Jeanne M. (Vancouver, WA)
War and Peace
If you have read "War and Peace", you have read the prologue to "Little K's" memoir.
I found this memoir filled with details of the opulent era of the Russian Imperial Ballet, fascinating. Following her life as a dancer and as the mistress of Tsar Nikolai Romanov, was engaging and filled with intrigue.
Ms. Sharp brings to life "Little K" who escapes the chaos of the uprising of the Bolsheviks and finds her way to Paris where the glories and tragedies of a century of Russian Ballet and Russian history become the beginnings of the Paris Ballet. While this not an easy "read" (it is filled with the names of royalty on and off the stage) it brings to life the tremendous swing in the life of the Russian people and the movement of the center of the ballet world. I found the story engaging, and filled with descriptions of the best of times, and the worst of times in Russian history.
Theresa W. (Apollo Beach, FL)
Little K delivers Big!
Adrienne Sharp deftly weaves the tale of a prima ballerina and the Russian court who captured her love and catapulted her career. The reader is immersed in the excesses of the imperial Czars and the frustration and poverty of the masses. The love story travels the vast Russian kingdom and survives revolutions and wars. What more would you expect from a historical novel? Well done!
Eileen F. (Ephrata, WA)
Mathilde Kschesinskaia, narrated this historical fiction, at age 99. It was a tumultuous time, in history, for the Russian people and the royalty. The narrative was very informative and at times lively. I found that reading this novel took my full attention, because of the lengthy sentence structure and the multitude of Russian names and places. I am not sorry that I read this book, but for me, it wasn't a page turner.
Sarah B. (Streamwood)
This is really good historical fiction
This book was fantastic. It weaves the known history of the time, and expanding on the story of a well known person of the time. There are also little sneak peaks, at what was coming in the future. Reading Little K's "memoir" was filled with the salacious gossip of the time, and gives the reader an insider's view. I recommend this to anyone who enjoys reading about the history of the czars, especially Nicholas II.
Jeanne W. (Columbia, MD)
Great historical fiction!
Mathilde's stream-of-consciousness narration gives the reader a behind-the-scenes vantage point to her life and times. The author overlays future events with "current" happenings, giving a greater sense of importance and understanding to both. One quibble is that the stream-of-consciousness narration leads to some extremely run-on sentences that can be hard to understand. If you like lots of dialogue, you might not like this book. Fans of Philippa Gregory should give this book a try.
Portia A. (Mount Laurel, NJ)
A novel close to the truth
What a wonderful story. Little K was real, her adventures were real, including being the prima ballarina assoluta of the Imperial Russian Ballet, mistress of the last tsar of Russia and survivor at age 99 of the Russian Revolution. This is historic fiction at its best.