The Russian Concubine
|Series:||Russian Concubine Ser.|
In a city full of thieves and Communists, danger and death, spirited young Lydia Ivanova has lived a hard life. Always looking over her shoulder, the sixteen-year-old must steal to feed herself and her mother, Valentina, who numbered among the Russian elite until Bolsheviks murdered most of them, including her husband. As exiles, Lydia and Valentina have learned to survive in a foreign land.
Often, Lydia steals away to meet with the handsome young freedom fighter Chang An Lo. But they face danger: Chiang Kai Shek's troops are headed toward Junchow to kill Reds like Chang, who has in his possession the jewels of a tsarina, meant as a gift for the despot's wife. The young pair's all-consuming love can only bring shame and peril upon them, from both sides. Those in power will do anything to quell it. But Lydia and Chang are powerless to end it.
A sweeping novel set in war-torn China, with a star-crossed love story at its centre.
'Wonderful . . . a gripping love story . . . A hugely ambitious and atmospheric epic novel' Kate Mosse, author of LABYRINTH 'The Russian Concubine is a great story of love, loss and conflicting loyalties in a fascinatingly precarious moment of history. The wonderfully drawn and all-too-human characters struggle to survive in a world of danger and bewildering change, constantly choosing whether to embrace the past or to escape it, caught between cultures' Diana Gabaldon, author of the Outlander series 'A pulse-racing romance . . . breathtakingly good' Marie Claire '[an] achingly beautiful epic' New Woman 'Whether you like romance, history, action or adventure, this highly accomplished, sweeping epic is a perfect winter read . . . Escapism at its best, this novel brilliantly captures the sights, sounds and atmosphere of early twentieth-century Russia and China' Glamour 'A rollicking good read, with a fast-moving plot and oodles of colourful characters and evocative locations. The best thing about it, however, is Lydia . . . a heroine that one hopes to meet for more adventures in the future' Telegraph 'A vivid story . . . the characters are brilliantly drawn' Sunday Express 'If books were food this would be a Mars bar' The Times 'Extraordinarily lush' Richard Russo, author of The Bridge of Sighs 'A splendid book . . . I adored it. A fabulous, very affecting love story . . . full of wonderful characters' Sarah Harrison 'Totally compelling . . . [and] so assured for a first novel' Boyd Hilton 'Atmospheric and gripping' Sainsbury's Magazine 'A great read' Helen Dunning 'Wonderful' Big Issue 'Great fun . . . [An] epic romantic adventure on a grand scale . . . the characters are brilliantly drawn' International Express
Kate Furnivall lives in Devon and was born in Wales. This is her first novel. The Russian Concubine is based on her mother's life.