story line & characters effective in telling historical story. However, narrator sounded like an oriental accent. Not effective voice for character. Lacked insight into some of the events.
I read a lot of this genre and this book was just plain boring.
Entertaining, especially after you get past the reader's style/accent, which actually works for the Russian character, but takes a bit of letting go of expectations.
Ultimately, it worked for the story, but her accent took a bit of getting used to.
I bought this because my book club was reading it. We all agreed that we thought it was mediocre at best. The plot got lost and there were so many characters, whose names changed frequently because of the Russian culture's way of handling names, and the author's writing style wasn't strong enough to keep it interesting. The ending just ends, like the author just suddenly stopped writing.
The narrator has an awkward way of reading that makes it really, really boring to listen to. She places emphasis on odd places on the sentence, and her accent detracts from the story rather than enhances it. It feels like when I was in high school and we'd go around the room reading, and that one kid who couldn't read very well would have his turn. It was just painfully stilted.
I love historical fiction and the content of the story transported me. It doesn't warrant five stars in my mind but is worth a read.
The performance of this book nearly ruined it for me. I could hardly listen to it but I'm too cheap to buy the book after using a credit for the Audible version. The narrator has accented English - I have to believe That is purposeful -- but her pronunciation is frequently WRONG and her cadence stilted. At times I wondered if she was reading the sentences for the very first time.
I was pretty disappointed and did not finish the second volume. It was totally about the life of the lady in waiting as the main charater and made Catherine out to be frivolous and unintelligent. Also, the accent of the reader, while I finally got used to it, was not easy to listen to.
Yes and I may buy this one to read, but not the audible format.
Stilted, slow, pauses in wrong locations, just downright painful
The story line seemed interesting, but I just couldn't get past chapter 4
I love fiction that takes you into the past, into another place and time, and this did just that. I love that it was not about Catherine the Great herself but someone who was a part of the history. Very interesting.
The performance was so poor that, despite several tries, I was not able to get past the first section.
The story slowed in the middle. I had to talk myself into finishing it when I had 6 hours left.
Maybe a TV series.
I liked the story, but thought it might be better to write as a series, with 3 parts rather than 1 long book.