rating: 4 of 5 stars
I thoroughly enjoyed this. Rasputin was such a quixotic individual and it's hard to sift through the historical record and get a clear picture. I found that this book fleshed out a lot of the known traits and activities of this enigmatic man in a way that made the contradictions more understandable. I also thought the author did a good job in relating the story from Marie's point of view. I came away from the book feeling like I was trying to accept all the contradictions in his life just as she had to. I also learned something that I either forgot, or never knew and that was that the Russian people did not know that Alexei was a hemophiliac. This was absolutely crucial to the decision to have Rasputin killed. Without this all important reason, it seemed to the aristocracy and the public that Rasputin was treating the Empress as a lover and that he had tremendous influence over public policy.
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