Marie of Roumania was one of the most
fascinating women of her period—a queen descended from the highest royalty of
Europe; a woman of striking beauty whose opinions were in advance of her time
and whose life was the gossip of three continents; a devoted mother and wife; a
determined politician; and a figure of world dimension whose indomitable courage
during World War I made her the beloved symbol of her country. The Last
Romantic is the story of her colorful life, which drew together the royal
lineage of England, Russia, and Germany and epitomized the proud and dazzling
world of the European aristocracy at its highest moment before it was swept from
the modem stage.
"Her style is clear, crisp, and often
witty. And her subject is one of those transitional figures who crossed the void
between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, or, rather, the pre- and
post-World War I worlds, whom I find fascinating.... Ms. Pakula does a fine job
of recreating her world and making clear what an interesting figure she was."
"The Last Romantic is the story of royalty
adrift on the cruel seas of the twentieth century. Hannah Pakula combines
scholarship with narrative elegance in this absorbing rendition of a life filled
with illusion, drama, and pathos."
Hannah Pakula began research on the life of Queen Marie of Roumania in 1975 when she was living in Los Angeles. Since that time her investigation has taken her to archives in Roumania, castles in Germany, and the homes of surviving members of the Queen's family in Europe and America to collect private papers and reminiscences. Mrs. Pakula attended Wellesley College, the Sorbonne, and Southern Methodist University; she has written book reviews for the Los Angeles Times and the Dallas Morning News. Married to film director Alan J. Pakula, she has three grown children and lives in New York.