A Russian grand duchess and an English journalist. Linked by one of the world’s greatest mysteries…
Love. Guilt. Heartbreak.
Russia is on the brink of collapse, and the Romanov family faces a terrifyingly uncertain future. Grand Duchess Tatiana has fallen in love with cavalry officer Dmitri, but events take a catastrophic turn, placing their romance – and their lives – in danger…
Kitty Fisher escapes to her great-grandfather’s remote cabin in America, after a devastating revelation makes her flee London. There, on the shores of Lake Akanabee, she discovers the spectacular jewelled pendant that will lead her to a long-buried family secret…
I'm both honoured and excited to be part of the blog tour for Gill Paul's latest novel, 'The Secret Wife', today! Last year I was introduced to this author when I was invited to take part in the blog tour for another one of her books, 'No Place for a Lady' (click HERE to read my review). I thoroughly enjoyed this historical fiction read and was already curious to see what Gill would treat us to next. 'The Secret Wife' was released by Avon on August 25th and promised to be a captivating story about the Russian Romanov family, a family I've always been fascinated by, so I really hoped I'd end up enjoying the novel as much as I did the previous one by this author!
'The Secret Wife' focuses on two different storylines: in 2016, Kitty Fisher decides to run away from London after she discovers her husband has been cheating on her, and ends up in the USA, in a cabin she's inherited from her great-grandfather. She decides to focus on making the cabin a place to live again, anything to get her mind off what has happened. Roughly 100 years earlier Russian soldier Dmitri ends up in hospital where he meets Grand Duchess Tatiana, one of the Romanov daughters. The two fall for each other but their love doesn't seem meant to be as war and other things keep getting in the way. It isn't until Kitty ends up in that abandoned cabin that she stumbles upon a family secret, one that will change things forever.
Sometimes I tend to forget how good historical fiction can be, but then I'm provided with the opportunity to read another novel by author Gill Paul and I'm immediately reminded how great this genre actually is. 'The Secret Wife' is set over the span of approximately 100 years and links our modern day and age to an eventful period in the past in an intriguing and clever way. The book has two separate storylines; one set in early 1900s Russia and the other set in the here and now. I liked both storylines (even though I have to admit it took me quite a bit of time to really get into it) and the characters taking on a central role in them such as Kitty, Tatiana and Dmitri. I loved discovering more about them and their lives and joining them to discover what would eventually happen to them.
I've personally always been fascinated by the Russian Romanov family and I found myself wanting to do some more research while I was reading this novel. I was blown away by how accurate this novel actually is; it immediately became clear Gill Paul did a lot of research and decided to stay really close to reality. Her descriptions and writing style are powerful, resulting in me almost feeling as if I was transported to Russia and standing next to Tatiana and Dmitri. While this is quite a long read, I'd definitely recommend it to any historical fiction fan; Gill Paul won't disappoint. 'The Secret Wife' is a wonderful and enthralling combination of fact and fiction, resulting in a captivating love story that will stay with me for time to come.