Winter 1916, in St Petersburg, snow is falling in a country on the brink of revolution.
Beautiful and headstrong, Sashenka Zeitlin is just sixteen. As her mother parties with Rasputin and her dissolute friends , Sahsenka slips into the frozen night to play her role in a dangerous game of conspiracy and seduction.
Twenty years on, Sashenka has a powerful husband and two children. Around her, people are disappearing though her own family seems safe. But she’s about to embark on a foreign love affair which will have devestating consequences.
Sashenka’s story lies hidden for half a century, until a young historian goes deep into Stalin’s private archives and uncovers a heartbreaking tale of passion and betrayal, savage cruelty and unexpected heroism – and of a woman forced to make an unbearable choice…