Really good account of the period of time around the end of the Romanov dynasty and the royal family. I knew some parts of it before, but learned a lot. I have to take issues with two things: first, that since this edition is a reprint from 2000 with a new introduction by the author, I am sure that a lot more was known about the genetics of hemophilia in 2000 than what was known in 1967 when he wrote the book, but this is never updated. I also cannot agree with the author's view that if Alexis had not had hemophilia, the Romanov empire would not have fallen. Alexandra might have still allowed a Rasputin like character to have undue influence over her family and consequently the tsar. Tsar Nicholas would still have been an unprepared, mostly ineffective ruler. Even without Rasputin making things politically much worse for the tsar, I still think the Russian people wanted a revolution. I mean, so many other countries around them had already had a revolution or removed power from their monarchs. It is quite ironic that the palace in the "tsar's village" where the family spent the majority of their time, was supposed to be a replica of Versailles. That didn't work out so well for the French royal family. It also seems like the author is saying that Nicholas started World War I because he decided to support Serbia against Austria, almost as if he could have just left it alone and there would not have been any war, which also seems a bit far fetched. I don't think that the author made any effort to paint Rasputin as anything other than a degenerate charlatan, and I don't know if that is the whole truth. Still on the whole an excellent book.
This was a very good book and I really enjoyed learning about what happened to this family.
I found that the author put way too much emphasis on Alexei's hemophilia and not enough on all the other problems Russia was experiencing at the time for the fall of the empire.
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