Rebecca's Reviews > The Romanov Bride

The Romanov Bride by Robert Alexander
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's review
May 26, 2009

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Recommended to Rebecca by: Louise

My perfect idea of a vacation is what I have experienced so far over the last three days: a beautiful beach, good food, and unlimited historical fiction. The Romanov Bride is not the best piece of literature I have ever read, but it was an absorbing easy beach read. I had never heard of The Grand Duchess Elisavyeta who was the sister of doomed Tsarina of Russia at the time of the Revolution and was married to the Tsar’s uncle, the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich. Her story is so tragic yet gripping. After her husband is blown to bits by revolutionaries in 1905, Ella experiences a religious conversion as she realizes how much the poor were alienated from the aristocracy. Thus she sells everything in her household and begins a new order of monastic women. She petitions the Russian Orthodox Church several times before they allow her to ordain the new order. Russian nuns were usually cloistered and Ella wished to have her sisters serve the impoverished community around them in Moscow, a fairly radical idea at the time.

With historical facts like that, how can you not end up with a great story? Especially given we all know what fate lay in store for all the Romanovs, even one who had been a nun for several years by the time of the October Revolution in 1917. Ella was eventually canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church for her work with the poor and sick. If you enjoy learning about extraordinary women in history and/or about the Russian Revolution, I recommend this novel.
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