As the ‘Funeral Bride,’ Alexandra of Hesse-Darmstadt marries Tsar Nicholas II only a week after the premature death of his father, Tsar Alexander III.
Already dismissed out of hand by the court, Alexandra has to further contend with the continuing ambition of her mother-in-law, the Dowager-Empress Minnie, who has no intention of ceding imperial precedence to the new Empress or of giving up one inch of her power and influence over her emotionally-dependent son, the new Tsar.
Nevertheless, Empress Alexandra is determined to stamp her authority on Russia as a whole and on Nicholas in particular, but to do so she must produce an heir. Having given birth to daughter after daughter after daughter, she becomes desperate and turns to the first of her mystical advisors, Msgr. Philippe, who persuades her, among other things, that she is invisible.
And then comes the moment of her greatest triumph with the birth of her son and the heir to the throne of all the Russias, the Tsarevich Alexei.
All four volumes are (planned) as follows:
1. ‘The Funeral Bride’ 1884-1894 – published November 2015
2. ‘The Empress of Tears’ 1895-1904 – published March 2016
3. ‘The Pride of Eagles’ 1905-1914 – to be published by November 2016
4. ‘No Greater Crown’ 1914-1918 – to be published by April 2017