A Very Far Country Author:E. M. Almedigen "That country's full of wolves and bears, and there are those savage Cossacks and Tartars, and there's Siberia!" Her sister cried out the news that their father was taking them to Russia, but Ellen Southee listened quietly. — The time was September 1842. Ellen could not look into future and see how magically her life would unfold - how in Russia ... more »she would find love, become the mistress of vast estates, and learn how to know her own rebelious spirit.
E. M. Almedigen transports us across the years to that faraway idyllic England where Ellen was born and where she watched her beloved mother's life ebb away. She takes us into the glittering St. Petersburg drawing rooms where Ellen first met Serge, the fabulously wealthy nobleman who became her husband; to Avchurino, one of his incredible estates where Ellen had to manage a staff of hundreds. She takes us to Paris where the couple would one day live in impoverished exile after false stewards drained Serge's wealth.
We live with Ellen through three wars: the Crimean, when she suffered divided loyalties; the Franco-Prussian, when she and Serge experienced hunger during the Siege of Paris; the Boer, when her own son brought anguish to Ellen's heart.
Although its historical aspects are very entertaining and enlightening, A Very Far Country lives by the reality of its people and setting. Above all, it lives by the golden thread of complete trust and understanding that existed between the girl from Kent and the idealist from Russia.
The story of Ellen is a true story, carefully documented but told with the grace and excitement of fiction.« less