ROMANOV SISTERSHELEN RAPPAPORT Book Number: 84983 Product format: Hardback
Sub-titled 'The Lost Lives of the Daughters of Nicholas and Alexandra', the four Romanov sisters, Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia, were brutally murdered by revolutionaries in the fateful cellar at Ekaterinburg in 1918, and it has since proved almost impossible to think about them without being aware of that devastating fact. But this sensitive and moving biography probes their stories for the richness and fun that they enjoyed during their short lives, and against all the odds it is an inspiring and enjoyable read. The chapter headings tell their own story, from 'What a disappointment! Fourth girl!' to 'Terrible things are going on in St Petersburg'. In 1914 Olga and Tatiana Romanova were among the most wealthy and marriageable princesses in royal circles, with glamorous Tatiana being paired off in the press with the future Edward VIII. On the outbreak of war the two girls trained as nurses, but the revolution sent them into exile, and Christmas 1917 was particularly poignant, spent under house arrest in Siberia. Deprived of The Times, they heard little news, though the October revolution in Petrograd had reached them. Meanwhile the temperature plummeted to -23 C. On Christmas Day they walked through the snow to church, where the priest caused controversy by using their imperial titles. The girls decorated a tree with a wonderful resinous scent, and they presented each of the twenty guards with a gospel and bookmark at their own private vespers. The end was not far away. 492pp, beautiful black and white photos.
Published price: £22
Bibliophile price: £7.50