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Grigory Efimovich Rasputindrinker, thief, womanizerarrived in St. Petersburg in 1903 as if from the medieval past . . . tattered, black-clad, muttering. By the time of his sensational murder thirteen years later, the peasant was the ”beloved Friend” of Czar Nicholas and Empress Alexandra, with a seemingly supernatural power to stop the bleeding attacks of their hemophiliac son, Alexis. How could it have happened? As on society lady of the time asked, How could so pitiful a wretch throw so vast a shadow?”Drawing on confidential police reports, cabinet meeting memos, and many documents only now available, Moynahan sheds new light on Rasputin's life and disputes some of the widely held details of his death. The Washington Post Book World called the book balanced and well-researched” hailed its shrewd analysis of the ways in which Rasputin's manipulative abilities meshed with the emotional needs of isolated, superstitious members of czarist aristocracy. It is an unforgettable portrait of an age as well as of a man.
About the Author
Brian Moynahan was a foreign correspondent and European editor with the London Sunday Times. He has traveled frequently to Russia and is the author of three previous books on Russian history: Claws of the Bear, Comrades, and The Russian Century.