Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
This book is currently available for pre-order. Publication date is May 7, 2019.
Romanov by Nadine Brandes
From the author of Fawkes comes a magical take on the story of Anastasia Romanov.
The history books say I died.
They don’t know the half of it.
Anastasia “Nastya” Romanov was given a single mission: to smuggle an ancient spell into her suitcase on her way to exile in Siberia. It might be her family’s only salvation. But the leader of the Bolshevik army is after them . . . and he’s hunted Romanov before.
Nastya’s only chances of saving herself and her family are either to release the spell and deal with the consequences, or to enlist help from Zash, the handsome soldier who doesn’t act like the average Bolshevik. Nastya’s only dabbled in magic, but it doesn’t frighten her half as much as her growing attraction for Zash. She likes him. She thinks he might even like her . . .That is, until she’s on one side of a firing squad . . . and he’s on the other.
This book was right up my alley. As a person with two degrees in history, an emphasis in European wars, and a fascination with conspiracy theories, I have long loved the shaky truth, myth, fantasy, and reality of the end of the Romanov line.
My background knowledge made me hesitant, but very curious, to read Romanov by Nadine Brandes, worried if it would hold up to my expectations and how it would handle what was real.
all most historical fiction, what’s happened has happened. We cannot change history, no matter how unfair, unjust, or messy it is. I found this book to do an excellent job honoring the past, while weaving a memorable and believable fiction throughout.
I have read another of Ms. Brandes’ books. As in that book, here she builds worlds so well – descriptive without getting lost in the details – and creates characters with such talent that the reader is loving this one, questioning that one, and feeling absolute terror for or about that one over there. Her words suck you in and make you want to race through the book to find out what happens, but also pause because you don’t want the end to come.
At one point I found myself internally screaming at the characters, “No! Don’t do that! Don’t you know what’s coming?!?!” But, no. They did. History remained as it was. But, what came next was also so well done I couldn’t put the book down, wanting to know the ultimate fate and end of the story.
I really did love this book.
It can be a little strange or difficult to pick a favorite chapter out of a fiction book, but it tends to happen for me. Before I even finished reading this chapter for the first time I knew it was my favorite. Now, once you read this chapter you might gasp and think, “What is she thinking?!?”
Let me explain, without giving anything away.
I love this chapter because it is the absolute turning point in the story. It is here that the author fully demonstrates her incredible talent for storytelling, character development, suspense. The raw emotions set forth on the page are so well handled that I felt each one along with the characters and both loved and hated Ms. Brandes for making me feel so much.
The Final Verdict
My rating: 5 stars
Would I recommend? Yes
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