Synopsis: Bolshoi ballerina Nina Revskaya was a member of Stalin’s cultural elite until betrayal triggered her ingenious escape to the West. Decades later she has decided to auction her famed jewelry collection – including the rare set of amber a Boston professor and an auction house associate believe may hold the key to a long-kept secret. The mystery reaches deep: to the cost of making art and trying to live and love under circumstances of enormous repression.
Cover: It is somehow both mysterious and soothing to look at the faded background of a tree against the white background and falling snow. The clothes on the embracing couple look on the old-fashioned side yet the female’s face itself looks more modern, so I’m not entirely sure what era this novel takes place just by looking at it.
Product: There is something about this book that doesn’t physically feel right. I am fairly certain the cover isn’t as thick as usual and the pages lean towards being a bit translucent. This could be due to the publisher using a new supplier or it could be this potential change was necessary in order to bind all 550-some pages (or rather 540 given there are ten leaves missing from my edition).
Format: This novel is divided into three books, each one shorter than the last, and each chapter begins with an auction item blurb (with the exception of what I’m assuming may be another error as there are two in a row for one chapter and none at all for another).