The Lost Crown

Written by Sarah Miller
Review by Nancy Castaldo

Sarah Miller’s well-researched novel The Lost Crown gives beautiful, honest voices to the teen daughters of Tsar Nicholas II in the years of their imprisonment following his abdication. Faithful Tatiana, thoughtful Olga, comforting Maria, and spunky Anastasia are brought to life within the pages of this moving young adult novel. Knowing the fate of these girls does not make this an easy read, but certainly worthwhile. I began reading the book in the evening and it did not leave my head until I finished it the next morning. Each chapter is told in alternating voices with a small photo of each narrator on the chapter’s first page.

Readers may find themselves comparing these historic events to recent headlines. As exile options dwindle for deposed leaders, many of them struggle to hold on to their sovereignty. Tsar Nicholas’ daughters, once privileged and protected, lived under house arrest for years before meeting their brutal fate. Bewildered by the growing hatred towards them, Sarah Miller portrays the life the girls lived behind painted windows and unlocked doors.

A thorough bibliography follows to provide readers with further information about this period of Russian history.