The Winter Palace : A Novel of Catherine the Great
The epic, sensuous story of Catherine the Great's ruthless rise to power, through the eyes of a young girl groomed as the Empress's spy in 18th Century Russia. When Vavara, a young orphaned Polish girl, is brought to serve at Empress Elizabeth's glittering, dangerous court in St Petersburg, she is schooled by the Chancellor himself in skills from lock-picking to love-making, learning above all else to stay silent - and listen. Soon, she is Elizabeth's 'tongue' - her secret eyes and ears.
The epic, sensuous story of Catherine the Great's ruthless rise to power, through the eyes of a young girl groomed as the Empress's spy in 18th Century Russia.
Advance praise for "The Winter Palace" "Stachniak's brilliant, bold historical novel of eighteenth-century Russia is a masterful account of one woman's progress toward absolute monarchical rule. . . . This superb biographical epic proves the Tudors don't have a monopoly on marital scandal, royal intrigue, or feminine triumph."--"Booklist" (starred review) "Awash in period details and as gripping and suspenseful as any thriller, "The Winter Palace" gives us a unique look at the making of a queen. Eva Stachniak allows us to peep through keyholes and overhear whispers as we navigate the intrigues of Imperialist Russia along with Sophie, the princess who became Catherine the Great. I loved this book, and this glimpse into a world of silk and shadows, grandeur and gossip."--Melanie Benjamin, author of "The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb"
Eva Stachniak was born in Wroclaw, Poland, and now lives in Canada, where she has been a radio broadcaster and college English and humanities lecturer. Her debut novel, Necessary Lies, won the Amazon.com/Books in Canada First Novel Award, and her second novel, Dancing with Kings, has been translated into seven languages. She lives in Toronto,where she is working on her second novel about Catherine the Great, also to be published by Doubleday.