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In my eyes she had always been old, always been mine, always been Granny Dan. But in another time, another place, there had been dancing, people, laughter, love...She was the cherished grandmother who sang songs in Russian, loved to roller-skate, and spoke little of her past. But when Granny Dan died, all that remained was a box wrapped in brown paper. Inside, an old pair of satin ballet shoes, a gold locket, and a stack of letters tied with ribbon. It was her legacy, a secret past, waiting to be discovered by the granddaughter who loved her but never really knew her. It was a story waiting to be told...The year was 1902. A motherless young girl arrived at ballet school in St Petersburg. By the age of seventeen Danina Petroskova was forced to make a heartbreaking choice - as the world around her was about to change forever. In this extraordinary novel a simple box, filled with mementos from a grandmother, offers a long-forgotten history of youth and beauty, love and dreams.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780552145084
ISBN-10: 0552145084
Format: Paperback
(178mm x 106mm x 18mm)
Pages: 304
Imprint: Corgi Books
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Publish Date: 6-Jul-2000
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Reviews

US Kirkus Review » Steel's 46th romance (after Bittersweet, p. 405, etc.), this time about a young woman who finds her grandmother's letters . . . as well as her old toe shoes. After Granny Dan's death, the nursing home where she died sends her granddaughter a package of last effects - pictures, a locket, the ballet slippers, and a pile of letters tied together with faded blue ribbon and written in Russian, Dan's native tongue. Assuming the role of translator and plucker of heartstrings, Steel (perhaps we should call her Auntie Dan) creates the memoir of a woman who had always been old to her granddaughter. For those looking for a 3-D rendering of a 22-year-old ballerina who goes to New England during the Russian Revolution, look elsewhere. For those interested in the paper-doll version, including a ballgown presented by the czarina, Steel's story will not disappoint. Danina Petroskova arrived at the Maryinsky school in St. Petersburg at age seven, where she studied with religious dedication to become a prima ballerina. Years later, when she is felled by influenza, her doctor, Nikolai Obrajensky, also the czar's physician, brings her to the royal family's summer palace to recuperate. While staying with Nick, Alex, and the kids, Danina and the unhappily married Nikolai fall in love. From here on, the gentle reader can pretty much write the book herself. Back in St. Petersburg, Danina endures a botched abortion that almost kills her. Then, once she's back in prima condition, and after a couple of interludes with Nikolai at Tsarsko Selo, she breaks her ankle and will never be able to dance again. Meanwhile, the Revolution is in full swing. Nikolai arranges for Danina to go to his cousin in Vermont, where as soon as he can leave the czar's family, now under arrest, he'll join her. With her gift for turning tragedy into treacle, Steel writes the equivalent of one of those children's jewelry boxes where a plastic ballerina twirls to a very old tune. (Kirkus Reviews)


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Author Biography - Danielle Steel

Danielle Steel is one of the world's most popular and highly acclaimed authors, with over ninety international bestselling novels in print and more than 600 million copies of her novels sold. She is also the author of His Bright Light, the story of her son Nick Traina's life and death; A Gift of Hope, a memoir of her work with the homeless; and Pure Joy, about the dogs she and her family have loved. To discover more about Danielle Steel and her books visit her website at www.daniellesteel.com You can also connect with Danielle on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DanielleSteelOfficial or on Twitter: @daniellesteel

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