When Fabergé specialist Assia Wynfield learns of the discovery of a long-lost Fabergé egg made for the Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna, daughter of the last Tsar of Russia, she appears to be the only person with misgivings. On travelling to St. Petersburg to see the egg, Assia moves among Russia’s new rich but finds herself pulled back into a family past she would rather forget. With news that a friend is missing, Assia starts to dig deeper. But does she really want the answers to the questions she is asking? Set in today’s glamorous world of Russian art with glimpses into the lives of the last Romanovs as their empire crumbled in the wake of the Russian Revolution, Olga’s Egg is an enthralling tale of love, family secrets and the artistic treasures that conceal them.
What a gorgeous book. Admittedly, I was sold on this book in the first place purely on the cover design alone. Then I read the blurb, and I just knew I couldn't let this one pass by. And I'm so happy I didn't. 'Olga's Egg' is incredibly rich in detail and historical research. The love and passion for (Imperial) Russia, it's art and architecture is so tangible I could easily imagine myself walking around in St. Petersburg, soaking it all in.
It took me a couple of chapters to find my bearing in this story. In those first pages a lot of characters are introduced with glimpses of their stories, both past and present, and it's a bit confusing as to where the story is going. Once the grand discovery of a long-lost Fabergé egg is made, however, you're catapulted into this world of money, power, art and luxury. Assia as a main character isn't easy to relate to. She's dealing with a difficult past and doesn't open herself up easily, and to me that included us as readers as well. But even though I didn't feel a particularly close connection to the lead, the story itself captivated me and took me along on this beautiful, Imperial, roller coaster.
The art and mystery in this book stayed with me every time I closed the book - I just had to keep reading to learn more about the art and the history, to figure all the puzzle pieces out. Sophie Law described everything in such glorious detail, taking her time to really set the scene and not rushing the different elements to this story. Absolutely loved it. Now please excuse me while I look up everything I can find on Fabergé and watch the 1997 animation movie "Anastasia".
ABOUT THE AUTOR. Sophie Law was born in London in 1981 and studied at Oxford University and the School of Slavonic and East European Studies. She began her career as a Russian art expert at Bonhams in 2006. After a number of years heading the Russian department and as a UK Board Director at Bonhams, she now acts as a consultant specialist. She lives with her husband and daughter in Oxford.