"Nicholas B.A. Nicholson...establishes a richly textured landscape with an array of vivid characters who live and breathe... OBJECT OF VIRTUE is the literary equivalent of the Fabergé figurines around which the story revolves. It is [in itself] an 'object of virtue'.
- Round Table Reviews, May 2004
"Nicholson, a former specialist on Russian art works at Christie's, presents a timely debut novel, considering the April auction of the Forbes collection of Fabergé Imperial Easter Eggs at Sotheby's. This tale of a Fabergé figurine, the Snow Maiden, is dense with insider expertise and historical detail. Prince Alexander "Sasha" Ozerovsky, who as a child absorbed his mother's lessons about rare Russian antiquities and objets d'art, is resident specialist of the Russian Works of Art department at Leighton's, New York's premier small auction house. Conflicts of interest arise when he must authenticate a previously unknown figurine that his great-grandmother may have once owned: "The figure was of a young girl in Russian costume, her arms delicately raised in the gestures of Russian folk dance.... She seemed to move on her own: the light reflecting off the carefully cut and set stones, the face... seemingly aglow from within." The piece has just begun making news when Sasha's cousin and his own father bring suit against the Russian owner, claiming family right of ownership. While the suit is resolved, Leighton's puts Sasha on leave of absence, and he heads to Russia as a guest of the Fabergé collector clients of the figurine's owner. As he continues his quest to authenticate the figurine, he discerns his hostess has been sold some clever forgeries, and soon Sasha finds himself at odds not just with his family but with the Russian mafia as well."
- From Publisher's Weekly, April 5th, 2004
"As smart as it is well-researched, Object of Virtue is not only a great read, but also offers an intimate look into what a family is willing to pay both for its pride and integrity. I was as impressed by Nicholson's depth of knowledge of the art world as I was by his insights into Russia, past and present."
- Robert Alexander, New York Times best-selling author of "The Kitchen Boy"
"Fabergé, Romanovs, and the Russian art world are the backdrops for this labyrinth of intrigue written with intelligence by someone who knows his stuff."
- Steve Berry, National Bestselling Author of "The Amber Room"