Queen of Someday (The Stolen Empire #1)
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Imperial Court holds dangers like nothing Sophie has ever faced before. In the heart of St. Petersburg, surviving means navigating the political, romantic, and religious demands of the bitter Empress Elizabeth and her handsome, but sadistic nephew, Peter. Determined to save her impoverished family—and herself—Sophie vows to do whatever is necessary to thrive in her new surroundings. But an attempt on her life and an unexpected attraction threatens to derail her plans.
Alone in a new and dangerous world, learning who to trust and who to charm may mean the difference between becoming queen and being sent home in shame to marry her lecherous uncle. With traitors and murderers lurking around every corner, her very life hangs in the balance. Betrothed to one man but falling in love with another, Sophie will need to decide how much she’s willing to sacrifice in order to become the empress she is destined to be.
In a battle for the soul of a nation, will love or destiny reign supreme?
Praise for Queen of Someday from School Library Journal:
Gr 9 Up–Upon her arrival at the Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg, Princess Sophie of… Anhalt-Zerbst immediately begins her quest for the hand of Grand Duke Peter, heir to the Russian throne. Marrying the prince will secure her family’s lands and titles and save her from an unwanted marriage to her uncle. Surrounded on all sides with potential enemies, lovers, and political allies, Sophie struggles to reconcile her duties with her desires. This historical fiction tale provides a compelling, if fanciful look at the early years of Catherine the Great. A brief author’s note outlines the liberties taken with the story. An entertaining, racy read that will spark an interest in the history of Catherine the Great, about whom not much has been written for this age group previously.
–“Sara Saxton, Wasilla Public Library, AK” Copyright 2014 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission. School Library Journal (10/01/2014)
Queen of Someday Book Club Reading Guide
1. For the person who chose this book: What made you want to read it? What made you suggest it to the group for discussion? Did it live up to your expectations? Why or why not?
2. How do you think it might have been different if another character was telling the story?
3. How would you describe Sophie’s relationship with her mother? How do you think that relationship impacts Johanna’s desire to see her daughter on the throne?
4. Talk about the time period in which the story is set. How well does the author convey the era? Did you have a sense of whether or not the author remained true to the events, social structures and political events of the time period?
5. Did you know anything about Catherine the Great before you read this book? If so, did you learn anything new? If not, did you come away with a greater understanding of what this particular time and place in history was actually like?
6. What was the most surprising/disturbing custom from that period? Do you think that was accurate to the time period?
7. Compare this book to other works of historical fiction your group has read. Is it similar to any of them? Did you like it more or less than other books you’ve read? What do you think will be your lasting impression of the book?
8. Why do you suppose works of historical fiction are so popular with readers? What appeals to you the most about these types of books?
9. There are three viable romantic interests in this story, of those relationships, which felt the most powerful to you, and why? Were you pleased with how the relationships progressed?
10. What did you like or dislike about the book that hasn’t been discussed already? Were you glad you read this book? Would you recommend it to a friend? Do you want to read more work by this author?