Luscious: Alpsten has clearly done some brilliant research. It reads like Game of Thrones without the dragons.
Natasha Pulley, the Betty Trask Prize winning author of Filigree Street
What an astonishing bodice ripping borscht of a book. This is the ultimate Cinderella story of an illiterate peasant girl who becomes the empress of Russia. It makes Game of Thrones look like a nursery rhyme.
Daisy Goodwin, bestselling author of The Fortune Hunter
Ellen Apsten’s Tsarina brings to life the dramatic life of Catherine I, wife of Peter the Great, and afterwards Empress of Russia in her own right. She recounts this remarkable woman’s colourful life and times in the form of a novel, drawing however throughout on documentary evidence. As Catherine’s career was as melodramatic as that of any heroine of romance, this proves a highly effective approach
Count Nikolai Tolstoy, Historian & Writer