Our reviews of
Eye Of The Red Tsar by Sam Eastland
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It is the time of the Great Terror. Inspector Pekkala - known as the Emerald Eye - was the most famous detective in all of Russia. He was the favourite of the Tsar. Now he is the prisoner of the men he once hunted.
Like millions of others, he has been sent to the gulags in Siberia and, as far as the rest of the world is concerned, he is as good as dead. But a reprieve comes when he is summoned by Stalin himself to investigate a crime. His mission - to uncover the men who really killed the Tsar and his family, and to locate the Tsar's treasure. The reward for success will be his friend and the chance to reunite with a woman he would have married if the Revolution had not torn them apart. The price of failure - death.
Set against the backdrop of the paranoid and brutal country that Russia became under the rule of Stalin, Eye of the Red Tsar
Reviewed: December 2009
I really enjoyed this well constructed, fast paced, fun but fact filled crime thriller. For the real history concerning the murder of the Romanovs you will of course, need to consult something along the lines of Robert K Massie's wonderful Nicholas and Alexandra, but for all that this is fictional, you will never-the-less enjoy the period setting, the Russian flavour, and the author's well researched observations on the tsar's character. The charismatic nature of Inspector Pekkala makes me long for more books in this series, if indeed it is to become a series. I do hope so, because the book has really got something; the writing is lively and intelligent, and although Eastland is playing with the facts in order to create an engrossing mystery, he is obviously a man with an excellent grasp of the history of the time.
Reviewed: December 2009
Another terrific light read – unlike Annette, who likes to approach the Christmas flurry with a few lighter reads, I find that January suits my temperament much better for this type of reading. This is a new and refreshing take on the deaths of the Romanov family; Inspector Pekkala, who was once the most famous detective in Russia, and confidante of the Tsar, was sent to the gulags in Siberia at the beginning of the revolution. Years later, he has his chance for a reprieve when he is summoned by Stalin to find out exactly who killed the Tsar and his family, and to locate the Romanov treasure. Success means he will gain his freedom, but failure means death. I hope Eastland is hard at work on another book.