Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Mirrored World by Debra Dean

Publisher: Harper Collins 
Pages: 256 
Format: book 
Buy the Book: Amazon Amazon 

Goodreads:  Born to a Russian family of lower nobility, Xenia, an eccentric dreamer who cares little for social conventions, falls in love with Andrei, a charismatic soldier and singer in the Empress's Imperial choir. Though husband and wife adore each other, their happiness is overshadowed by the absurd demands of life at the royal court and by Xenia's growing obsession with having a child—a desperate need that is at last fulfilled with the birth of her daughter. But then a tragic vision comes true, and a shattered Xenia descends into grief, undergoing a profound transformation that alters the course of her life. Turning away from family and friends, she begins giving all her money and possessions to the poor. Then, one day, she mysteriously vanishes.

Years later, dressed in the tatters of her husband's military uniform and answering only to his name, Xenia is discovered tending the paupers of St. Petersburg's slums. Revered as a soothsayer and a blessed healer to the downtrodden, she is feared by the royal court and its new Empress, Catherine, who perceives her deeds as a rebuke to their lavish excesses. In this evocative and elegantly written tale, Dean reimagines the intriguing life of Xenia of St. Petersburg, a patron saint of her city and one of Russia's most mysterious and beloved holy figures. This is an exploration of the blessings of loyal friendship, the limits of reason, and the true costs of loving deeply.



Kritters Thoughts:  A book that is narrated by Dasha, but centers around Xenia who in the middle of her life makes a drastic change and Dasha is there with a front row view.  Starting from the very beginning, this short book took a quick trip through Xenia and Dasha's entire lives from a very young age through tragedy to older age.

There were a few things that just made this book one of those that I didn't enjoy so much.  I felt like there were big missing pieces that I would have rather had more detail.  I thought it was weird that Dasha was narrating the story, I think Xenia should have narrated a part of it as she was a very central character, I would have liked to see the world through her eyes a little.

When I decided to review this, I had just finished a book based in Russia and was excited to read another, but this one just didn't hit the right notes with me like the previous one.  For those who have a passion for fiction based in Russia, this book would be right up your alley.

Rating: not such a good read

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from TLC Book Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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