Gorgeous cover alert!
Release date: May 7, 2019. Publisher: Thomas Nelson
This is a fantasy re-telling of Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna of Russia. Some of the events are historical and some have been embellished by the author. The most significant fantastical aspect is the addition of magic, or spell-casting. There is an ink that masters use to write down spells and they are activated in various ways and can heal, create illusions, etc.
I have always been fascinated by the story of the last tsar and his family. They were brutally assassinated by the Bolshevik/Red Army. There was a mystery as to whether Anastasia and her brother, Alexei, might have survived because when the remains of the family were discovered, two bodies were missing. In 2007, the bodies were found, and in 2009, DNA tests concluded one of the bodies was Alexei’s and one was a sister. It was never concluded which grave site Anastasia was buried in, as the results could have also been those of her sister, Maria, who was close in age.
The tsar and his family are portrayed here as kind, humble, of good humor, and optimism. Anastasia (Nastya) is a mischievous prankster. They try to make the best of their capture/exile. A romance with a fictional male character has been created for Nastya.
Overall, I quite enjoyed this. I thought the resolution with the villain was unique and perfect. Anastasia is a great heroine, loyal, determined, and of good heart. I recommend!
Thank you Netgalley and publisher for a digital copy to read and review.