Challenges: The Eponymous Challenge
# of pages: 229
Quote: “Given our common age we were able to see things others could not, however, and as such the route around the dining room table became a troika track, the large potted palm in the drawing room became an oasis in the Sahara, and later the dogs, Jimmy and Joy, chasing and barking after us, were transformed into rabid wolves. Truth be told, we occupied ourselves for hours with a talent I have long since lost.” -Misha p. 124
This is a fascinating version of the events of the last Tsar’s final days before his death in 1918. Although I knew the basics about this historical event, this book was an easy way to learn so much more. Alexander includes many real documents and closely follows true events through his fictionalized account of this period of history, so it really is a learning experience as well as a story.
The story is told by Misha, an old man living in America who witnessed the final days of the last Tsar and the Tsar’s family. He is recording his account of what really happened, especially on the fateful night of July 16-17, 1918. The reader experiences shock and surprise as they journey with Misha and his granddaughter, Kate, on the re-discovery of the truth.
I’ve been inspired to do my own research on the deaths of the last Tsar and his family. I want to see how Alexander’s account lines up with what is known of the truth and see how likely his version of the story is. Alexander has a webpage, http://www.thekitchenboy.com/ that I’m planning on visiting one of these days to begin. I recommend this book to everyone, especially if you enjoy history or are already studying this event for a class or on your own.