Rasputin by Douglas Smith
Faith, Power, and the Twilight of the Romanovs

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Everyone knows the story...The reality as set out by Smith is, of course, less sensational and rather more interesting.
-Guardian

Synopsis

On the centenary of the death of Rasputin comes a definitive biography that will dramatically change our understanding of this fascinating figure

A hundred years after his murder, Rasputin continues to excite the popular imagination as the personification of evil. Numerous biographies, novels, and films recount his mysterious rise to power as Nicholas and Alexandra's confidant and the guardian of the sickly heir to the Russian throne. His debauchery and sinister political influence are the stuff of legend, and the downfall of the Romanov dynasty was laid at his feet.

But as the prizewinning historian Douglas Smith shows, the true story of Rasputin's life and death has remained shrouded in myth. A major new work that combines probing scholarship and powerful storytelling, Rasputin separates fact from fiction to reveal the real life of one of history's most alluring figures. Drawing on a wealth of forgotten documents from archives in seven countries, Smith presents Rasputin in all his complexity--man of God, voice of peace, loyal subject, adulterer, drunkard. Rasputin is not just a definitive biography of an extraordinary and legendary man but a fascinating portrait of the twilight of imperial Russia as it lurched toward catastrophe.

 

About Douglas Smith

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Douglas Smith is an award-winning historian and translator and the author of three previous books on Russia. Before becoming a historian, he worked for the U. S. State Department in the Soviet Union and as a Russian affairs analyst for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Munich. He lives in Seattle with his wife and two children.
 
Published November 22, 2016 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 832 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Travel. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Rasputin
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on Oct 27 2016

Smith’s depravity-laden history of turn-of-the-20th-century Russia hinges on his insightful readings of myth and motive, and their tragic consequences.

Read Full Review of Rasputin: Faith, Power, and t... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Rodric Braithwaite on Nov 06 2016

Everyone knows the story...The reality as set out by Smith is, of course, less sensational and rather more interesting.

Read Full Review of Rasputin: Faith, Power, and t... | See more reviews from Guardian

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