The Tsarinas Daughter by Ellen Alpsten with an excerpt

If you have ever wondered about a Russian historical novel you will enjoy this book. This gives a hard look at what happened after Peter the Great died without really leaving a right of succession. This story shows what happened through the eyes of the youngest daughter of Peter theGreat and his second wife Catherine. After reading this I know that I would not have wanted to live during this time in history. Elizabeth was not always easy to like but she does seem to have been the best of a sad bunch. I liked that this did show how Elizabeth felt about all her relatives and their times as the Tsars or Tsarinas of Russia. I received a copy of this book from St. Martins Press fir a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.

I give this book a four out of five stars.


Ellen Alpsten’s stunning new novel, The Tsarina’s Daughter, is the dramatic story of Elizabeth, daughter of Catherine I and Peter the Great, who ruled Russia during an extraordinary life marked by love, danger, passion and scandal.

Born into the House of Romanov to the all-powerful Peter the Great and his wife, Catherine, a former serf, beautiful Tsarevna Elizabeth is the envy of the Russian empire. She is insulated by luxury and spoiled by her father, who dreams for her to marry King Louis XV of France and rule in Versailles. But when a woodland creature gives her a Delphic prophecy, her life is turned upside down. Her volatile father suddenly dies, her only brother has been executed and her mother takes the throne of Russia.

As friends turn to foes in the dangerous atmosphere of the Court, the princess must fear for her freedom and her life. Fate deals her blow after blow, and even loving her becomes a crime that warrants cruel torture and capital punishment: Elizabeth matures from suffering victim to strong and savvy survivor. But only her true love and their burning passion finally help her become who she is. When the Imperial Crown is left to an infant Tsarevich, Elizabeth finds herself in mortal danger and must confront a terrible dilemma–seize the reins of power and harm an innocent child, or find herself following in the footsteps of her murdered brother.

Hidden behind a gorgeous, wildly decadent façade, the Russian Imperial Court is a viper’s den of intrigue and ambition. Only a woman possessed of boundless courage and cunning can prove herself worthy to sit on the throne of Peter the Great.


Prologue The Tsarinas Daughter / Ellen Alpsten / St.MartinsPress / Pub 03/15/22
1st EXCERPT – Prologue In the Winter Palace, St. Nicholas Day, 6th December 1741
Ivan is innocent – my little nephew is a baby, and as pure as only a one-year-old can be. But tonight, at my order, the infant Tsar will be guilty as charged.
I fight the urge to pick him up and kiss him; it would only make things worse. Beyond his nursery door, there is a low buzzing sound, like of angry bees ready to swarm the Winter Palace. Soldier’s boots scrape and shuffle. Spurs clink like stubby vodka glasses and bayonets are being fixed to muskets. These are the sounds of things to come. The thought spikes my heart with dread.
There is no other choice. It is Ivan, or me. Only one of us can rule Russia, the other one condemned to a living death. Reigning Russia is a right that has to be earned as much as inherited: he and my cousin, the Regent, doom the country to an eternity under a foreign yoke. The realm will be lost; the invisible holy bond between Tsar and people irretrievably torn.
I, Elizabeth, am the only surviving child of Peter the Great’s fifteen sons and daughters. Tonight, if I hesitate too long, I might become the last of my siblings to die.
Curse the Romanovs! I in vain try to bar the prophecy, which has blighted my life, from my thoughts. Puddles form on the parquet floor as slush drips from my boots; their worn, thigh-high leather soaked from my dash across St. Petersburg. Despite my being an Imperial Princess – the Tsarevna Elizabeth Petrovna Romanova – no footman had hooked a bear skin across my lap to protect me against the icy wind and driving snow while I sat snug in a sled; I had no muff to raise to my face in that special graceful gesture of the St.

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