Friday, April 5, 2013

Book Club Friday: The Winter Palace

It's time for another book club Friday!  Back with another historical fiction book, this time a different period - imperial Russia.  I honestly don't know a lot about the time period, but I am fascinated by it.

From Goodreads:
From award-winning author Eva Stachniak comes this passionate novel that tells the epic story of Catherine the Great’s improbable rise to power—as seen through the ever-watchful eyes of an all-but-invisible servant close to the throne.

Her name is Barbara—in Russian, Varvara. Nimble-witted and attentive, she’s allowed into the employ of the Empress Elizabeth, amid the glitter and cruelty of the world’s most eminent court. Under the tutelage of Count Bestuzhev, Chancellor and spymaster, Varvara will be educated in skills from lock picking to lovemaking, learning above all else to listen—and to wait for opportunity. That opportunity arrives in a slender young princess from Zerbst named Sophie, a playful teenager destined to become the indomitable Catherine the Great. Sophie’s destiny at court is to marry the Empress’s nephew, but she has loftier, more dangerous ambitions. What Sophie needs is an insider at court, a loyal pair of eyes and ears who knows the traps, the conspiracies, and the treacheries that surround her. Varvara will become Sophie’s confidante—and together the two young women will rise to the pinnacle of absolute power. 

As I said, I don't know a lot about this time period, but I did really enjoy this book.  I thought the story of how Catherine the Great came to be in Russia and how she became Empress (it is fiction so don't know how accurate it is).  The book told an interesting and entertaining story and kept me engaged.  The book ended right around the time she became Empress, but I wanted to story to go on, which to me is always a sign of a good book.  I would love to read more about the time period.

What are you reading right now?  What should I read next?

1 comment:

  1. I've been wanting to read this one for a while now. I don't know a lot about Russian history either, which is one of the reasons it seems to intriguing to me. Definitely good to know it's worth checking out!