Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Review: The Lost Souls of Angelkov by Linda Holeman

Publisher: Random House of Canada
Pages: 560
Received: Received from Random House Canada in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: July 3, 2012
Buy From / Buy From

Goodreads Synopsis:

From one of Canada's finest historical novelists, an intricately woven story of revenge, deception, love and redemption set against the turbulent social upheavals of 1860s Russia.

For Antonina, the wife of a wealthy Russian landowner, the world falls apart one cold spring afternoon when her husband takes her little boy, Misha, out riding. Set upon by kidnappers on horseback, the boy is stolen and the count wounded. Beautiful, musical and sheltered, Antonina is at first stunned and grief-stricken, then helpless as the count sickens and dies.

Desperate, and surrounded by serfs and servants unsettled by the collapse of the old order, Antonina turns to Grisha, the estate steward, for help in getting her son back. He is a man of relentless competence and ambition, and she is drawn to his strength, unaware that he is both driven and crippled by secrets he hoped he'd left behind him in the land of his birth, Siberia. In her search for her lost boy, Antonina faces betrayals that are literally murderous, and finds strengths she had no idea she possessed as she wanders the crumbling halls of Angelkov, pitting her wits against people turned erratic and cruel. In the end, her fate, and the fate of her son, hangs on the way love can sometimes transform even the deepest of hatreds.

My Review:

I haven't read a historical book focusing on the time of the Tsar in Russia in quite awhile, so when I was offered the chance to review this book I leapt at it. I was really taken with this cover, it's absolutely gorgeous (I love the colour of it), something that would definitely stop me if I saw it in a store.

This book begins with the child of a Russian Count being kidnapped at the time when Russian serfs are finally freed from the Tsar, but this book is about so much more than just the kidnapping. Right away, readers find out who the kidnappers are and what their plan is, but then things take a turn for the worst for different reasons, and you get to watch as everything slowly unravels itself. 

Holeman takes her readers on an exquisite journey throughout the book, slowly mysteries unravel as you journey through each character's life. Each small event in the present time will take a character back to what brought them to where they are now. Her writing is absolutely beautiful throughout the entire book.

Holeman does a beautiful job of describing the setting and each of the characters in the book. She really brings history to life with her writing. Throughout the book I felt like I was living these characters lives myself.  If you are a fan of historical novels, definitely pick this one up, the length is worth it.


  1. I have this one, and I can't wait to read it. Great review!

  2. Lovely review Andrea! This book sounds so good. I have taken a bit of a break from historical fiction but maybe I just needed a different era to read it. I don't think that I have read any historical novels set in Russia so this would be a nice change of pace (and I have to admit the fact that the author is Canadian and the cover is so beautiful doesn't hurt either)!



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