This novel attempts to make us witnesses to the lives of the Romanov sisters beginning just before the start of World War I. Following their everyday lives is, quite frankly, somewhat boring for the first half of the book. They are the sheltered young women that everyone who knows anything about the Romanovs already knows them to have been. The pace of the story really doesn't pick up until they start being transferred from Tsarskoe Selo.
The author chose to narrate the story from a different sister's point of view in each chapter, a method that was distracting and unnecessary. I kept finding myself looking back to remember whose thoughts I was reading. Only during the the time that the family was not all in the same place was there any value to this format.
If you are reading this expecting a wealth of information on the "big ending," I can only say to remember that this is told from the sisters' point of view. Though there is an epilogue and author's note, the main goal seems to be to humanize the Romanov family not to be an investigative report.