My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What do Sherlock Holmes and the Russian Revolution have in common? Until Rasputin’s Revenge was published, they had nothing in common. John Lescroart, better known for his Dismas Hardy legal series, brings them together in a compelling tale of murder and intrigue set in St. Petersburg during the first world war and the days leading up to the revolution. A series of murders, the victims dear to Tsar Nicholas, has taken place in a matter of days, and the Tsarina has summoned Auguste Lupa and his colleague Jules Giraud to the Winter Palace. They soon come to the realization that if they can’t stop the killings, Nicholas may very well sue for peace and desert that allies. What ensues is a murder mystery involving the perils of court intrigue and international politics, played out by a cast of fascinating, sharply drawn characters. There are convolutions aplenty, once “the game is afoot”, and while some of the outcomes are questionable in terms of credibility, they are all delightful and satisfying.