There is something poignant and haunting with lives ended too soon. We make icons of them and project our own fears of destiny unfulfilled. Marilyn Monroe, Princess Diana, James Dean or at a larger scale the Romanov family.
I was always fascinated by the history of the reign of the last star Nicolas and his family. I picked up this book in the hope of learning more on the girls after having read Massie’s biography of their parents. The book is superbly researched and very well written and yet I was disappointed. We learn more about the Tsarista and the secret hemophilia of Alexey the heir to the throne than we do about the sisters.
I wish the author had referred more to their personal journals than she did but ultimately I believe it is very hard to write about the Romanov sisters. Their parents kept them isolated from the russian court and ultimately very few people knew them. In this book as in their life they are overshadowed by the hemophilia of their brother. My reaction would have been different if the book had a different title and referred to the family instead of just the girls.
The ending was rushed and it did not refer to the last days in Ekaterinburg. I since then realized that the author had written a book specifically about that so I guess she didn’t want to repeat herself. I think she could have given a little more details.
I gave it 3 out of 5 stars in Goodreads.