary souls, that of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta (or Ella), sister of the tsaritsa Aleksandra, and that of Pavel, a simple village man yearning for more. The life of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta begins like a fairy tale - born a princess of Germany, she marries the Grand Duke Sergei of Russia and enters the most lavish and magnificent court in the world, that of the mighty Romanovs, where she is renowned for her sumptuous fashion, jewels, and beauty, not to mention her kind heart. Her husband, however, possesses no such grace, and he rules Moscow as he does his wife, with a cold, hard fist. For Pavel and his bride, though, living in Sankt Peterburg means sharing a crowded cellar with other families, and being barely able to afford bread. Nevertheless, they are full of optimism, for their grandparents were serfs and this young couple is the first to leave the countryside to seek a better existence. However, after an explosive confrontation between peaceful demonstrators and tsarist soldiers, the lives of Ella and Pavel take two very different turns, but the fire of revolutionary Russia eventually links their fates forever. Robert Alexander once again masterfully combines the power of true history and riveting storytelling to bring this fascinating and legendary period to life.


Compare

As the Russia of Nicholas and Aleksandra rushes full speed toward catastrophe, The Romanov Bride follows the lives of two revolutionary souls, that of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta (or Ella), sister of the tsaritsa Aleksandra, and that of Pavel, a simple village man yearning for more. The life of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta begins like a fairy tale - born a princess of Germany, she As the Russia of Nicholas and Aleksandra rushes full speed toward catastrophe, The Romanov Bride follows the lives of two revolutionary souls, that of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta (or Ella), sister of the tsaritsa Aleksandra, and that of Pavel, a simple village man yearning for more. The life of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta begins like a fairy tale - born a princess of Germany, she marries the Grand Duke Sergei of Russia and enters the most lavish and magnificent court in the world, that of the mighty Romanovs, where she is renowned for her sumptuous fashion, jewels, and beauty, not to mention her kind heart. Her husband, however, possesses no such grace, and he rules Moscow as he does his wife, with a cold, hard fist. For Pavel and his bride, though, living in Sankt Peterburg means sharing a crowded cellar with other families, and being barely able to afford bread. Nevertheless, they are full of optimism, for their grandparents were serfs and this young couple is the first to leave the countryside to seek a better existence. However, after an explosive confrontation between peaceful demonstrators and tsarist soldiers, the lives of Ella and Pavel take two very different turns, but the fire of revolutionary Russia eventually links their fates forever. Robert Alexander once again masterfully combines the power of true history and riveting storytelling to bring this fascinating and legendary period to life.

30 review for The Romanov Bride

  1. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    I invoked the Rule of 50, and therefore only read the first 53 pages. It was really all I could stomach. This man writes like a fourth-grader--he clearly has no understanding of the way people talk, or if he does, his idea of how people spoke at the turn of the century is just laughable. It's very stilted and contrived dialogue. I can't tell if he had a good story on his hands or not, because I was too distracted by the awful dialogue and the unnecessary descriptions of people's clothing. It's re I invoked the Rule of 50, and therefore only read the first 53 pages. It was really all I could stomach. This man writes like a fourth-grader--he clearly has no understanding of the way people talk, or if he does, his idea of how people spoke at the turn of the century is just laughable. It's very stilted and contrived dialogue. I can't tell if he had a good story on his hands or not, because I was too distracted by the awful dialogue and the unnecessary descriptions of people's clothing. It's really, really odd that he spends so much time describing trivial things or moments and then bolts past moments that are actually important to the story. For example, why weren't we shown Pavel's meetings with the terrorists plotting Grand Duke Sergei's murder? That would've actually been interesting! Also, he clearly has no idea how women think of themselves. We don't say to ourselves 'I think I shall push my fair hair from my eyes, dab at my tears with my embroidered handkerchief and straighten my puffy pink afternoon gown, embroidered with small diamonds in the shape of orchid leaves!' Also, women don't cry nearly as often as he seems to think they do (which is, apparently, every five minutes). Maybe it's just how he chose to tell the story--in small first-person chunks, as though Pavel and Grand Duchess Ella are trading stories back and forth--because something clearly was not working. Maybe if he'd tried third-person, and actually showed these scenes taking place, it might have worked better. As it is, this is a rushed mess, with unbelievable caricatures of human beings swapping lines they hope sound Shakespearean and describing everything about themselves even though no one cares. I am completely serious when I say it reads like a fourth-grader wrote it. It seems like a youngster's first try at a novel, and if that's what it is, Robert Alexander should've left it in his box of keepsakes or else rewritten it before inflicting it on an unsuspecting public.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    This is the third book from Robert Alexander, and like the two previous books, it is set during the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. This book follows the paths of two victims of tragedy; Pavel, the worker turned revolutionary assassin, and Ella, sister to the Empress Alexandra and Romanov princess. Alexander explores the two very different paths taken. For Pavel, the murder of his wife and unborn child leads him to revenge and hatred. At many times, he seems to be acting purely through the dir This is the third book from Robert Alexander, and like the two previous books, it is set during the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. This book follows the paths of two victims of tragedy; Pavel, the worker turned revolutionary assassin, and Ella, sister to the Empress Alexandra and Romanov princess. Alexander explores the two very different paths taken. For Pavel, the murder of his wife and unborn child leads him to revenge and hatred. At many times, he seems to be acting purely through the direction and orders of others--perhaps that way he doesn't need to explore his conscience. He is almost machine-like in the way that he carries out his duties, but unlike a machine there is a deep rage and hatred the fuels his gruesome actions. Ella, whose husband is assassinated, doesn't rage against those who killed him--instead she follows a path of love. She truly believes that the Russian people are like good children--obedient and loving but easily led by their emotions and ugly rumors. She makes it her life's mission to reduce the suffering of her adopted homeland and becomes a nun. Her duty is to all the wounded, suffering, dying, and orphaned--and their welfare influences her decisions. In many ways, this book was depressing. Virtually every reader knows enough Russian history to know that the revolutionaries do overthrow the government, so reading sections where things could have gone differently or how the revolution resorted to blatant lies and manipulation to destroy the government (and the lives of so many innocents), was very difficult. However, it is a book that provides much to think about/reflect on. The Russian Revolution is one of the critical eras that the world should not forget--this particular history need not repeat itself. This book made the suffering of the common people very real for me, and I sympathized with the starving, confused, and hurting masses.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Lee Williams

    What I love about Robert Alexander is the fantastic historical detail he includes in his novels. I love that he uses the diaries and letters of his characters so that he can use their actual words and language in his novels. I also love that he presents such a tumultous time in history in such an even handed way. He doesn't portray the Tsar and other Royals as perfectly evil or perfectly innocent. Neither does he portray the revolutionary activists as perfectly innocent or perfectly evil. He rea What I love about Robert Alexander is the fantastic historical detail he includes in his novels. I love that he uses the diaries and letters of his characters so that he can use their actual words and language in his novels. I also love that he presents such a tumultous time in history in such an even handed way. He doesn't portray the Tsar and other Royals as perfectly evil or perfectly innocent. Neither does he portray the revolutionary activists as perfectly innocent or perfectly evil. He really shows the good and bad of each side....and shows just how tragic it all was. This book is yet another excellent offering from Robert Alexander.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Alexandra Alexyna

    a book with and about the Russian revolution from the perspective of Ella and Pavel. a book with potential that makes you want to do more research on the subject (so I found out that the Kremlin is a fortress and exists in several cities) but far too long on the subject. The descriptions take you with the eyes of the mind to Russia and have an ironic tint (God is the ruler of the world and the Tsar is the ruler of Russia)

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mimi

    I was reminded of Nancy Pearl's "character, plot, writing, or setting" theory a lot during this reading. While I really didn't love the writing style and rolled my eyes several times, I thought that the way that Alexander brought Ella to life pulled the narrative into a fascinating historical fiction that brought to the forefront history, the foment of the Revolution, and Ella's ever deepening faith. So, clearly I'm a character reader. I was reminded of Nancy Pearl's "character, plot, writing, or setting" theory a lot during this reading. While I really didn't love the writing style and rolled my eyes several times, I thought that the way that Alexander brought Ella to life pulled the narrative into a fascinating historical fiction that brought to the forefront history, the foment of the Revolution, and Ella's ever deepening faith. So, clearly I'm a character reader.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    If I hadn't been sitting in an airport with nothing to do, I wouldn't have bothered finishing this. It would be okay for someone who hasn't read tons and tons about European monarchy and the Russian revolution. It wasn't historically inaccurate, just intellectually scaled down for a precocious fifth grader. If I hadn't been sitting in an airport with nothing to do, I wouldn't have bothered finishing this. It would be okay for someone who hasn't read tons and tons about European monarchy and the Russian revolution. It wasn't historically inaccurate, just intellectually scaled down for a precocious fifth grader.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    As much as I loved The Kitchen Boy, I have to say I mostly endured The Romanov Bride. I have read many stories of the more famous Romanovs — Nicholas, Alexandra and their children — but had only heard of this older sister of the Empress as a passing mention in some of the other books. So I was intrigued by the chance to read a story focused on the lesser-known sister. Perhaps if the book had focused solely on "Ella" (as the heading of her chapters dubbed her), it would have been a better story. As much as I loved The Kitchen Boy, I have to say I mostly endured The Romanov Bride. I have read many stories of the more famous Romanovs — Nicholas, Alexandra and their children — but had only heard of this older sister of the Empress as a passing mention in some of the other books. So I was intrigued by the chance to read a story focused on the lesser-known sister. Perhaps if the book had focused solely on "Ella" (as the heading of her chapters dubbed her), it would have been a better story. I did at least enjoy some of those chapters, although the style felt too simple. (On the other hand, that helped enhance the pace of the pushing-through-to-the-end. Yes, I am one of those readers who almost never leaves a book unfinished...unless it is just morally offensive, and I tend to filter those out fairly accurately before I ever bring them home. But I digress.) The chapters devoted to Pavel were largely uninteresting and completely predictable. Granted, he was of an uneducated and obviously lower class than the Grand Duchess, but the writing felt like that which I was reading in upper elementary school -- and the potty "humor" written for the revolutionaries felt grade school as well. Other than the few occasions where the two main characters crossed each other's path, Pavel's chapters added nothing of consequence to the story. I was therefore not overly surprised to read the author's note at the end that indicates many of the diaries and letters of the Grand Duchess were used in sharing her actual words and inner thoughts for the book. She simply came off the page, for the most part, as a more fully-formed individual. It has been at least a few years (and many, many books) since I read The Kitchen Boy, so I don't claim to remember my thoughts on it unerringly... but I do not remember feeling irritated by a simplistic and uninspired writing style. And I do remember quite clearly being kept guessing — and being surprised — by its ending. With The Romanov Bride, I was simply glad to see the ending. This book will NOT be finding a home on my bookshelf. It will go from the "to be read" pile right back to my local used book store. (Thank goodness I did not pay retail for this one.)

  8. 5 out of 5

    Robert Alexander

    I loved working on this book and I hope it shows. I'll be talking about it on my live webcasts: http://www.sitestories.com/theromanov... I loved working on this book and I hope it shows. I'll be talking about it on my live webcasts: http://www.sitestories.com/theromanov...

  9. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    This book was pretty good. I didn’t hate it, I didn’t love it. It held my interest enough that I finished the audiobook fairly quickly. I liked that I learned a lot about a time period that has always interested me but I didn’t know that much about. It was basically about the time that led up to the killing of Anastasia and her family. What led up to the revolution. It focused on a revolutionary and the sister of the czarista. I liked the two points of view. I was able to understand both views. This book was pretty good. I didn’t hate it, I didn’t love it. It held my interest enough that I finished the audiobook fairly quickly. I liked that I learned a lot about a time period that has always interested me but I didn’t know that much about. It was basically about the time that led up to the killing of Anastasia and her family. What led up to the revolution. It focused on a revolutionary and the sister of the czarista. I liked the two points of view. I was able to understand both views. Although I didn’t support the actions of the extremist revolutionaries I obviously understand why they’d want to revolt. The monarchy side of it is hard. They live based on traditions that had been around for hundreds maybe even thousands of years. And from this book it seems like at least Ella was trying to be a decent person through it all no matter what she did or felt needed to be done. At least she wasn’t supporting murder. I don’t know HOW accurate these events were. (I read reviews that other books by this author weren’t entirely accurate and were biased) I’m hoping it’s mostly accurate as far as the major events anyway. I felt like I learned a lot and I’m hoping it wasn’t made up.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Hope

    What an AMAZING book! I so enjoyed reading this and tried to devour it in one sitting but sleep claimed me before I finished. ;-) After chores, a walk and breakfast I finished it, sobbing into the pillow held tightly to my chest as I read the last 2 chapters! Poignant, touching, heartbreaking, yet gloriously uplifting.... so many emotions! This is seriously an amazingly wonderful book! I look forward to reading the other books by this same author. :-)

  11. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    In all the reading about the Romanovs I have done over the years, Alexandra's older sister "Ella" was what I thought a fascinating character, but always somewhere in the background. I was delighted to learn there is a novel focusing on her. Inititally I was disappointed to find the narrative alternating between Ella & the fictional young revolutionary Pavel. Later I found it interesting to view some events of the Russian Revolution thru the eyes of both the Romanovs & the working class. In all the reading about the Romanovs I have done over the years, Alexandra's older sister "Ella" was what I thought a fascinating character, but always somewhere in the background. I was delighted to learn there is a novel focusing on her. Inititally I was disappointed to find the narrative alternating between Ella & the fictional young revolutionary Pavel. Later I found it interesting to view some events of the Russian Revolution thru the eyes of both the Romanovs & the working class.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    It was very slow. The writing was too much, there was plenty that wasn't necessary. It did however make me Google some things about the Russian revolution that were interesting. It was very slow. The writing was too much, there was plenty that wasn't necessary. It did however make me Google some things about the Russian revolution that were interesting.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ladyslott

    Book No: 7 The fall of the Romanov’s has provided endless fascination among both authors and readers for many years. In this book Robert Alexander takes a look at one of the lesser-known Romanov’s, Elizabeth, sister to the Czarina and wife of Grand Duke Serge of Russia. While the life of this princess is indeed interesting, the execution is not as interesting as I had hoped. I had heard good things about this author so I was looking forward to this book, but I was very disappointed. First the titl Book No: 7 The fall of the Romanov’s has provided endless fascination among both authors and readers for many years. In this book Robert Alexander takes a look at one of the lesser-known Romanov’s, Elizabeth, sister to the Czarina and wife of Grand Duke Serge of Russia. While the life of this princess is indeed interesting, the execution is not as interesting as I had hoped. I had heard good things about this author so I was looking forward to this book, but I was very disappointed. First the title is a bit misleading, since the story of Ella and Serge’s marriage is barely mentioned before it is twenty years later, so she is not exactly a ‘bride’ anymore. Very little of either of the two’s lives are explored and the story loses something in understanding the character of Ella. Why did they marry? What was Ella’s relationship to Nicolas and her sister Alexandra like before they assumed power? It is glossed over that Serge was possibly homosexual and likely an abusive husband, but a lot of what would have made this story interesting is barely touched upon. The second problem was the alternating stories of Ella and Pavel, a young Russian man who becomes a revolutionary. This is an entirely fictional character and most of his dialogue and musings seem like a step-by-step guide to revolution and most of his ideas read like a propaganda manual. The fact that he was involved in so many aspects of the assassination of Serge when he was such a minor and low level radical and kept crossing paths with Serge and Ella seemed very far-fetched. I found most of his chapters tiresome to read, and except for one scene I felt no connection to him at all. I found the dialogue flat and the characters rather uninteresting despite the fact that this is a fascinating time in history. The whole book felt like someone standing to the side explaining everything they saw without any real depth or emotion. Despite hearing that Alexander’s other books are better after this book I am far less likely to give them a shot.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Leanna

    Robert Alexander returns again to the Romanovs in his most recent novel, The Romanov Bride. This time, he focuses on the Grand Duchess Elisabeth “Ella” Fyodorovna, the older sister of Tsarina Alexandra, and Pavel, a fictional revolutionary. The book alternates chapters between Ella and Pavel’s perspectives. Ella reacts to the Russian Revolution and the assassination of her husband, the Governor General of Moscow, by retreating from her aristocratic roots and founding an abbey, hospital, and orpha Robert Alexander returns again to the Romanovs in his most recent novel, The Romanov Bride. This time, he focuses on the Grand Duchess Elisabeth “Ella” Fyodorovna, the older sister of Tsarina Alexandra, and Pavel, a fictional revolutionary. The book alternates chapters between Ella and Pavel’s perspectives. Ella reacts to the Russian Revolution and the assassination of her husband, the Governor General of Moscow, by retreating from her aristocratic roots and founding an abbey, hospital, and orphanage. Pavel reacts to the poverty of the peasant and the murder of his wife by becoming a revolutionary and assassinator. Although Ella and Pavel come from different worlds and follow different paths, Alexander presents them both realistically and sympathetically. Ella ultimately devotes herself to charity, yet she spent most of her life surrounded by extreme opulence while the common man rotted in poverty around her. Pavel hopes for a better, more equal Russia yet murders gratuitously to achieve this goal. With Bride, Alexander once again crafts a fascinating historical narrative in the likes of The Kitchen Boy and Rasputin’s Daughter. In this case, though, he remains more faithful to the historical record and avoids the surprise endings of his previous novels. I was disappointed by Alexander’s manipulation of truth in these novels, but in this case, I hoped for a happy ending that simply does not exist. I am continually intrigued by the tragic nature of Russian history. Millions have suffered—or inflicted suffering—whether governed by tsar or dictator. Considering the current political situation, I can’t help but wonder how much has really changed.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    My perfect idea of a vacation is what I have experienced so far over the last three days: a beautiful beach, good food, and unlimited historical fiction. The Romanov Bride is not the best piece of literature I have ever read, but it was an absorbing easy beach read. I had never heard of The Grand Duchess Elisavyeta who was the sister of doomed Tsarina of Russia at the time of the Revolution and was married to the Tsar’s uncle, the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich. Her story is so tragic yet gripp My perfect idea of a vacation is what I have experienced so far over the last three days: a beautiful beach, good food, and unlimited historical fiction. The Romanov Bride is not the best piece of literature I have ever read, but it was an absorbing easy beach read. I had never heard of The Grand Duchess Elisavyeta who was the sister of doomed Tsarina of Russia at the time of the Revolution and was married to the Tsar’s uncle, the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich. Her story is so tragic yet gripping. After her husband is blown to bits by revolutionaries in 1905, Ella experiences a religious conversion as she realizes how much the poor were alienated from the aristocracy. Thus she sells everything in her household and begins a new order of monastic women. She petitions the Russian Orthodox Church several times before they allow her to ordain the new order. Russian nuns were usually cloistered and Ella wished to have her sisters serve the impoverished community around them in Moscow, a fairly radical idea at the time. With historical facts like that, how can you not end up with a great story? Especially given we all know what fate lay in store for all the Romanovs, even one who had been a nun for several years by the time of the October Revolution in 1917. Ella was eventually canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church for her work with the poor and sick. If you enjoy learning about extraordinary women in history and/or about the Russian Revolution, I recommend this novel.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chana

    Isn't this a sad book? A sad piece of history, that just keeps getting repeated throughout history, different players, same story. This is the story of the Grand Duchess Elisavyeta, sister of the wife of Tsar Nicholas; and a peasant turned terrorist for the sake of the revolution after his wife is killed on Bloody Sunday. The Grand Duchess was a good person (she has since been made a saint), most of the royals were, they were just born into their place in life as were the peasants. But the peasant Isn't this a sad book? A sad piece of history, that just keeps getting repeated throughout history, different players, same story. This is the story of the Grand Duchess Elisavyeta, sister of the wife of Tsar Nicholas; and a peasant turned terrorist for the sake of the revolution after his wife is killed on Bloody Sunday. The Grand Duchess was a good person (she has since been made a saint), most of the royals were, they were just born into their place in life as were the peasants. But the peasants were like children, greedy and immature, and the royals were somewhat removed and had way too much wealth for their own safety. The peasants had lived under the heel of their masters as serfs for many years. So they were either passive or explosive, not much in between. There were bad people of course but they were mostly those behind the scenes of the revolution, the ones controlling the agitators. And so death and death and more death. I don't know how many terrorists actually repent of their acts in the end. Pavel has his regret and sorrow at the end. "He had thought he would receive satisfaction from his revenge, but all that was delivered unto him was torment. He had thought that he had killed to keep the Revolution rolling forward, so that the sins of their masters would never be repeated, but now he saw that the fury of upheaval was doomed only to repeat itself again and again." It is the history of the world isn't it?

  17. 5 out of 5

    Maria Ana

    I've already read one of Robert Alexander books, the first he published. I loved the fisrt one, but this one had a special touch. His books tell us about the times of the Russian Revolution, which is a very interesting topic. It were times of mystery, war, richness and poverty, wonderfull princesses and the Tsars! As the other book, "The Romanov Bride" also takes place during the proletarian revolution. The reader is able to observe the two diferent factions of this "war" through the Grand Duchess I've already read one of Robert Alexander books, the first he published. I loved the fisrt one, but this one had a special touch. His books tell us about the times of the Russian Revolution, which is a very interesting topic. It were times of mystery, war, richness and poverty, wonderfull princesses and the Tsars! As the other book, "The Romanov Bride" also takes place during the proletarian revolution. The reader is able to observe the two diferent factions of this "war" through the Grand Duchess Isabel and a landsman named Pavel. In my opinion, i thought it was particulary interesting seeing the two different points of view. We see how the russian people were starving, and working like "beasts" in the factories, and we also notice the growing fear of inovation from the Tsars, to take new measures on such an huge empire. Made me sad to see, what was necessary to make this revoltion, the anger, the hate. It's easy to understand why, but in the end of the story, i can't stop questioning myself, how people are capable to kill inocent people, especially Ella, which in fact was an Romanov, but addopted her brithish manners on taking care of the poor and the sick and defended all those russian who hated her so much for nothing, just because of her family, not because of her action.... The Grand Duchess even builted a monestery. Good book, a story full of passion,hate, but full of hope and changes.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    This is the story of the life of Princes Elisavyeta, Grand Duchess in the tsarist Russia. It was helpful that I had read "King Kaiser Tsar" prior to this book. What makes it so fascinating is the relationships that exist between all the characters. Ella (her "English" name is also the sister of the Tsarina Alexandra and both of them were graddaughters of Queen Victoria and hence first cousins of Kaiser Wilhelm!!! Princess Ella lives through the great Russian Revolution that occured during World W This is the story of the life of Princes Elisavyeta, Grand Duchess in the tsarist Russia. It was helpful that I had read "King Kaiser Tsar" prior to this book. What makes it so fascinating is the relationships that exist between all the characters. Ella (her "English" name is also the sister of the Tsarina Alexandra and both of them were graddaughters of Queen Victoria and hence first cousins of Kaiser Wilhelm!!! Princess Ella lives through the great Russian Revolution that occured during World War I. After her husbands death she experiences a tremendous spiritual reawakening and not only becomes a nun but founds her own order!!! Sigh! what a difference it would have made if her bil, the Tsar, had adopted some of her generosity. This is a two part story because intertwined with Ella's tale is that of the Bulshevik revolutionary Pavel! Hence we see both sides of the fight--the poverty and anger of the poor and the wealth and hypocricy of the ruling rich!!! It was a well written book. Maybe Ella comes across as just too good but I can't explain her actions except by the fact that she was just "too good!"

  19. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

    Historical novel based on the real-life Grand Duchess Elisabeth Romanov. She was the older sister of the Tsarina Alexandra and her husband, Sergei Alexandrovich, was the Tsar's cousin. After her husband's death, she became a nun. After the Bolshevik revolution, she, along with other members of the Romanov family, was killed in 1918. The novel is told in alternating viewpoints--Elisabeth or "Ella"--and Pavel, a fictional revolutionary whose life becomes entwined with Elisabeth's. The history of the Historical novel based on the real-life Grand Duchess Elisabeth Romanov. She was the older sister of the Tsarina Alexandra and her husband, Sergei Alexandrovich, was the Tsar's cousin. After her husband's death, she became a nun. After the Bolshevik revolution, she, along with other members of the Romanov family, was killed in 1918. The novel is told in alternating viewpoints--Elisabeth or "Ella"--and Pavel, a fictional revolutionary whose life becomes entwined with Elisabeth's. The history of the Romanovs and the Russian Revolution is fascinating and tragic, and Elisabeth herself is a particularly compelling figure. Unfortunately, the history and personalities are stronger than the writing, which is merely average.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jaret

    This book was not as interesting as it could have been. I didn't mind that the story shifted viewpoints from the Grand Duchess to the poor revolutionist. The contrasting viewpoints were the most interesting part of the book. I think I'm in the minority here, but I preferred Pavel's storyline more. There was more action to his story, where Ella's storyline dragged a lot for me. She spent most of the story whining about her life with the Grand Duke, until she had her "epiphany". Then she became a This book was not as interesting as it could have been. I didn't mind that the story shifted viewpoints from the Grand Duchess to the poor revolutionist. The contrasting viewpoints were the most interesting part of the book. I think I'm in the minority here, but I preferred Pavel's storyline more. There was more action to his story, where Ella's storyline dragged a lot for me. She spent most of the story whining about her life with the Grand Duke, until she had her "epiphany". Then she became a "saint" who didn't want to be called a saint, but really wanted to be a martyr to her cause. The only time I cared about her was when Pavel was describing her at the end of the story. I have read that this is not Alexander's best work so I'll probably try another one.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    I really only read this novel by Alexander to get some more background on the Russian Revolution. Ultimately, he is a disappointing writer. He knows his Russian history, but knowledge does not necessarily make a good author. Elizaveth was an interesting person and had a fascinating life, but the story as told here is emotionally quite dull.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Diane

    Knowing little about the Russian Revolution, I found this fascinating. The attention to detail was exceptional, and the author note indicated he quoted actual records when possible. This was done seamlessly without interrupting the narrative. The historical speculation was wonderful. I also enjoyed the alternating points of view.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    For a fascinating era, this historical fiction felt unimaginative and shallowly investigated. It made me want to research Russian history, but it didn't make me want to read anything else by this author. For a fascinating era, this historical fiction felt unimaginative and shallowly investigated. It made me want to research Russian history, but it didn't make me want to read anything else by this author.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Agnieszka

    Easy to read historical fiction... even if you don't know a lot about the historical period. History is well done, never boring or overwhelming. The characters seem a little clichéd, but again... easy read which draws you into story. Easy to read historical fiction... even if you don't know a lot about the historical period. History is well done, never boring or overwhelming. The characters seem a little clichéd, but again... easy read which draws you into story.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Abby Vincere

    DNF. I love Robert Alexander and his writing style and the subjects he picks, but somehow I found this one very hard to get into after the prologue. I no longer own a copy of this book, I lost it, and I don't see myself seeking out another, so I guess that's it for this one. DNF. I love Robert Alexander and his writing style and the subjects he picks, but somehow I found this one very hard to get into after the prologue. I no longer own a copy of this book, I lost it, and I don't see myself seeking out another, so I guess that's it for this one.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Bridget

    Booooooring! I would have been better off reading the Wikipedia article on Elisabeth Fyodorovna.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    Interesting, but sad, as most stories from this time period are. The narrative style was effective but sometimes a little annoying.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Liz Lawrence

    I love historical fiction as well as biographies. This book combines the two. I found both protagonists intriguing and easy to sympathize with. I really enjoyed this book.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Catherine

    Author: Robert Alexander Title: The Romanov Bride Publication Info: Penguin Books, London, Feb. 2009 Genre: Historical Fiction/ Biographical Fiction Recommended Age: 15+ Summary: Born and raised by her mother to have a special care for the poor, Ella is unable to shake her compassionate feelings, even towards her tyrranical husband as he rules her and the people of Moscow with an iron fist. However when the tragedies of Russian Revolution strike, Ella’s life is transformed. Alternating with Ella’s sto Author: Robert Alexander Title: The Romanov Bride Publication Info: Penguin Books, London, Feb. 2009 Genre: Historical Fiction/ Biographical Fiction Recommended Age: 15+ Summary: Born and raised by her mother to have a special care for the poor, Ella is unable to shake her compassionate feelings, even towards her tyrranical husband as he rules her and the people of Moscow with an iron fist. However when the tragedies of Russian Revolution strike, Ella’s life is transformed. Alternating with Ella’s story, there is a man named Pavel, a poor Russian worker whose revolutionary ideas are fueled by his grief over the protests to the Tsar on what later becomes known as Bloody Sunday. Fueled by his hate for the Tsar, Pavel is determined to irradicate the House of Romanov, no matter what the cost. Although he is determined, the interactions he will have with Ella unwillingly change his life. Evaluation: This book is definitely a page turner and the background stories of both Ella and Pavel give amazing insight into the choices they make later in the book, but there is one setback. Since this book is about a Roman Empire, there is a lot of terminology and phrases that at times can make the story hard to follow, especially with Ella’s family tree being important to the plot. This book alternates between two people and it was really interesting to see the contrast between their lives and personalities. At some point in the story they are both hit with grief, but they cope with it in opposite ways. One turns to God and dedicates themselves to helping others, while the other is consumed with anger and vows revenge. Pavel’s Story is also an eye opener because his perspective allows you to see how bad the living conditions were in Russia and how most of the time these Revolutionists were severely depressed and protested because they were tired of their government mistreating them. All in all, it was a great story, and if you are interested in the topic of the Russian Revolution, this is the book for you. This book puts you in the shoes of Grand Duchess Elisavyeta and helps you to understand why the Russian Government made the choices they did.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lesley

    Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, there has been a regrettable revisionism towards the Romanov emperors. The quite literal hagiography of the Romanovs (they were declared saints and "passion bearers" of the Orthodox church in 2000) ignores the monumental human rights abuses they inflicted on Russia's peasantry and against anyone viewed as political enemies, including Jews. Alexander continues this unmerited absolution in his fanciful tale of Princess Ella, sister of the Empress Alexandra, Ever since the fall of the Soviet Union, there has been a regrettable revisionism towards the Romanov emperors. The quite literal hagiography of the Romanovs (they were declared saints and "passion bearers" of the Orthodox church in 2000) ignores the monumental human rights abuses they inflicted on Russia's peasantry and against anyone viewed as political enemies, including Jews. Alexander continues this unmerited absolution in his fanciful tale of Princess Ella, sister of the Empress Alexandra, and wife of Grand Duke Sergei, one of the cruelest autocrats in the regime. Yet it's also the story of Pavel, a worker who is radicalized when his young wife is murdered during the massacre of thousands on Bloody Sunday in 1906. In alternating chapters they recount their experiences leading up to the revolution. While the author is sympathetic to Pavel, there is a condescension and barely muffled contempt for both his cause and his poverty ("I am filthy with sin!"), while Ella is presented as kind, beautiful, pious, and completely innocent of any of her family's crimes. While I'm sure she was a perfectly nice woman, the lengths Alexander goes to justify her behavior and her supposed ignorance of the sufferings of the Russian people boggles the mind. Pavel is tortured with guilt for his crimes, Ella seems mildly bothered by hers. In her rare direct encounters with Pavel and other peasants, their worshipful idolatry of her, and her beatific platitudes about forgiveness are nauseating. A pleasant enough piece of fluff, with enough royalty porn trappings to satisfy the most ardent Downton Abbey fan.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.