lip lit: paulina simmons, the bronze horseman
THE BRONZE HORSEMAN IS MADE OF PURE GOLD
Dedicated to Hayley, and her own Shura
Move over Shakespeare, there is a new writer in town, majoring in love. The Bronze Horseman is an epic war torn romance between Tatiana and Alexander, during the Leningrad Nazi blockade. Paullina Simmons poetically takes the reader on a journey through the life of Communist living during a Nazi invasion, as well as focusing on family tensions and ultimately the act of falling in love in Stalinist Russia. The Bronze Horseman has the social struggles of Jack and Rose from Titanic, the passion of Ally and Noah from The Notebook and the literature beauty from Romeo and Juliet. Alexander, the obvious shining knight, makes your heart melt, whilst Tatiana, the frail heroine, makes the reader want to be her best friend. Paulina Simmons has outdone herself writing this romantic war epic for the eager readers of today.
Now don’t assume that I am a classic girly girl who cries at every first kiss she sees in a movie or reads in a book. I am tough when it comes to romance stories, and tougher when it comes to horror novels. Frankenstein and Dracula are apart of my classics collection. So do not judge The Bronze Horseman by it`s cover. The damsel in distress routine is non-existent and the white knight theme parallels the astounding historical accuracy Simmons gives. The descriptive imagery is haunting, tragic and then suddenly inviting. The depth of character`s and social themes are what compels Tatiana’s and Alexander’s love, not the usual boy meets girls, boy and girl fall in love, and they all lived happily ever after. For all those history enthusiasts out there, come on I know there are others than myself, reading The Bronze Horseman is like having Stalinist Russia outside your bedroom door. Unlike Tatiana and Alexander, this is just in our imagination.
The theme that resonates with me after I have put my bookmark in is the social struggle that is Communism. It is easy to objectively study the implications of socialism and Stalin in our history and politics books, but to truly understand what it was like takes imagination. Paullina Simmons takes us there herself, as the reader follows Tatiana and Alexander hide their love where communal living is treasured and any Russian comrade is an ally. Not only is the Communism life explored, but the Nazi blockade that caused millions of Russians to starve to death also confronts the reader. Simmon`s symbolism, description and empathetic literature causes even the reader to begin twitching in hunger. The historical and social themes within the book are what drive the entire plot and characters.
The Bronze Horseman is not for the faint hearted and is not only for lovesick girls. True, the love that embraces Tatiana and Alexander is addictive, however the accumulation of their attraction and the tragic writhe against fate to survive is what makes their love pure gold. A book that you will not be able to put down, guaranteed.