Monday, June 23, 2014

Review: Tsarina by J Nelle Patrick

Natalya knows a secret.
A magical Faberge egg glows within the walls of Russia's Winter Palace.
It holds a power rooted in the land and stolen from the mystics.
A power that promises a life of love for her and Alexei Romanov.
Power, that, in the right hands, can save her way of life.
But it's not in the right hands.

Best Bits: I love a good historical fiction novel, and if it involves any popular writing/film/tv names (The Tudors, The Romanovs, etc) I'm there. When I found out that J. Nelle Patrick was actually the pseudonym for Jackson Pearce, I was even more excited. I can't say that it was a perfect read, but for the most part I really enjoyed it. The fantasy element was an interesting twist throughout the book, and I was kept on the edge of my seat until things were resolved. 

I found it realistic that Natalya didn't really understand the purpose of the revolution. She can't understand why people are targeting those who are rich, and believes that the Romanov's will prevail. I think this is an honest portrayal of someone who is isolated in a lifestyle of wealth. So, while others may be frustrated by her naivety, I think that it provides some uniqueness to her character. It was also contrasted well with her friend, Emilia. She also has the same line of thinking, but is a bit more shallow than Natalya. It was refreshing to see over the course of the book the growth in their understanding of the world and politics.

Nit Picks: Sometimes, I felt like the story was taking place during the communist revolution, but within it's own little bubble.  For example, it's clear that Pearce did her research while she was writing this novel.  She discusses people that were involved with the Romanov family, and particularly with Rasputin, paints an interesting picture of the time. At the same time, however, there have been some changes with Alexi (who was still a young boy when he was killed). Even small changes like that made me question what was changed as a plot device, and what was accurate. 

By J Nelle Patrick
Published by Razorbill
331 Pages


danya said...

Hmm, yeah, changing some of the historical facts to allow for the storyline could certainly end up being confusing for the reader about what actually happened! I do like the sound of a magical Faberge egg, though. Plus, love that cover :D

Dazzling Mage said...

I love reading historical fiction too, and I'm particularly interested in the Russian and French revolutions. I'm curious to experience your observation of how Pearce did her changes within the story.

Really good review!

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