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Romanov

de Nadine Brandes

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2521981,045 (3.81)3
My name is Anastasia . . . The history books say I died . . . They don't know the half of it. Anastasia "Nastya" Romanov was given a single mission: to smuggle an ancient spell into her suitcase on her way to exile in Siberia. It might be her family's only salvation. But the leader of the Bolshevik army is after them, and he's hunted Romanov before. Nastya's only chances of saving herself and her family are either to release the spell and deal with the consequences, or to enlist help from Zash, the handsome soldier who doesn't act like the average Bolshevik. Nastya has only dabbled in magic, but it doesn't frighten her half as much as her growing attraction to Zash. She likes him. She thinks he might even like her. That is, until she's on one side of a firing squad . . . and he's on the other. Praise for Romanov: "I am obsessed with this book! A magical twist on history that will have Anastasia fans wishing for more. I loved every detail Brandes wrote. If you love magic and Imperial Russia, you want Romanov on your shelf!" --Evelyn Skye "Romanov will cast a spell on readers and immerse them in a history anyone would long to be a part of." --Sasha Alsberg "If you think you know the story behind Anastasia Romanov, think again! The perfect blend of history and fantasy, Romanov takes a deeper look at the days leading up to the family's tragedy, while also exploring the possibilities behind the mysteries that have long intrigued history buffs everywhere. Brandes weaves a brilliant and intricate saga of love, loss, and the power of forgiveness. Prepare to have your breath stolen by this gorgeous novel of brilliant prose and epic enchantment." --Sara Ella… (mais)
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I'm fascinated by history, everyone can tell that from the many historical books I read throughout the years. I'm also fascinated by countries or places n this world that have their own tradition and centuries of folklore and myths. One such country is Russia. No person can deny that Russia has inspired so many authors starting from Naomi Novik and "Uprooted" to Leigh Bardugo and "Grishaverse". Apart from Russia's folklore, their tsars have always been something of the talk of the town. And of course I would be so interested as to read about the Romanov family, even if this was just a retelling of their ending and what might have happened to that missing Romanov daughter, Anastasia. Therefore, I picked "Romanov" by Nadine Brandes.
The Romanovs have abided the throne and are send away by the Bolsheviks. They are now located in Tobolsk, Siberia, but not for long. In Tobolsk they had gotten to know their guards and exile was bearable. Until one day the Bolsheviks come again, new ones this time. They are there to take tsar Nikolai and his family away. But not all of them can move. Alexei is too sick to travel. So the family gets separated, without knowing when and if they will see each other. As the former tsar is about to leave he puts upon his daughter Anastasia the family's salvation. She is to find and protect the magical matryoshka doll, the one that holds an ancient spell that could be their only hope. But the leader of the Bolshevik army that requested their transfer is after all magical items and the matryoshka doll specifically.
If Nastya wants to save her family she needs to camaraderie to a Bolshevik soldier, one that seems to be a bit different than the rest. But, can she really trust him with something so important as the salvation of her family? He is a Bolshevik after all. And, as if that is not enough, Alexei gets worse by the day and she has so little knowledge of magic, not enough to give him his health back or to take her beloved family pout of this nightmare.
Since this is a historical fiction with a magical twist it is pretty certain that it cannot be that much different from the actual story. So, if one knew the story of the Romanov family, they pretty much know what to expect. As soon as the whole family is transferred to Ekaterinburg the reader waits for the inevitable to happen. In the meantime we get to know more of the balance between the members of the family. We get to know some little details as to what their capture would mean to them or the differences that Brandes put in the story to make it more magical and justify the actions to come in the future.
I really liked how magic is incorporated in the story. Nastya (Anastasia), who's story this actually is, wants to become a spell maker but she didn't have enough time to advance on her studies. Rasputin is portrayed as a spell maker himself and her tutor, one that would only give her glimpses of spell making. Until he is arrested and everything is lost. For me though the magical part was not enough. I did enjoy the historical part, as well as the love and relationship between the siblings, that is Nastya and Alexei, the little tsar. And given that I like reading Russian tales the whole story was very good for me. I just wanted more of the magic that wafts in the air. That being said, I did like the hopeful ending, even though we all know how that turned out to be. ( )
  GeorgiaKo | Dec 1, 2020 |
These fantasy historical retellings are always a bit of a hit or miss for me and I would have to say this one is definitely one of the best I've read.

To be honest, I'm not the most educated on Russian history and I've not consumed any piece of Romanov related history before this novel. But, this book has made me more curious about the murders of the Romanov family and the lore around their murders.

I loved the fantasy aspect of this book, but it didn't feel as important to the plot as I would have liked it to be. The importance and the origin of spells and spell masters was not explained at all, and I would have loved if the author had delved into that aspect of the novel a little bit more.

Overall, I feel this book was a great introduction for me into Russian history and I definitely would recommend this book to anyone else who is a fan of historical retellings. ( )
  EmilyScaff | Sep 2, 2020 |
I usually enjoy reading historical fiction and this one was pretty good. It was a little slow at first and didn't really start grabbing my attention until the last third of the book. The history of the Romanov's is extremely interesting and I love that at the end of the book the author explains fact from fiction. I love how strong willed and determined Anastasia continued to be even multiple things went wrong. There is some romance added but it wasn't overly done. It fit really well with the rest of the story. There are definitely some heartbreaking moments but there are also light hearted fun ones as well. The ending is also very well done. I highly recommend to anyone who enjoys historical fiction.


I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review from Netgalley. ( )
1 vote KeriLynneD | Jul 3, 2020 |
The book is a fictional rendering of the events of Russia in the early 1900. What happened to the Romanovs and the truth behind the missing bodies of two of the kids remains yet to be discovered completely. This book turns no stone unturned when it comes to the setting the book in that era. I never questioned the authencity of the events in the story, which goes on to prove that it was so well woven with the actual history of the Romanovs. Though fiction, it gave the feeling of knowing the characters personally, which is a great achievement on the author's part.
It was a little too detail oriented for my personal taste, which is why the rating 3.5 . But, this is a great end to my reading year. ( )
  manogna_thumukunta | Jun 4, 2020 |
I received this eARC from Thomas Nelson (publishers) via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of this book in any way. All quotes are taken from the uncorrected proof and are subject to change.

No one could outshout a revolution.
This felt like a bad flashback to when I tried to read an ARC of [b:Dark of the West|32949202|Dark of the West (Glass Alliance, #1)|Joanna Hathaway|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1529687538s/32949202.jpg|53576282] and could only make it a few chapters in, only this time, I could only make it about 1 chapter and then only barely.

DNF at 7%

My biggest issue with this is something that many other people will probably love about it, so probably take it with a grain of salt. The premise falls into one of my biggest bookish pet peeves: when authors take real life historical figures and fictionalize them, usually by giving them magical powers. I don't know why I hate this so much but I absolutely DESPISE this. Every time in Percy Jackson books, when another random popular real-life figure was said to actually be a demigod, I would roll my eyes and curse Riordan's name. This kind of thing honestly makes me think of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter more than it makes me think of retelling or immersion. The only book I've read that did this and didn't make me want to scream was [b:Blood Rose Rebellion|31020402|Blood Rose Rebellion (Blood Rose Rebellion, #1)|Rosalyn Eves|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1487957066s/31020402.jpg|44640238], and that's mostly because the main character wasn't a historical figure, as far as I could tell.

This book didn't feel like a retelling, it felt like a behind the scenes with a twist, and that's not what I signed up for.

Now, if the magic had felt well done, inserted seamlessly or even with some better explanations, I wouldn't have minded it as much. But it didn't. The magic felt tacked on. The inherent secrecy surrounding it didn't make it seem like a "behind the scenes", it made it feel like I was reading two different books: one a historical fiction romance, the other a fantasy novel; and they didn't mesh well, unfortunately, neither did they intrigue me.

The other biggest issue, and the main reason I simply could not go on, is that I hated the writing. Not the deeper stuff - the characterization, set-up, or exposition - though those were pretty awful too, but the actual syntax, the writing itself. It was so pompous and pretentious, over-using similes (there are other ways of making metaphors, and metaphors aren't required every other sentence to make a point), and using passive voice excessively (which doesn't make you sound artistic, it makes short scenes go on for ages and makes me needlessly bored). This book and Dark of the West both somehow made 1st person read like badly done 3rd, and I hated it.

Honestly, I'm just going to finish the ARCs I already have for this year and stop requesting new ones, and just stop reading new releases in YA all together, unless they're sequels to series I've already started. YA (fantasy in particular) has been mostly disappointing this year and I'm sick and tired of it. If the writing standards are lowering in traditional publishing, then their sales and fan response ought to lower as well. Seems only fair. ( )
  Faith_Murri | Dec 9, 2019 |
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Miller, JeffDesigner da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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My name is Anastasia . . . The history books say I died . . . They don't know the half of it. Anastasia "Nastya" Romanov was given a single mission: to smuggle an ancient spell into her suitcase on her way to exile in Siberia. It might be her family's only salvation. But the leader of the Bolshevik army is after them, and he's hunted Romanov before. Nastya's only chances of saving herself and her family are either to release the spell and deal with the consequences, or to enlist help from Zash, the handsome soldier who doesn't act like the average Bolshevik. Nastya has only dabbled in magic, but it doesn't frighten her half as much as her growing attraction to Zash. She likes him. She thinks he might even like her. That is, until she's on one side of a firing squad . . . and he's on the other. Praise for Romanov: "I am obsessed with this book! A magical twist on history that will have Anastasia fans wishing for more. I loved every detail Brandes wrote. If you love magic and Imperial Russia, you want Romanov on your shelf!" --Evelyn Skye "Romanov will cast a spell on readers and immerse them in a history anyone would long to be a part of." --Sasha Alsberg "If you think you know the story behind Anastasia Romanov, think again! The perfect blend of history and fantasy, Romanov takes a deeper look at the days leading up to the family's tragedy, while also exploring the possibilities behind the mysteries that have long intrigued history buffs everywhere. Brandes weaves a brilliant and intricate saga of love, loss, and the power of forgiveness. Prepare to have your breath stolen by this gorgeous novel of brilliant prose and epic enchantment." --Sara Ella

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