The Tsarina’s Legacy

Written by Jennifer Laam
Review by Holly Faur

Veronica Herrera, newly discovered lost daughter of the Romanovs and rightful heir to the throne, travels to Russia to accept the official, if only ceremonial, position as Tsarina. But when she takes a political stand for gay rights and supports an imprisoned artist, tensions rise, and Veronica’s convictions, and relationships, are put to the test.

This is book two from Jennifer Laam, following The Secret Daughter of the Tsar, where we met Veronica and learned about her true identity as the heir to the Russian throne. It’s fun reuniting with the characters, some of them new, and watching as Veronica is welcomed to her beautiful homeland. Woven throughout the story are glimpses back to Prince Grigory Potemkin, the supposed husband of Empress Catherine, as he tries to reconcile his past and build a mosque for the country’s Muslims. Both storylines are done exceedingly well and are rich in the details I’ve come to expect from Laam’s writing. Veronica is a character with heart and a passion for what she believes is right, and Grigory is a humanly flawed character whose love for Catherine sometimes blinds him. While Grigory’s storyline is filled with his intimate lusts and faults, mixed with ambitions, I found Veronica’s weighed heavily on politics and wished for a bit more energy. However, this is only a trivial criticism, and overall the lush history and imaginative theory make this an exceptionally satisfying read.