This sweeping novel takes readers behind palace walls to see the end of Imperial Russia through the eyes of the first daughter of the last tsar
Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna Romanov comes of age amid a shifting tide for the great dynasties of Europe. But even as unrest simmers in the capital, Olga is content to live the sheltered life her parents have built for her and her sisters: hiding from the world on account of their mother’s ill health, their brother Alexei’s secret affliction, and rising controversy over Father Grigori Rasputin, the priest on whom the tsarina relies. Olga’s only escape comes from the grand tea parties her aunt hosts amid the shadow court of Saint Petersburg — a world of opulent ballrooms, scandalous flirtation, and whispered conversation.
As war approaches, the palaces of Russia are transformed. Olga and her sisters trade their gowns for nursing habits, tending to the wounded bodies and minds of Russia’s military officers. As troubling rumours trickle in from the front, Olga dares to hope that a budding romance might survive whatever the future holds. But when tensions run high and supplies run low, fiery protests and calls for revolution threaten to end three hundred years of Romanov rule.
At turns glittering and harrowing, The Last Grand Duchess is a story about dynasty, duty, and love, but above all, it’s the story of a family who would choose devotion to each other over everything — including their lives.