Enchantments: A Novel

Enchantments: A Novel

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A "NEW YORK TIMES "NOTABLE BOOK From Kathryn Harrison, one of America's most admired literary voices, comes a gorgeously written, enthralling novel set in the final days of Russia's Romanov Empire. St. Petersburg, 1917. After Rasputin's body is pulled from the icy waters of the Neva River, his eighteen-year-old daughter, Masha, is sent to live at the imperial palace with Tsar Nikolay and his family--including the headstrong Prince Alyosha. Desperately hoping that Masha has inherited Rasputin's miraculous healing powers, Tsarina Alexandra asks her to tend to Aloysha, who suffers from hemophilia, a blood disease that keeps the boy confined to his sickbed, lest a simple scrape or bump prove fatal. Two months after Masha arrives at the palace, the tsar is forced to abdicate, and Bolsheviks place the royal family under house arrest. As Russia descends into civil war, Masha and Alyosha grieve the loss of their former lives, finding solace in each other's company. To escape the confinement of the palace, they tell stories--some embellished and some entirely imagined--about Nikolay and Alexandra's courtship, Rasputin's many exploits, and the wild and wonderful country on the brink of an irrevocable transformation. In the worlds of their imagination, the weak become strong, legend becomes fact, and a future that will never come to pass feels close at hand. Mesmerizing, haunting, and told in Kathryn Harrison's signature crystalline prose, "Enchantments" is a love story about two people who come together as everything around them is falling apart.

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  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 154.94 x 233.68 x 35.56mm | 589.67g
  • New York, NYUnited States
  • English
  • New ed.
  • 1400063477
  • 9781400063475
  • 837,884

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"Ask yourself who, in all the world, would be the best novelist to imagine being Rasputin's daughter. Kathryn Harrison makes the answer obvious. Her "Enchantments" is a stupendous work of historical imagination. --PETER CAREY, author of "Parrot and Olivier in America" "Kathryn Harrison may be best known for her personal honesty, her willingness to explore and illuminate her own, and, by implication, all of our most fearfully guarded secrets. But it could well be that in the end her true genius may be in her ability locate within the crevices of history moments of poetry and passion that electrify the reader. In "Enchantments, " Ms. Harrison takes us on a magic carpet ride to Russia one hundred years ago, and with perfect grace, impeccable style, and great narrative flair, she gives us a whole wounded world that is for the course of this utterly compelling novel as real as our own lives. Actually: more." --SCOTT SPENCER, author of "Man in the Woods "and "Endless Love" thi

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About Kathryn Harrison

Kathryn Harrison has written the novels "Thicker Than Water, Exposure, Poison, The Binding Chair, The Seal Wife, "and "Envy." Her autobiographical work includes "The Kiss, Seeking Rapture, The Road to Santiago, "and "The Mother Knot." She has also written a biography, "St. Therese of Lisieux, "and, most recently, a book of true crime, "While They Slept: An Inquiry into the Murder of a Family." She lives in New York with her husband, the novelist Colin Harrison, and their three children.

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