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The author s prose is heavy on telling, largely because she packs it with an impressive amount of Romanov and Russian history. The romantic dimension of this novel sparkles when it appears and Dunlap s treatment of Anastasia s family is full and tender, but as the years pass and revolution appears on the horizon, the story grows expectedly bleak.

Dunlap persuasively inhabits the thoughts and emotions of her embattled protagonist; her magnetic reimagining of Anastasia s story has the potential to reach a broad audience.

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Ages 12 up. Listen to the Wind. The Academie.

Susanne Dunlap. Susanne Dunlap is an American author well known for her historical fiction. The musical world's loss is the literary world's gain. Susanne weaves a compelling and fascinating story which clearly mirrors her love for the craft of writing as well as all things historical. Her first foray into writing for the young adult market was The Musician's Daughter , a story that combines her deep depth of knowledge of music with her love of conveying another world to the reader.

Anastasia's Secret is her second novel for the YA audience and transports the reader into the time of the Russian revolution; and the mystery of the Romanov family and their demise. Our Lists. View all online retailers. The life of a Russian princess rests in the hands of her secret love Related titles. Turtles All the Way Down.

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The Sun is also a Star. Love, Simon. Undercover Princess.

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Her brother, Alexei, is dealing with the life-threatening disease of hemophilia, which has no known cure. Her older sisters are dealing with the likes of men and society, while she's stuck in a time-warp of 'little girl' proportions. Tsar Nicholas the Second, her father, is worrying about a revolution going on in Russia, all the while watching his wife become entranced by the workings of 'holy man' Grigory Rusputin.

Anastasia's secret

Behind the scenes, a friendship with a soldier named Sasha also threatens to shatter the fragile piece of the family And then war is imminent. Battle lines are drawn, and the people of Russia are ready to take up arms. Sasha and Anastasia's relationship, which is barely able to be kept, is laced with feelings of something more. Grigory's influence on Alexandra and her son, Alexei, is growing tighter, and the governing of the country is becoming harder and harder to maintain.

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How is a girl supposed to grow up knowing the harshness of war, when she only knows what goes on in her own little world of royalty? The characters that make up the pages of a historical novel are the hardest part to work out. History shows us a factual face, personal accounts give us a general personality, and rarely, we have diaries or journals that show the true mind of the figure. Anastasia had the first two down, and thus she's been pictured as a tom-boy with a lot of spunk and a mindset unlike the rest of her family.

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I always loved her general personality, and thus I'm really picky about how people depict her. Dunlap gives her a fresh face, keeping her rambunctious attitude and coupling it with the thought processes of a teenage girl on the brink of adulthood when she just isn't ready for it. The depth showed great apt for characterization. Anastasia constantly worries about things that we all can relate to, such as her relationship with Sasha, and things that we can never imagine, like the Bolshevik uprising in Russia.

Her family is also depicted stunningly, with great personalities that are flexible yet true to what history tells us. Sasha didn't appear much, which disheartened me.