It's easy now to indulge in nostalgia about the era of the Romanovs, and the sheer lushness of this gorgeous book is enough to encourage the indulgence. Even the text, highly readable and informative, is a little rose-tinted in places, but perhaps the authors can hardly be blamed when the gentlemanly cruelties of the old regime look so innocent next to the quintessentially totalitarian 20th-century hell that replaced them. (Nowhere was the true nature of the new "people's" dispensation revealed more vividly than in the lurid, incompetent savagery with which Nicholas II and his family were dispatched, a story reconstructed in considerable detail here.) In any case, despite a touch of sentimentality, this is a fine short history of how the Romanov dynasty ended, artfully disguised as a coffee-table book. If you merely flip through the pictures (Ekaterinburg, Tsarkoe Selo, the Cathedral of Peter and Paul at St. Petersburg, shining like a gold dagger in the snow), you will ache to travel to Russia. If you read the text, you will learn a surprising amount about the world of an almost comically ineffectual man with whom the Fates amused themselves by placing him at a key turning point in modern history. Heartless autocrat that he was, you may even end up feeling sorry for him: the cure was so much worse than the disease. --Richard Farr
Peter Kurth has written for VANITY FAIR, THE NEW YORKER etc. ISADORA has taken him 10 years to write. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This is a huge heavy book. I bought it to read the story but actually it is a coffee table book. The pictures are beautiful and interesting and so is the story , but the book is so... Read morePublished 1 month ago by L. K. Whitley
Great explanation of a history that was hard to define. Kurth did it with insider information that illuminated much of the mystery. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Robert Banner
Awesome book with fabulous pictures, a must have for those interested in this dynasty.Published 7 months ago by alex
This book beautifully captures the magical lost world of the Romanovs. Breathtaking photos are accompanied by an historical account of the dynasty's roots to its untimely end. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Bookish Blonde
We are visiting St. Petersburg for two days while on a Baltic cruise. This is a great book to read in preparation for history.Published 16 months ago by High Altitude Gran
Unfortunately, a few of the pages are completely stuck together with something, such that they can't be separated. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Lorraine Stevens