Thursday, 9 August 2012

Danielle Steel "Zoya"

There are aristocrats and aristocrats…

The term "aristocracy" is derived from the Greek ἀριστοκρατία (aristokratia), ἄριστος (aristos) "excellent," and κράτος (kratos) "power", says Wiki.
To qualify for the real princess a girl from Andersen’s fairy tale had to lie on a pea covered by twenty mattresses and twenty eider-down beds.  What kind of a test Zoya from Danielle Steel’s novel had to pass to prove her aristocratic title and to be named the one who possesses “excellent powers”?

A Russian princess, Zoya Yusupova, together with her grandmother miraculously manages to escape from revolutionary Petrograd. Life puts a stark choice: either marry the old man to gain the status of a traditional housewife, or strike through life on her own. Zoya, who studied ballet for many years in Russia, becomes a professional ballerina, despite the protests of her grandmother, who thinks that it is humiliating for an aristocrat.

Zoya gets acquainted with an American, Clayton Andrews, and falls in love with him. They get married and move to the New World. All seems to be going well - Clayton is secured financially; they have a son, Nicky, and a daughter, Sasha. But the Great Depression of the late 20s ruins the family. Clayton dies of the heart attack; Zoya has to take everything into her own hands. Her great idea - to help ladies to choose toilets at an expensive store (and she has an exquisite taste!) – works!  She becomes eventually the mistress of the whole empire named "Princess Zoya" and only at the age of seventy she hands over the management to her sons.

What an excellent power!

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