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Bellagrand (The Bronze Horseman, #00)
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(The Bronze Horseman #00)

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  1,749 ratings  ·  191 reviews
They gave up everything to be together, but love was just the beginning of their journey...

Italian immigrant Gina, independent, compassionate and strong, desperately wants a family. Boston blue-blood Harry, idealistic and fiercely political, wants to create a better world, a better country. Bound together by tormented passion, they rail, rage, and break each other’s hearts
Paperback, 560 pages
Published March 25th 2014 by William Morrow Paperbacks
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Average rating 3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,749 ratings  ·  191 reviews

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Marie L.
Dec 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book broke my heart in so many ways. Bellagrand is the prequel to The Bronze Horseman, I'm assuming if you're reading this review that you've read The Bronze Horseman.

This is the story about Alexander's parents that spans over four decades. It's the story of a woman who loved a man too much, a man who didn't deserve her love. A man who was selfish, a man who thought only of himself and his goals. A man who was lazy, lived in wealth and never saw the irony of what he was promoting. A man wh
Dec 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is what I think of Harold/Harry Barrington:
Selfish, unappreciative. Self absorbed. Ignorant. At first admired his passion, strength ability to fight for what he wanted. Ended up appearing immature, his arguments pointless and conflicting with his own beliefs.

It was difficult to read, him single-handedly destroying his family's future. He was a terrible husband - he lied to Gina, kept things from her for so many years. He didn't care if he want to prison, he was ungrateful when she bailed h
Sep 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: series
3.75 stars

The sequel to "Children of Liberty", Bellagrand continues the story of Italian immigrant Gina and her silver spooned American husband Harry and the tulmutous relationship that will set them on a future they could never imagine. Set in the backdrop of the rise of fascism and communism in the 1920's and the U.S. governments drive to squash these ideologies, Paullina Simons also takes readers into the heart of a marriage.

Whereas many authors focus on the falling in love part, Simons is
Jul 14, 2015 rated it really liked it

I never believed I could love a book by Paullina Simons that wasn't The Bronze Horseman this much.

Bellagrand was both incredibly beautiful and epic. We all know how it ends for Gina and Harry. But it's not about the destination, it's the journey. And it was a fantastic experience.
"I regret I have only one heart to love you with. I regret I have only one brief life to love you.

Paullina Simons's writing is as beautiful and flowing as ever. It's beautiful, raw, heart stoppin
Mar 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
1st read: July 18-20, 2015
2nd read: June 20-July 4, 2017

First read notes:
Wow. Well, I didn't think it was possible for me to love Alexander any more than I already did, but it has happened. I loved this book. No, it isn't the grand epic love story we get from Tatiana and Alexander, but it wasn't supposed to be. I didn't expect to love reading about Harry and Gina/Jane, but I really did. I still hate them as much as I did after reading TBH series, in fact I hate them even more...BUT I did love
MK~ Picky Girl
Such a tragedy, but a story that needed to be told. Review to come

My favorite author and the prequel to my fave series The Bronze Horseman!!!! I can't wait!!!

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

March is going to be an amazing month!!

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos
Nov 29, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who has read The Bronze Horseman
Shelves: books-i-own
I love Paullina Simons. I love her writing and her stories. She is my favourite author. I love The Bronze Horseman and the story of Tatiana & Alexander. I really loved the writing and the way she told this story, and I love that I have closure now after Children of Liberty. However, the story did my head in. I wanted to continually reach into the book and strangle Harry for not putting his family first, and strangle Gina for staying with him. I fully support fighting for what you believe is righ ...more
Jul 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
O.M.G. Will I EVER be the same again? Will I ever recover from this? Will my tears stop and heart stop breaking?

Let me just start by saying that, Bellagrand has become my favourite book of all Paullina Simons' books so far, even more so than The Bronze Horseman from an emotional level. Don't get me wrong, TBH is still my favourite of all time, but Bellagrand has got to me mentally and emotionally like no other. It is easily the BEST and most DRAMATIC and most ANGSTY book I have ever read. It IS
Sep 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
At first I was really excited to read this book as I wanted to read more about a young Alexander as The Bronze Horseman is my favourite book. However this book is not Alexander's story but Gina and Harry's story.

I really felt for Gina, as an Italian immigrant she had her whole life of opportunities in front of her in America. But she was so blind for her love for Harry and the decision to marry him changed her life forever. After years of struggle, of living poor and with Harry in and out of ja
Dec 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
"Love feels no burden, thinks nothing of trouble, attempts what is above its strength, pleads no excuse of impossibility; for it thinks all things lawful for itself, and all things possible was what the justice of the peace had said, quoting Tomas à Kempis. Why did the quote that was meant to strengthen them only weaken her?"

While Children of Liberty holds the foundation, Bellagrand carries all the sorrow in Harold & Gina's unfortunate love story. I knew reading this would be hard. It was 80% sa
Kristy Mcwilliams
Dec 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was disappointed in Children of Liberty because I was expecting more from the story. Bellagrand gives me the rest of the story that I was looking for. The only thing missing for me was a little more about their life in Russia but I think i need to re read the trilogy because I am sure it is all in there somewhere.

Bellagrand is compelling and devastating all at the same time. I want to reach into the book and shake sense into Harry and I was willing Gina to leave him many times but I knew if sh
Jul 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5* I've thought a lot on how to rate Bellagrand, my emotions were put through the ringer with the way Paullina unfolded this one. We know the ending and yet, I still found myself HOPING for a different outcome. It was a roller coaster of being irate, sad, conflicted, on edge, rooting for them and wishing their fate could have been different because some of the time you felt and believed in their love. Harry infuriated me. I wanted to shake him and tell him to WAKE THE HELL up for the love of G ...more
Melissa Ward
Jan 07, 2014 rated it did not like it
Talk about a downer, just wanted slap Harry and tell him to wake up to himself!
Renee Werthwein
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review to come. I'm still processing everything ...more
Jennifer Jones
Apr 05, 2014 rated it liked it
In BELLAGRAND, knowing how the story ultimately ends in THE BRONZE HORSEMAN, it's like a tragic train wreck that you know is coming but can't avoid. What ultimately is sad is the lost Gina. I found myself hoping that she somehow sees Harry for what he really is, not just for what she wants him to be. She never gives up on the dream that she first had when she met him all those years ago. Harry, I found, was not only the pitiful excuse of a husband she didn't deserve and couldn't quite let hersel ...more
Honestly I didn't think I would enjoy Harry and Gina's story as much as I did. How can you love characters when you know the fate that they have served their son (my dear and beloved Shura). How can you become attached to characters when you know their fate is a dreadful one? Two words Paullina Simons!!!!!!!

This author is beyond when it comes to writing and conveying emotions into words that etch into your heart. After reading Children of Liberty Children of Liberty (The Bronze Horseman, #0.5) by Paullina Simons you must read Bellagrand.

Alexander's paren
Carla Coulston
Jan 21, 2014 rated it liked it
I found this disappointing in the main.

I am one of Simons biggest fans, especially of her dearly loved Bronze Horseman Trilogy - and so imagine my delight to discover a prequel!

Unfortunately this wasn't the book I hoped it would be. One of Simons greatest strengths is as a historian, but instead of the historical elements providing a gentle undercurrent to carry the love story (as it did in Horseman), in this book it overwhelms and drowns it. It's a book full of politics and turmoil, of big, wid
Pamela Morris
Jan 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Oh sweet Bellagrand... I'm so glad Paullina Simons took the time to do these 2 prequels, because I love her writing - her characters are so real and you really feel for them, and it's great to know the backstory of how the broken parents we meet in The Bronze Horseman came to be so. On the flip side, this story is heartbreaking. Throughout this whole book, I wanted to beat Harry. He's just so out of touch with everyone and everything, and so self-righteous in his beliefs. I really didn't feel so ...more
Apr 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book has taken me forever to read. It made me so crazy at times I had to put it down for months on end. Bellagrand is a prequel to one of my all time favorite books, The Bronze Horseman. And logically, I knew what had to happen in this book to allow everything that will take place in the next. But that didn't stop my heart from wanting to knock some hella-sense into Harry Barrington's Socialists ASS! I kept yelling at Gina to kick him to the curb and go find Ben!! Also, even though these ev ...more
Nov 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Alexander is everything. And I loathe his parents more than ever. So, this book essentially didn't tell me anything I didn't already know.
I did enjoy reading about Alexander's young life before Russia, and the writing style was beautiful as always-- even while I wanted to throttle Harry and Gina (which is always).
It kills me a little that I can't hate Harry and Gina as much as I want to, because without their selfish, ridiculous actions, there would be no Tatiana and Alexander so...

I don't th
Jan 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
Spoiler alert!!!

Anyone who has read The Bronze Horseman will know that this book does not finish in a happy ending but it was a beautifully executed prequel. I preferred it to other books in the series, particularly The Bridge to Holy Cross, that relied too heavily on retelling the story, resulting in a repetitive and frustrating read.
I have puzzled over and over again over why Gina/ Jane would "agree" to follow her husband to the Soviet Union and am somewhat more understanding- though no less
Jessica Ruben
Jan 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
You know what? It was SO good. It was SO thought provoking and honest and sad. My heart broke through it all even though you know how it's going to end (because obviously you've already read the bronze horseman!). Simons just nailed these characters and their flaws. And she shows how sometimes one choice can end up affecting your entire life...for the worse. Sometimes things don't have a perfectly happy endings. We "hang in there" because we "should" but truly, we shouldnt! And I Just want to sa ...more
Rhiannon Hudson
Dec 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Better than Children of Liberty, but god does it just rip your heart out. But that's the best thing about Paullina Simons, she puts so much effort and detail into her characters so they can make you laugh and cry and be mad at them for days! ...more
Dec 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Better than Children of Liberty but very frustrating at times! Probably more like a 3 1/2 stars.
It is a good story and continues on from Children of Liberty so you already know the characters....but I found it hard to like one of them at the beginning and at the end of the book. Worth the read.
Sherryl Caulfield
Nov 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Bronze Horseman is my favourite teenage love story; the trilogy, one of my favourite series of all times.

And so it was in late 2012 when a prequel was released telling how Alexander Barrington’s parents met and fell in love in Boston in the early 20th century the book could have been called Great Expectations, such was the antipation for this novel. I carved out a few days to read Children of Liberty and then afterwards I was in a total slump, not because I had a book hang-over but because I
Dec 04, 2013 rated it liked it
Just finished reading, so sad. Even though you know how the story ends you just wish something would alter her course. I kept thinking go with Ben! Go with Ben!! I'm even thinking maybe Ben could still save Gina in Russia?? Maybe a third book Paulina??

I just really hope that we get to know more about Gina after she goes to prison, I'm so sad for her. And Harry, what a stupid, stupid man. He really did put her second.

I think this books adds so much depth to TBH, such a good lead into a re read,
Luchi Rzezak
May 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Heart broken so much to say...but I have been trying but just cannot put in words what I'm feeling after reading Bellagrand. An emotional rollercoaster and now I LOVE SHURA even more. My only one consolation is that I know he will find his tadpole, the love of his life and all this pain will have been worth it: TBH one of the most incredible and real love story that I have ever read ...more
Jan 22, 2015 rated it liked it
I was surprised that I enjoyed Bellagrand as much as I did. I found Children of Liberty quite boring & a struggle to finish. TBH trilogy is my all time favorite read. I feel a bit let down that we didn't see their time in Russia in more detail. A long build up then all finished in a few pages. A bit disappointed. ...more
Jan 16, 2017 rated it did not like it
Oh man I normally LOVE her books but I struggled through the first part of this book before giving up. Might pick it up later when I'm in a different mood! ...more
Jun 13, 2017 rated it liked it
This was about 150-200 pages too long. After hanging in there for 550 pages, the ending in the Soviet Union was very rushed.
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Around the Year i...: Bellagrand, by Paullina Simons 1 13 Jul 12, 2016 08:49PM  

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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 Paullin

Other books in the series

The Bronze Horseman (3 books)
  • The Bronze Horseman (The Bronze Horseman, #1)
  • Tatiana and Alexander (The Bronze Horseman, #2)
  • The Summer Garden (The Bronze Horseman, #3)

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“I know how it works, Esther. I graduated from Harvard." "Book-smart, but life-stupid," said Esther.” 2 likes
“All Alexander hears is his mother pleading, screaming, crying into the closed face of the consulate guard, as he keeps trying to pull her away, Please please please help him, we have money, a place to live, help him, help him, help him—” 1 likes
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