From the outside looking in, the life of a princess appears to be that of a charmed life. But if one was to look from the inside out, the perspective would be completely different.
Maria Feodorovna was not just born into a royal house, she married into one. Her story is chronicled in the new novel, The Romanov Empress: A Novel of Tsarina Maria Feodorovna. Written by C. W. Gortner, the author takes the reader on a journey from her character’s teen years to the last years of her life. Maria Feodorovna started her life as Princess Dagmar of Denmark. As a teenager, she married the future Tsar Alexander III of Russia. She would go on to have six children, five of whom would live to adulthood. Her eldest son, Nicholas II of Russia, is remembered as the last Tsar of Russia before the Communist Revolution.
Known to her loved ones as Minnie, Maria was not a shrinking violet by any stretch of the imagination. Intelligent, capable and strong-willed, Maria was the woman behind the throne. She may not have yielded power directly, but her influence was not unnoticed by those around her.
I really enjoyed this book. It’s not a short book in terms of length, but that’s ok. This is the type of book that should be read slowly so that every moment can be savored and remembered. The author has brilliantly found a way to balance the history and the endless myriad details of the period with the everyday humanity of her characters. The novel has an almost cinematic feel to it. It was as if I could not just see this world, but feel lit, touch it and live in int.
I absolutely recommend it.