This engaging read tells the extraordinary tale of Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia, who inspired by Enlightenment philosophy, was determined to become the embodiment of the benevolent despot. Along the way, she found herself always contending with the deeply ingrained realities of Russian life, including serfdom.
Catherine persevered, and for 34 years, the government, foreign policy, cultural development, and welfare of the Russian people were in her hands. She dealt with domestic rebellion, foreign wars, and the tidal wave of political change and violence churned up by the French Revolution that swept across Europe.
Her reputation depended on the perspective of the speaker; she was praised by Voltaire and condemned by her enemies.
Massie is the Pulitzer Prize winning author of Peter the Great, Nicholas and Alexandra, and the Romanovs. Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman is available for check out from the Palmdale City Library.
For more information on the Featured Book of the Month, contact the Palmdale City Library at 661-267-5600 or online at www.cityofpalmdale.org/library.
(Information via press release from the City of Palmdale.)