`Charming, touching, tragic and thrilling' Simon Sebag Montefiore. Separated from her three young sons, stripped of her possessions and fearing for her life, Countess Edith Sollohub found herself trapped in revolutionary Russia. The daughter of a high-ranking diplomat, Edith was destined to join the social and intellectual elite of Imperial Russia. As a child she spent the summers learning to ride and shoot on the family's country estate; during the winter months her parents hosted lavish parties in their luxurious St Petersburg Apartment. This privileged upbringing would ultimately help her survive the traumatic events of the 1917 revolution. This is Edith's personal account of her escape from Russia in which she assumed new identities as a Polish refugee, a travelling musician and even a Red Army nurse. She would endure hunger, imprisonment and loneliness in the quest to be reunited with her family.
Edith Sollohub taught herself to type in order to support herself and her sons in their one-room apartment in Paris. She typed some of her account of her life in Russia in snatched moments, and added to these in later life. The manuscript of The Russian Countess was left to her youngest son and daughter-in-law after her death in 1965, who lovingly deciphered the handwritten notes, edited the text and unearthed photographs to ensure that her wish - that her memoirs might one day be published - be fulfilled.