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Book Log: April 4

April 5, 2008

I finished Family Romance last Friday night. It was good all the way through, partly a mystery story, partly a tale of history, partly a personal memoir and partly a meditation on what makes us the people we are.  It’s hard to explain much about it without giving things away — the mysteries are best solved in their proper order, I suspect, so I’ll say nothing more. Except check this book out.

Since then, I’ve been reading Greg King’s The Court of the Last Tsar: Pomp, Power and Pageantry in the Reign of Nicholas II. Indirectly, it’s research for the current story I’m writing — I felt the need to know what life was like in a royal/imperial court at the end of the 19th century/beginning of the 20th century, partly because I’m a (mostly) egalitarian American, and I really couldn’t imagine what court life was like. The book is giving me everything I’d hoped for, and then some.

It’s dense and long, and since I have limited spacial imagination, the chapters on the palaces and the imperial yacht Standart mostly sailed right over my head. I skipped over the Moscow palaces completely. I’m not sure how much more I have — less than half, I would guess — and I’m not sure what I’ll read next.

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