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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Quest for a Czar
A new Romanov Czar on the throne of Russia..... well sometimes one wonders whether that would be indeed a good idea if one takes into account what the "so-called red Czars" and the "so-called democratic Czars" make out of Russia.
Steven Berry based his thriller on the present state of Russia, the actual disputes in the Romananov family over the question of the...
Published on 23 Jan 2006 by Amelrode

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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Finding the new Tsar
Miles Lord is walking through Moscow after lunch when all of a sudden assassins start shooting and kill his Russian colleague. Only inventiveness and sheer luck prevent him from being shot as well. The Russian people have decided that they want to reinstate the Tsar and Lord is working for an American law firm that is helping one of the Romanov contenders for the throne...
Published on 14 Oct 2005 by Linda Oskam


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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Finding the new Tsar, 14 Oct 2005
By 
Linda Oskam "dutch-traveller" (Amsterdam Netherlands) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
Miles Lord is walking through Moscow after lunch when all of a sudden assassins start shooting and kill his Russian colleague. Only inventiveness and sheer luck prevent him from being shot as well. The Russian people have decided that they want to reinstate the Tsar and Lord is working for an American law firm that is helping one of the Romanov contenders for the throne. But apparently he has stumbled onto something important because the killers keep trying to murder him. He wants to get to the bottom of it all and he teams up with Akilina, a Russian acrobat. Together they are the Raven and the Eagle, who, according to one of Rasputin's prophecies, will reinstall the Romanov's on the Russian throne. In the end they succeed, but before that they travel halfway over the world and a lot of people are killed in the process.
The author has very obviously studied the style of Dan Brown, but I liked Brown better, even tohugh it is difficult to say why. A decent read while on holiday, even though the endless chases are tiring at times. I was also surprised by the fact that it takes Lord, who seems to be quite bright, such a long time to work out who the villain is behind it all. The historical background is actually quite adequate, which means that the reader can get a good insight into the end of the Romanovs and the beginning of the Communist rule.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Quest for a Czar, 23 Jan 2006
By 
Amelrode (Vilvoorde) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
A new Romanov Czar on the throne of Russia..... well sometimes one wonders whether that would be indeed a good idea if one takes into account what the "so-called red Czars" and the "so-called democratic Czars" make out of Russia.
Steven Berry based his thriller on the present state of Russia, the actual disputes in the Romananov family over the question of the headship of the House, the prophecies of Rasputin and most of all on the eternal mystery what has happend to the last Imperial Family. All this is a perfect background for this action filled thriller which indeed grabs the readers attention right from the start. The story develops quickly, the personalities are convincing and the plot intriguing. It was a page turner for me and I wanted to know what happens next. So never a dull moment.
I agree with the previous reviewer that the chases were a bit too much. I feel that certain aspects a bit far fetched. That he turned Prince Felix Juppussov into the "hero" who engeneered the long-term survival of the the Imperial Famnily was a bit difficult to stomach but it was cleverly done.
All in all, a book I enjoyed reading as it stimulates one' s phantasy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good pseudohistorical thriller, 13 Aug 2007
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
"The Da Vinci Code" made popular the pseudohistorical thriller genre. Steve Berry's "The Romanov Prophecy" is set in the near future in a Russia that has elected to bring back the tsar. It looks as if a distant relative to tsar Nicholas II is about to get elected when Miles Lord, an african american lawyer uncovers some papers, including a prophecy by Rasputin, and a letter from Lenin. Before long, Lord is hunted by russian hitmen and, with the help of a beautiful Russian acrobat, needs to find out why, and stop the conspiracy that is about to elect a tsar that will be a puppet for the mafia and international business interests.

In reality, bringing back the tsar may not seem like a good idea, but the story is still interesting. The pace is quick most of the time and the book offers lots of interesting alternate history, albeit (like the Da Vinci Code) based on old ideas.

This is the first book by Steve Berry that I've read and I will probably check out his other books.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Skipping & jumping, running & shooting, all in vain, 27 Jun 2007
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
Russia is facing chaos and by referendum has chosen to bring back the reign of the Tsar. The black American lawyer Miles Lord is there to dig in the archives and lobby for one of the contenders. But Lord starts to suspect that not all of the original Romanovs were killed by the communists, and there the story takes off.

The reader is immediately thrown into an action scene where two bad guys tries to kill the lawyer, and everything afterwards is along this route. The story includes sadistic villains, perky blond acrobats from the Moscow Circus and conspiring businessmen. The main character, Lord, knows everything, or at least all that's needed in every situation. And what he doesn't know, he'll learn fast - for instance acrobatics from the slim, vibrant, blonde circus princess.

Steve Berry seems to have such a Dan brown-complex that one might ask if he's deliberately trying to make the characters as one-dimensional as possible. You know a stereotype when you see it, in this plot as soon as a new person emerges. Good Russians are slim history professors with eagle-beak noses and aristocratic cheekbones. Bad Russians are broad shouldered, has low hairlines and are compared to Cro Magnon untermenschen. Naturally, you can immediately spot a "goodie" or a "badie" on how reliable their eyes are.

The heroes are stoically hard yet resolute and never yields an inch. When one of the bad guys dies the true action hero complains about the loss of a favourite dog:

"`A shame about the dog,' Lord said.

`I loved that animal.' Thorn turned toward him. `But it's over now. The choice has been made.'

And in that moment, illuminated in the glow of a quarter moon, within a hardened face and unblinking eyes, Miles Lord saw the future of Russia."

Every now and then Berry inserts a bit of history and then rapidly returns to the skipping and the jumping, the running and the shooting. Every time with the same miraculous outcome.

The story always has to make room for the action. No boring scenes are allowed to interrupt the action, logic and probability is sacrificed for the greater good of getting to the next fighting scene. Logical holes are excused by a Rasputin prophecy, which supernaturally steers the heroes in the right direction.

That a black man in the Russian countryside is as inconspicuous as a redneck in Watts doesn't concern the writer. The hero knows all languages he needs, including schwyzerdütsch (Swiss German). He immediately finds what he's looking for in small Russian towns as well as in the Appalachian boondocks and San Francisco. Tracked down by evil Russians wherever he is in the world, yet he always miraculously escapes, hallelujah!

Steve Berry has been compared to John Le Carré. Ian Fleming would have been nearer the truth, as this is James Bond without the redeeming humour. A new, invincible, superhero is born. Why not write a whole series of books about the peerless Miles Lord, just as Clancy has done with Jack Ryan? Or not.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Romanov Prophecy - Steve Berry, 12 April 2008
By 
Matthew Turner "loyalroyal" (Reading, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a good, solid thriller, definitely worthy of 4 stars. Not 5, though, as it is not perfect. There is plenty of action as you'd expect in a Steve Berry novel. I am a bit of a fan of Berry and of the 4 novels (he's written 6) I've read so far from him this was the most enjoyable, and not quite so incredulous as the others.

The protagonist, Miles Lord, is a worthy hero and a likable enough person. He does have an uncanny knack of getting out of deep trouble with surprising regularity. As others have noted the regularity of chase scenes and escapes from certain death are a bit repetitive and unbelievable, and I would agree with that to an extent. Nevertheless such scenes are done well- full of action and, sometimes, gripping. However, the escape from the gorillas was a bit too incredulous. Lord is a bright lawyer who had an unhappy relationship with his dead preacher father - this theme crops up quite often in the novel, and I'm not quite sure how relevant it was to the story, possibly it makes Lord more determined to succeed in unravelling Rasputin's prophecy and the lost Romanov heir. Lord is the perfect opposite of his boss, Taylor Hayes. The other hero, Michael Thorn, is also the exact opposite of Hayes - Hayes hunts animals, Thorn keeps dogs, Hayes is avaricious and ambitious, Thorn is happy with his quiet family life.

The story itself is intriguing, based on Rasputin's prophecy of the re-emergence of the Russian monarchy. In the novel, Russia has voted to restore the monarchy and the Tsarist Commission is entrusted with filling the vacant throne with claimants descended from the former imperial family. There is of course political intrigue in the shape of the Secret Chancellery, working for the election of Stefan Baklanov as a puppet ruler, through whom the Chancellery can control Russia. The notion of Russia restoring tsarism might perhaps be a bit far-fetched today, but not quite so much when Berry first wrote the book in 1996. Lord is charged with searching through the archives for anything that could impugn Baklanov's claim to the crown - this quickly pushes Lord on to the trail of an 80 year-old plot surrounding the last Tsar, Nicholas II, and his family.

Some of the historical aspects of the book are a bit suspect, such as the explanation of the workings of the succession law of 1797 of Paul I. It did not bar females completely. Females could succeed if the male line became extinct. Also some of the marriages made by the modern Romanovs, revealed fictionally in the book, probably would have not been accepted as dynastic as spouses had to be of equal (i.e royal or imperial) birth.

All in all fans of Berry will not be disappointed and I'd recommend newcomers to the author to start off with this novel. Recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Compelling Read, 8 Jan 2008
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Steve Berry lives on the Georgia coast in Camden County. He's a lawyer who, for twenty-five years, has helped people both in and out of the courtroom.

Until fairly recently I had not read any of Steve Berry's books and now I have read them all up to date. That is how good I rate them personally. I cannot say that anyone else will rate them so highly but I think I can say that they will get an enjoyable read from whichever of the author's books they may decide to read.

It doesn't take a genius to work out that this novel has connections with Russia and the story begins ten months after Tsar Nicholas II's reign was brutally cut short by the revolution. The tsar and his immediate family are held captive by the Bolsheviks, but even at this stage Nicholas dares to hope that sense will prevail. But his dreams are shattered when the whole Romanov family including himself are callously executed.

The book moves forward to present day Russia and Atlanta lawyer Miles Lord, well versed in the country's history, is delighted to be in Moscow at a momentous event. The communist regime has floundered and the Russian people have voted to bring back the monarchy. But is anything that simple. Miles has been called in to perform a background check on the Tsarist candidate, supposedly chosen from the distant relatives of Nicholas II and favored by a group of Western businessmen. But research quickly becomes the least of Miles's problems when he is almost killed by gunmen on a city plaza. What has he let himself in for and how is he going to get out of it . . .
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4.0 out of 5 stars A 21st CENTURY TSAR..., 17 Sep 2007
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
This is an interesting and enjoyable work of fiction. As with all of the author's works, there is a historical thread that runs through it. Here, the Russian people, sick of its weak post-communist governments, have boldly decided that is time to restore the Romanovs to the throne. Yes, it is time to bring back the tsar.

Having made this monumental decision, the Russians, through a duly selected Tsar Commission, are going to choose their tsar from the distant blood relatives of Nicholas II, the last Romanov to so rule, he and his family having been massacred in 1918. American lawyers, Miles Lord and his boss, Taylor Hayes, are in Russia as advisors to the Tsar Commission, which is charged with interviewing claimants for the throne. The leading contender for selection by the Commission is Stefan Baklanov. Miles Lord is charged with doing a background check on Baklanov, who has connections with many western businesses, many of which are clients of his law firm, to ensure that there is nothing that will impugn his claim to the throne.

In his search, Lord discovers a cryptic prophecy by Rasputin that would seem to imply that the world had not seen the last of the Romanovs. Tantalizing clues in archival material spur Lord to discover more. It seems that there may be a well-guarded historical secret that has the potential to challenge and even derail Baklanov's claim. Many will stop at nothing to keep it from being discovered, which is why Miles Lord now finds himself targeted for death. As he races around Russia, gathering bits of information here and there, the body count mounts with Lord only narrowly avoiding a meeting with the grim reaper. It is, however, only a matter of time before the Romanov prophecy is fulfilled.

This is another action packed page turner by the author. There are many twists and turns in this plot driven book, although it falls somewhat short in terms of character development. Still, the historical details are well-researched. Those who like historical thrillers will find much to enjoy in this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling Reading, 25 July 2007
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Mass Market Paperback)
Steve Berry lives on the Georgia coast in Camden County. He's a lawyer who, for twenty-five years, has helped people both in and out of the courtroom.

Until fairly recently I had not read any of Steve Berry's books and now I have read them all up to date. That is how good I rate them personally. I cannot say that anyone else will rate them so highly but I think I can say that they will get an enjoyable read from whichever of the author's books they may decide to read.

It doesn't take a genius to work out that this novel has connections with Russia and the story begins ten months after Tsar Nicholas II's reign was brutally cut short by the revolution. The tsar and his immediate family are held captive by the Bolsheviks, but even at this stage Nicholas dares to hope that sense will prevail. But his dreams are shattered when the whole Romanov family including himself are callously executed.

The book moves forward to present day Russia and Atlanta lawyer Miles Lord, well versed in the country's history, is delighted to be in Moscow at a momentous event. The communist regime has floundered and the Russian people have voted to bring back the monarchy. But is anything that simple. Miles has been called in to perform a background check on the Tsarist candidate, supposedly chosen from the distant relatives of Nicholas II and favored by a group of Western businessmen. But research quickly becomes the least of Miles's problems when he is almost killed by gunmen on a city plaza. What has he let himself in for and how is he going to get out of it . . .
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Quest for a Czar, 27 May 2008
By 
Amelrode (Vilvoorde) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Romanov Prophecy (Paperback)
A new Romanov Czar on the throne of Russia..... well sometimes one wonders whether that would be indeed a good idea if one takes into account what the "so-called red Czars" and the "so-called democratic Czars" make out of Russia.

Steven Berry based his thriller on the present state of Russia, the actual disputes in the Romananov family over the question of the headship of the House, the prophecies of Rasputin and most of all on the eternal mystery what has happend to the last Imperial Family. All this is a perfect background for this action filled thriller which indeed grabs the readers attention right from the start. The story develops quickly, the personalities are convincing and the plot intriguing. It was a page turner for me and I wanted to know what happens next. So never a dull moment.

I agree with the previous reviewer that the chases were a bit too much. I feel that certain aspects a bit far fetched. That he turned Prince Felix Juppussov into the "hero" who engeneered the long-term survival of the the Imperial Famnily was a bit difficult to stomach but it was cleverly done.

All in all, a book I enjoyed reading as it stimulates one' s phantasy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Quest for a Czar, 16 Jan 2008
By 
Amelrode (Vilvoorde) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
A new Romanov Czar on the throne of Russia..... well sometimes one wonders whether that would be indeed a good idea if one takes into account what the "so-called red Czars" and the "so-called democratic Czars" make out of Russia.
Steven Berry based his thriller on the present state of Russia, the actual disputes in the Romananov family over the question of the headship of the House, the prophecies of Rasputin and most of all on the eternal mystery what has happend to the last Imperial Family. All this is a perfect background for this action filled thriller which indeed grabs the readers attention right from the start. The story develops quickly, the personalities are convincing and the plot intriguing. It was a page turner for me and I wanted to know what happens next. So never a dull moment.

I feel that the chases were a bit too much and that certain aspects were a bit far fetched. That he turned Prince Felix Juppussov into the "hero" who engeneered the long-term survival of the the Imperial Famnily was a bit difficult to stomach but it was cleverly done.

All in all, a book I enjoyed reading as it stimulates one' s phantasy
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The Romanov Prophecy
The Romanov Prophecy by Steve Berry (Mass Market Paperback - 1 April 2005)
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