The golden skies, the translucent twilight, the white nights, all hold the promise of youth, of love, of eternal renewal. The war has not yet touched this city of fallen grandeur, or the lives of two sisters, Tatiana and Dasha Metanova, who share a single room in a cramped apartment with their brother and parents. Their world is turned upside down when Hitler’s armies attack Russia and begin their unstoppable blitz to Leningrad.

Yet there is light in the darkness. Tatiana meets Alexander, a brave young officer in the Red Army. Strong and self-confident, yet guarding a mysterious and troubled past, he is drawn to Tatiana—and she to him. Starvation, desperation, and fear soon grip their city during the terrible winter of the merciless German siege. Tatiana and Alexander’s impossible love threatens to tear the Metanova family apart and expose the dangerous secret Alexander so carefully protects—a secret as devastating as the war itself—as the lovers are swept up in the brutal tides that will change the world and their lives forever.


I was absolutely consumed by this series, for 8 straight days, I lived and breathed these characters and devoured their epic, but also tragic and heartbreaking story. I can’t remember the last time I felt so connected to a story. This book, in fact all three books, are not for everyone. This is a forbidden and angsty read, with many moments that will make you feel many sad and angry feelings, but the story is contrasted with some of the most beautiful and wonderful, fulfilling moments that I have ever had the pleasure to read in my life.

The story of Tatiana and Alexander begins in 1941 in Leningrad, and on the day that war is declared, Tatiana an innocent girl of 17, and Alexander a young soldier in the Red Army, cross paths unaware of how much their lives and future plans will change.

This book was everything to me, I loved so many things about it. I was absolutely engrossed in the setting, as although I don’t read historical romance very often, this is definitely the first time I have read a book set in WW2 Russia, it was extremely eye-opening to view this important part of history from a different POV than what I have experienced before.

“I’m a soldier in the Soviet Union. I could die any minute a thousand different ways to Sunday. This might be the last minute we will have together. Don’t you want to spend that minute with me?

Tatiana may have been a young and innocent girl at the beginning, but the horrors of war and all of the loss and devastation soon ages her, and her pure and caring character was completely endearing to me. Alexander was pure Alpha Male and his fierce and protective nature was so extremely appealing to me that I forgave his moods, for he came out with some of the most beautiful words, anything could be forgiven.

Tatiana: “Why did we spend two days fighting when we could have been doing this?”
Alexander: “That wasn’t fighting, Tatiana. That was foreplay.”

Their love for each other was beyond measure, and whilst I found some of their decisions extremely frustrating, I just had to trust in the story and experience all of the many feelings that this novel evoked in me.

The characters went through so much throughout the entire trilogy and I felt so invested in them that I am going to find it very hard to move on to another book. The Bronze Horseman is without a doubt, a top favourite that will forever live in my heart, and whilst I wasn’t entirely enamoured with the second book, Tatiana and Alexander, I was completely won over again with the finale, The Summer Garden.

“Tania, you are my miracle, you know that, don’t you? You are the one God sent me to give me faith.” He paused. “He sent you to redeem me, to comfort me, and to heal me— and that’s just so far,”

If you love a book that takes you on an emotional story, this is a must read – Tatiana & Alexander are by far, one of my favourite book duo ever. Top marks for the whole series, and a million stars to this, The Bronze Horseman.

The Bronze Horseman is a historical romance, and the first in the trilogy. Told from dual POV.

Images featured in this review were created by me using stock images either purchased from deposit photo or from free stock sites.

About the Author

Paullina Simons was born in Leningrad, USSR, in 1963. At the age of ten her family immigrated to the United States. Growing up in Russia Paullina dreamt of someday becoming a writer. Her dream was put on hold as she learned English and overcame the shock of a new culture.

After graduating from university and after various jobs including working as a financial journalist and as a translator Paullina wrote her first novel Tully. Through word of mouth that book was welcomed by readers all over the world.

She continued with more novels, including Red Leaves, Eleven Hours, The Bronze Horseman, The Bridge to Holy Cross (also known as Tatiana and Alexander), The Summer Garden and The Girl in Times Square (also known as Lily). Many of Paullina’s novels have reached international bestseller lists.

Apart from her novels, Paullina has also written a cookbook, Tatiana’s Table, which is a collection of recipes, short stories and recollections from her best selling trilogy of novels, The Bronze Horseman, The Bridge to Holy Cross, (also known as Tatiana and Alexander) and The Summer Garden.

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