An eccentric Russian royal advisor, a small group of plotting dissidents, a plate of poisoned cupcakes.

Kate Mulvany can't seem to keep away from history's big bads at the moment. Fresh from a turn as Shakespeare's dastardly prince-killer Richard III, The Rasputin Affair is her latest written work, a study of the mystical Russian royal advisor and his infamous brushes with death.

With Europe in the throes of the First World War, a small group of Russian dissidents decide to do away with the hypnotic holy man, Grigori Rasputin. The king, Tsar Nicholas II, considers him indispensable and the conspirators believe the only means of breaking the spell is to eject Weirdy-Beardy into the underworld. Their chosen weapon? A plate of poisoned cupcakes. But Rasputin hasn't gotten this far by falling prey to suspicious-smelling baked goods. He also claims to be a messenger from God. If the attempt succeeds, will the poisoners have knocked off a legit prophet?

Since coming to power, Vladimir Putin has been an almost constant source of weirdness. The Rasputin Affair proves that he is simply continuing in a rich tradition.

Published on April 03, 2017 by Matt Abotomey

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