New York Times bestselling author Charles Belfoure takes readers on a breathless journey from the gilded ballrooms of Imperial Russia to the grim violence of the pogroms, in his latest thrilling historical adventure.
St Petersburg, 1903. Prince Dimitri Markhov counts himself lucky to be a close friend of Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra. Cocooned by the glittering wealth of the Imperial court, the talented architect lives a life of luxury and comfort, by the side of his beautiful but spiteful wife, Princess Lara. But when Dimitri is confronted by the death and destruction wrought by a pogrom, he is taken aback. What did these people do to deserve such brutality? The tsar tells him the Jews themselves were to blame, but Dimitri can’t forget what he’s seen.
Educated and passionate, Doctor Katya Golitsyn is determined to help end Russian oppression. When she meets Dimitri at a royal ball, she immediately recognizes a kindred spirit, and an unlikely affair begins between them. As their relationship develops, Katya exposes Dimitri to the horrors of the Tsar’s regime and the persecution of the Jewish people, and he grows determined to make a stand . . . whatever the cost.
Dmitri, a close friend to Tsar Nicholas, is slowly becoming aware of the travesty of this regime. When a Jewish Pogrom happens in front of his eyes, he is devastated by the loss of life and the destruction. He vows to stop this even if he has to betray his best friend.
If you are familiar with Charles Belefore, you know his stories are a slow burn but worth every minute. And this is the first one I have listened to. I was afraid I would “zone out”. Well, that did not happen! This is a unique story and I was tuned in! I enjoyed the history. Plus, I was captivated by Doctor Katya Golitsyn. She is a strong female character during terrible time.
I also enjoyed reading about how “out of his element” the Tsar actually was. Tsar Nicholas was a very good father and husband but he was not a ruler. He was very out of touch about his country and it lead to his downfall. Also, the Russian aristocracy rules are fascinating indeed!
The narrator, Nancy Peterson, did a fabulous job with the accents and the characters, including the southern accent. I was impressed with her ability. Sometimes a narrator can hinder a story if there are accents. But Nancy definitely nailed it!
I received this novel from the publisher for a honest review.