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The Romanovs: The Final Chapter (1995)

av Robert K. Massie

Serier: The Romanovs (4)

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
1,1021313,651 (3.96)31
The compelling quest to solve a great mystery of the twentieth century: the ultimate fate of Russia's last tsar and his family. In July 1991, nine skeletons were exhumed from a shallow grave near Ekaterinburg, Siberia, a few miles from the infamous cellar where the last tsar and his family had been murdered seventy-three years before. Were these the bones of the Romanovs? If so, why were the bones of the two younger Romanovs missing? Was Anna Anderson, celebrated in newspapers, books, and film, really Grand Duchess Anastasia? This book unearths the truth. Pulitzer Prize winner Robert K. Massie presents a colourful panorama of contemporary characters, illuminating the major scientific dispute between Russian experts and a team of Americans, whose findings - along with those of DNA scientists from Russia, America, and the UK - all contributed to solving one of history's most intriguing mysteries.… (mer)
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too long. some parts really interesting about the tsar and family. less interesting about the Romanov families who escaped and the false impersonators. ( )
  mahallett | Mar 13, 2021 |
The problem you have in reading this book is that it's very depressing; almost literally no one looks good in this narrative. Massie discusses the murder of the Russian Imperial Family in 1918, what happened to the bodies, early efforts in the Soviet period to recover the bodies, the formal effort to recover and scientifically identify the bodies, and further efforts to identify whether "Anna Anderson" was truly the Grand Duchess Anastasia. The sheer amount of selfishness, squabbling, small-mindedness, greed and in general foul behaviour that permeates the book during all of these events leaves a horrible taste in your mouth. The book is also slightly outdated (at least the edition I read), since the two "missing" bodies of the Czarevitch and one of the daughters turned up some years later. For Russian history mavens only, I'm afraid. ( )
  EricCostello | Mar 20, 2020 |
This book was not what I anticipated: a thorough story of the Romanovs’ last days and execution. Instead it was about their bones: half the book—finding them, analyzing them, dna tests, the fights over them. Most of the second half was about whether there was an imposter survivor. Finally, an extraordinarily detailed genealogy of the post-execution surviving Romanovs. No detail is left unsaid: it was well-researched, dry, and tedious, but not so dry to bail. Recommended if this is a subject of interest already. ( )
  KarenMonsen | Apr 23, 2019 |
The question of what became of the Romanovs was one the most popular mysteries of the 20th Century, giving rise to any number of fraudulent pretenders, some of whom were mad and others who were determined to get their hands on the mythical millions which the Royal family allegedly sent to the Bank of England during the war.

Massie paints a stark and realistic picture of the murder, and uses various sources to describe what was done to the bodies and the disinformation put out by the fledgling Soviet government: that the family was dead there was little doubt, but until the bodies were found and identified there would always be a smidgeon of doubt - the smidgeon that gave rise to dozens of imposters.
More than 20 years after writing Nicholas and Alexandra, Massie revisited the state of play in the Romanov saga: he details the story of how the bodies were found in 1991, the process of identification using DNA and other methods, the problems within the Russian Orthodox Church at home and abroad, and the various branches of the Romanov family competing for the title of Pretender to the Throne of all the Russias.
The story is exciting as any novel and the writing is a page-turning delight: unfortunately, as I discovered too late, the book was published in 1995 leaving 20 years of history and a myriad questions unexamined. The mystery of the where-abouts of two of the Royal children, the mystery of the missing Grand-Duchess, the mystery of the kissing suitcase, the issue of the funeral - issues left hanging because, in 1995, there were no answers.
The Romanovs: The Final Chapter is like reading a really good thriller, only to find the titular final chapter is missing. By the way, I should add I read the book deep into the countryside, many hours away from access to Google and the answers: possibly I may have been less irked by the age of the book had I immediate internet access and could find the answers as I read. ( )
  adpaton | May 27, 2015 |
This seems to go hand in hand with Massie's biography of Nicholas and Alexandra. I seriously am just gorging on the Romanov tragedy recently, so this was the perfect followup to Nicholas and Alexandra, almost an epilogue of sorts. The only thing I will say is, this was first published in 1995/1996, and two of the Romanov children's skeletons were still missing - since then, everyone has been found and accounted for, and I'd love to have that reflected in the book. Otherwise, fascinating as always. ( )
  aelizabethj | Apr 1, 2013 |
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At midnight Yakov Yurovsky, the leader of the executioners, came up the stairs to awaken the family.
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The compelling quest to solve a great mystery of the twentieth century: the ultimate fate of Russia's last tsar and his family. In July 1991, nine skeletons were exhumed from a shallow grave near Ekaterinburg, Siberia, a few miles from the infamous cellar where the last tsar and his family had been murdered seventy-three years before. Were these the bones of the Romanovs? If so, why were the bones of the two younger Romanovs missing? Was Anna Anderson, celebrated in newspapers, books, and film, really Grand Duchess Anastasia? This book unearths the truth. Pulitzer Prize winner Robert K. Massie presents a colourful panorama of contemporary characters, illuminating the major scientific dispute between Russian experts and a team of Americans, whose findings - along with those of DNA scientists from Russia, America, and the UK - all contributed to solving one of history's most intriguing mysteries.

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