[A] piercing portrait of an extraordinary woman who was both a Russian princess and a communist
... a life of eccentricity and excess; of loss and exile; of courage, and of cruelty that reverberated down the generations. Red Princess is a small memorial to all the lives dislodged by the shifting sands of modern history
... anyone reading about her sizzling charm, guts and literary gifts can't help thinking it would have been fun to know her
From the Same Author
Sofka Zinovieff had fallen in love with Greece as a student, but little suspected that years later she would return for good with an expatriate Greek husband and two young daughters. This book is a wonderfully fresh, funny and inquiring account of her first year as an Athenian. The whole family have to get to grips with their new life and identities: the children start school and tackle a new language, and Sofka’s husband, Vassilis, comes home after half a lifetime away. Meanwhile, Sofka resolves to get to know her new city and become a Greek citizen, which turns out to be a process of Byzantine complexity. As the months go by, Sofka’s discovers how memories of Athens’ past haunt its present in its music, poetry and history. She also learns about the difficult art of catching a taxi, the importance of smoking, the unimportance of time-keeping, and how to get your Christmas piglet cooked at the baker’s.