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Katerina Ivonovna Desnitsky and Prince Chakrabongse of Siam, on cover of 'Katya & The Prince of Siam', by River Books.

Katya & The Prince of Siam

By (author) Narisa Chakrabongse


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  • Captivating story that changed the course of history
  • Riveting account of Katya's journey to become Mom Katerin
  • Biographical story that bridges Siam, Russia, England and France
  • Rare and unseen portraits, letters and diary entries
  • Fascinating insight into pre-revolutionary Russia and the Siamese court
Full Description

Katya & The Prince of Siam is the story of an ultimately tragic love affair and marriage between a beautiful young Russian girl from Kiev and an eastern prince, HRH Prince Chakrabongse of Siam, one of King Chulalongkorn’s favourite sons. It tells of their meeting in St. Petersburg, their elopement to marry in Constantinople and their journey and arrival in Siam. At first an outcast in Thai society (no son of the King had ever married a foreigner before), Ekaterina Ivonovna Desnitsky, or Mom Katerin as she became known, gradually gained love and respect. In 1908 they had a son, Prince Chula and for the next ten years enjoyed a happy life in Bangkok society as well as making various trips abroad and throughout Siam. However, following the Russian Revolution and trip abroad on her own, the marriage became strained and ended in divorce in 1919. More tragedy was to follow, leaving Prince Chula, aged 12, to face an education in England alone. Making use of much hitherto unpublished archive material such as letters, diaries and photographs, the book gives a fascinating insight into the life in both pre-revolutionary Russia and the Siamese court.

About the Author

Narisa Chakrabongse is the only daughter of Prince Chula Chakrabongse of Thailand and his English wife Elisabeth Hunter. She is the author of many books as well as the editor of the 'Oxford River Books English-Thai Dictionary' and approximately fifty other titles related to art and culture in Southeast Asia. She is the founding president of Green World Foundation (GWF), an environmental foundation promoting education about environmental issues in schools. A well-known media personality in Thailand, she withdrew from the torch-running ceremony for the 2008 Summer Olympics, protesting against China's actions in Tibet; the first person to do so though followed by many others.

River Books
30th Dec 2014
Paperback / softback
World excluding Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
212 mm x 142 mm
320 Pages
280 b&w
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