Over and above Anastasia's own story which appeared a few years ago, there has been little written about the ill-fated imperial Romanovs which may assure a certain interest for this retelling of their tragic history. Otherwise the book is a rather sketchy if not superficial account. Frankland, a British historian, begins his story with he marriage of the gentle, indecisive, fatalistic Nicholas to the beautiful, shy, somewhat omber and increasingly mystical Alix. If Nicholas, like Louis XVI, was ultimately to be he casualty of a revolution, he was also the victim of a more authoritative wife- and in this case Alix, under the influence of Rasputin, was most responsible for his alienation from his people. Concentrated on the tragedy itself, this follows the imperial family after he revolution was touched off, Rasputin was killed, and the Tsar abdicated (a ""hopeless asco"" since nothing was safeguarded), attends them during their captivity in Siberia, to he fatal shooting in The House of Special Purpose. It is, all in all, a rather lackluster account- unexpected as this may be considering the natural assets and dramatic associations of this story.