The Winter Palace

The Winter Palace When Varvara a young Polish orphan arrives at the glittering dangerous court of the Empress Elizabeth in St Petersburg she is schooled in skills ranging from lock picking to love making learning

  • Title: The Winter Palace
  • Author: Eva Stachniak
  • ISBN: 9780552777988
  • Page: 108
  • Format: Paperback
  • When Varvara, a young Polish orphan, arrives at the glittering, dangerous court of the Empress Elizabeth in St Petersburg, she is schooled in skills ranging from lock picking to love making, learning above all else to stay silent and listen Then Sophie, a vulnerable young princess, arrives from Prussia as a prospective bride for the Empress heir Set to spy on her, VavWhen Varvara, a young Polish orphan, arrives at the glittering, dangerous court of the Empress Elizabeth in St Petersburg, she is schooled in skills ranging from lock picking to love making, learning above all else to stay silent and listen Then Sophie, a vulnerable young princess, arrives from Prussia as a prospective bride for the Empress heir Set to spy on her, Vavara soon becomes her friend and confidante, and helps her navigate the illicit liaisons and the treacherous shifting allegiances of the court But Sophie s destiny is to become the notorious Catherine the Great Are her ambitions lofty and far reaching than anyone suspected, and will she stop at nothing to achieve absolute power

    • Best Read [Eva Stachniak] ✓ The Winter Palace || [Fantasy Book] PDF Ë
      108 Eva Stachniak
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      Posted by:Eva Stachniak
      Published :2020-03-01T21:44:16+00:00

    About "Eva Stachniak"

    1. Eva Stachniak

      Eva Stachniak was born in Wroc aw, Poland She moved to Canada in 1981 and has worked for Radio Canada International and Sheridan College, where she taught English and humanities Her debut novel, Necessary Lies, won the Books in Canada First Novel Award in 2000 Her first novel of Catherine the Great, The Winter Palace, has been included in the Washington Post 2011 list of most notable fiction and was a 1 international bestseller Empress of the Night, her second Catherine the Great novel was published in March of 2014.Stachniak lives in Toronto, where she has just finished writing her next novel, The Chosen Maiden, to be published in January of 2017.


    1. Find the enhanced version of this and other reviews at: flashlightcommentary.Straight out of the gate I have to give Stachniak a lot of points. In a market flooded with Tudor lit, The Winter Palace stands apart. A lover of history and historic fiction, I was overjoyed to see an author branching out. Of course, I wont be happy until someone writes a solid fiction on Crown Prince Rudolf and Baroness Marie Vetsera but Catherine the Great is definitely a step in the right direction. Overall, I enjoy [...]

    2. In the crowded historical fiction marketplace, THE WINTER PALACE stands out for being a book set in mid-eighteenth century Russia, an unusual setting. But what makes this novel unique is its perspective. Told from the viewpoint of Varvara, a young Polish woman who rises to influence in the Russian Court of Tsarina Elizabeth as a spy, we are swept into a tumultuous era when the fortunes of an entire empire hovered on the often incomprehensible whims of the aging tsarina, and where an enterprising [...]

    3. This book sets the stage for the next book, a clever idea. In The Winter Palace we read about what went on before the relatively obscure German princess Sophie Friederike Auguste von Anhalt-Zerbst-Dornburg transformed herself into the empress Catherine the Great.I found it quite an intense story about what, we would call today, an abusive and toxic environment and women who found themselves living inside it. Sophie and everybody else is placed under the tyranny of empress Elizabeth, who is a cru [...]

    4. I'm giving this novel 3.7 stars.This was an entertaining novel that read like a melodrama. The plot is believable and fastidiously executed. The writing is melodious and sentimental. The novel is immensely rich in descriptive details, especially about court etiquette, palatial decor, clothes and jewelry. Having recently read Robert Massie’s factual non-fiction title Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman, I can avow that this novel is based on meticulous research.The novel is written from th [...]

    5. This book was selected for my Historical Fiction group's January group read, and since I'm trying (somewhat successfully so far, but the year is still young) to read more group read selections, I read this one. And Well, I liked it, but I can't say that I loved it. It really wasn't what I was expecting at all, though that's not really a bad thing. Just different. I had expected this novel of Catherine the Great to be about Catherine the Great. Instead, it was about the girl, Sophie, who would be [...]

    6. Novels on Catherine the Great are few and far between, and I believe most of those are out of print and rather hard to find, so I was thrilled to bits to see a new one coming out. While this is billed as "A Novel of Catherine the Great", the narrator is Barbara (Varvara in Russian), a daughter of a Polish bookbinder who works as a spy in the household of the Empress Elizabeth, beginning at the time a young Princess Sophie is brought to court to marry Elizabeth's nephew and heir. Barbara and the [...]

    7. - I was so looking forward to this book, only to be disappointed AGAIN!- The unfortunate part is that the premise of the book, including the time period and all of the characters *could* have had such an interesting story to tell, but Stachniak falls short.- To start off with, I believe the choice of a first person narrator told from the point of a view of a spy or "tongue" under the guise as a chamber maid ruined the writer's ability to truly potray Catherine the Great.- I mean, who is she real [...]

    8. 3.5 starsEva Stachniak is an excellent writer. She immerses the reader fully into the story, allowing one to hear the susurration of silken petticoats, feel the chill bite of the howling Russian winter wind, smell the perfume and mildew which permeated the grand yet dilapidated Winter Palace. She does so with complex sentences, unlike some historical fiction writers *cough* Philippa Gregory *cough* who can't seem to string together sentences more involved than the "See Jane, See Spot, See Jane a [...]

    9. Mit diesem Buch habe ich nach langer Zeit wieder einmal einen historischen Roman zur Hand genommen und es nicht bereut.Durch die ungewöhnliche Perspektive einer Angestellten des Hofes wird die Geschichte von Katharina der Großen erzählt - bevor sie den russischen Thron für sich eroberte.Schnell kommt man in die Geschichte und fiebert mit den Protagonisten mit, wobei sich dabei vordergründlich auf deren Privatleben und weniger auf historische Ereignisse oder politische Vorgänge konzentriert [...]

    10. The Winter Palace is historical fiction, based on historical sources of the life of Catherine the Great of Russia. We see the center of the empire through the eyes of one member of the court, an insignificant child initially brought to Russia by her Polish parents. This child, Barbara, soon to be renamed Varvara, enters into the world of court intrigue after her parents death and we follow the intrigues of court life under Elizabeth, Grand Duke Peter, the search for a wife for Peter, and the tra [...]

    11. [Audiobook version]Now that the days are shorter, I was looking for a sweeping historical novel to listen to on the dark drive to and from work. This seemed ideal -- an orphaned Polish girl working in the Russian court becomes one of Empress Elizabeth's "tongues" (a palace spy) but ultimately ends up helping the young German princess Sophie to become the notorious Catherine the Great.Except, my knowledge of Russian (and European) history of that era is veeeery vague, so I honestly have no idea w [...]

    12. Die Geschichte Russlands durch die Augen von Warwara, Dienerin von Kaiserin Elisabeth und gleichzeitig Spionin von Katharina der Großen.Die Perspektive war für mich das spannendste in dem Buch. Teilweise gut rüber gebracht durch überraschende Wendung, teilweise aber auch flach und emotionslos, so dass man nicht mitfiebert.Da hatte ich definitiv mehr erwartet

    13. Historischer Roman um Katharina der Großen erzählt aus der Sicht einer Spionin, die zur Freundin der späterin Zarin wird. Liest sich gut, weiß aber noch nicht, ob ich den zweiten Teil in der nächsten Zeit auch lesen werde.

    14. I was recently sent two outstanding books for cover quotes. This is the first:Published in January next year by Doubleday, 'The Winter Palace' is the story of the ascent of the poor little German princess, Sophie who, dragged to the Russian court as bride for the youthful Grand Duke (a Prussian, who spends his life playing with his toy soldiers and fails to consummate their marriage), rises in time to become Catherine the Great.But she is not great when we meet her: she's the princess with darne [...]

    15. The winter palace by Eva is an interesting and easy to read Novel and if you are somebody who does not like to get bogged down with historical dates and facts but like to learn a little of Russian royal courts, then this is the book for you, however if you are somebody who loves historical fiction with a capital L and want your novels to read like history books then you will not enjoy this book.I picked this book up recently at an airport bookshop as the two books I had packed were heavy reading [...]

    16. For hardcore Historical fiction lovers, THE WINTER PALACE by Eva Stachniak is an excellent book. The novel gives great insight into Russian history and I thought it was fascinating. It's written from the point of view of Varvara, a young orphaned woman, who becomes a spy within the Empress' palace. Her father was a bookbinder and upon his death, Varvara is left within the Empress' care. At first, she doesn't have much choice about becoming a spy - it's either that or continue working as a seamst [...]

    17. I wasnt sure if I was going to like this, I read a mixed bag of reviews on this book. This was my first book about Catherine The Great and I have to say I really liked it. I liked the details and the author's writing style. It wasnt complicated, it was just a nice, solid read that kept me coming back for more.

    18. Zanimljiv roman o mladoj Katarini II (koja tada još nije bila "velika" pa se ne osjeti ta njena odlučnost, čvrstoćai je odlično prikazan život, muvanja, spletkarenja, špijuniranja, ljubovanjai godine idu, idu,iduk ne dođe taj dan :)

    19. As a First Reads winner, I received an advanced reader's copy, and a part of my perception of the book might be because of that. As a work of historical fiction, it serves its purpose; it describes the atmosphere and the social classes of the era in rich detail. The level of distrust and paranoia within the Russian court during Empress Elizabeth's reign is emphasized in a realistic and informational manner. However, I felt the novel lacks certain qualities that prevented me from enjoying it as m [...]

    20. Misleading back cover or reader error? Maybe a little bit of both. While I thought that the book would be a lot about the Catherine the Great, with some of the Catherinian Era enlightenment, Catherine really takes a back seat to Empress Elizabeth until about 300 pages in. About 75 pages in, Catherine slowly enters her story, 200 pages in and Elizabeth might as well have been the main character, and 300 pages in, you get to see some of Catherine's prowess (because before all this, her character s [...]

    21. A very well written, magnificent novel on the rise to power of Catherine the Great of Russia. Told by a servant, the Polish orphan Varvara, recruited as a spy [called gazette or tongue] by the conservative Elizabeth II, the novel tells of Varvara's years in Elizabeth's service and beyond. Varvara recounts the coming of a noble German teenager, who has been chosen to marry the Empress's nephew, the childish and nasty Czar Peter. Catherine suffers then chafes under the years of cruelty of her 'mot [...]

    22. This is the other historical fiction I was reading while I was reading Wolf Hall, and musing about my reactions to both. I would still say that Wolf Hall is a step above most historical fiction I've ever read, but this wasn't bad. It wasn't earth-shattering, either. But not bad.Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the changes in policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgasbook

    23. Este livro é basicamente um sem-fim de coscuvilhices, rumores e segredos que me deixou viciada do início ao fim. Eu adorei a personagem principal que é a narradora da história e é uma espiã na corte russa. É ela que nos vai contando as peripécias que vão acontecendo e que vão levar á ascensão de Catarina, a grande. A história está muito bem escrita e levou-me a torcer por algumas personagens só para mais tarde me fazer detestá-las. Bem, concluindo, foi uma mistura de sentimentos. [...]

    24. Ein schönes Buch, dass das Leben von Katharina der Großen näher bringt aber gleichzeitig die Geschichte von Barbara einer "Spionin" bei Hofe erzählt. Die Geschichte ist sehr spannend erzählt und die wenigen Längen konnte man gut aushalten. Ich habe viel über die russische Geschichte gelernt und bin gespannt auf Band 2.

    25. More than anything else I hate to see a truly gifted writer fail to achieve potential. To succeed in crafting wonderful prose, creating an enveloping atmosphere, only then to fail when history itself has given you the very plot and characters you need spin out your tale in a stunning coup de grace!Eva Stachniak chose an interesting, completely fictional narrator, which does allow her interesting roving viewpoints throughout the palace. Her narrator is the orphaned daughter of the bookbinder to t [...]

    26. Opinião do blogue Chaise Longue: girlinchaiselongueA Rússia czarista sempre exerceu um forte fascínio em mim. Culpem Anastasia se quiserem. Mas, na literatura, poucas vezes posso dar azo a esse interesse, o que faz com que livros como O Palácio de Inverno, sejam, imediatamente leitura obrigatória. E esta, em especial, foi tudo o que podia ter pedido e mais ainda. Eva Stachniak, escreve com requinte e beleza, deslumbrando-nos através de palavras apaixonadas e descrições que nos cantam à [...]

    27. Guys, I've been bitten by the all things Russian bug. Lucky for me, 2012 is shaping up to be the year of Russian lit, especially in the genre of historical fiction, which is one of my favorites as you may have figured out. I was so excited once I heard this book was coming out. Back in August, I visited Odessa in Ukraine, which had basically been planned out by Catherine the Great. There are statues and plaques of her everywhere in the city. It's a cool city; definitely one of the more tradition [...]

    28. Barbara is a Prussian bookbinder's daughter who moves to Russia with her family so that her father can have better work opportunities. After the deaths of her parents, Barbara goes to work in the Imperial Palace, where she quickly makes herself useful by becoming a spy. She is ideally placed and of the perfect age to befriend young Sophie when she arrives in the palace to marry the Grand Duke Peter, heir to the Imperial Throne. Sophie is renamed Catherine and Barbara remains by her side as she i [...]

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