The reserved daughter of a much declined, unusually affectionate St. Petersburg family, Irina Morozova senses death before it comes. Her arcane powers, unleashed with a few herbs and a candle’s flame, can summon the dead and bring them into the world of the living.
Yet that is the least of the pretty aristocrat’s worries. When her brothers rise up against the new Emperor on a cold December morning, Irina and her sisters lose their good names, their prospects for marriage, and their limited means. Irina’s brothers are sent to prison in Siberia, and the despairing Irina resolves to stage her own rebellion, diving into the shady margins of St. Petersburg’s artistic and literary circles, until her mysterious abilities come to the attention of the conservative but brilliant Prince Pavel Pozharsky, close confidant of the tsar.
Rich in historical detail, drawing gleefully on the humor and ardor of an era rarely chronicled in English, The Tomb and the Stone weaves Slavic lore with Buddhist belief, historical fact with fantastic horrors, all from an intimate female perspective. Supernatural adventure intertwines with the stirring fates of the Decembrist rebels and their families. The story moves from the stark sensuality of St. Petersburg to the unsung beauties of Siberia’s landscapes and indigenous nomad cultures.