Name a book or author that you truly wanted to love but left you disappointed. (And, of course, explain why.)
The Summer Garden by Paulina Simons is the third and last in the Tatianna and Alexander trilogy.
I loved The Bronze Horseman and I liked Tatiana and Alexander. Simons originally intended to end it with the second book – this is fairly obvious from the epilogue. However she decided to milk her most popular book again by writing a third book. Disappointment is not really the word to describe how I felt. I was so excited that there was going to be a third, despite thinking the second one was probably a good place to end. I just wanted to get back into these characters again.
Well – let me say – she turned two good characters into two people I loathed. She butchers them – I don’t mean literally. It is quite possibly the worst book that I have ever read – I didn’t even get to finish reading it because I just couldn’t read another 300 pages of them doing the exact same thing, just hacking away at the exact same storyline and not really taking it anywhere else.
Simons wanted to show what happened to them afterwards and how they coped and survived through what happened to them in the previous books. Which is all very well if she dealt with it logically but she didn’t at all. The characters did nothing but argue, have sex and move around the country for at least the first half.
I fell in love with The Bronze Horseman – it’s a really good book and I would recommend it completely and honestly – even the sequel Tatianna and Alexander. I would not, on any account recommend the third. In fact – this might sound slightly very arrogant of me – but I would probably recommend giving it a wide birth.
It has a rather high average rating on Amazon and on Goodreads – but considering only 22 people on Amazon.com and only 18 people on Amazon.co.uk actually bothered reviewing it – compared to the 183 people and 100 who reviewed The Bronze Horseman – I can presume that many people were so disappointed that they were not even able to get so far as reviewing it.
I suppose I shouldn’t really have been too surprised – I read Simons’ The Girl in Times Square as well – which I did actually finish – and that was pretty abysmal too. I guess Simons has for me – reached the end of the road. I really enjoyed Tully as well – another book I would quite openly recommend – but I don’t think I can enjoy this author any more. These last two books I have read by her weren’t just merely boring, they were just systematically atrocious – almost like reading a car crash.
So in answer to that question – apologies for going off on one – Paulina Simons left me feeling massively disappointed because I really thought I loved her and then she wrote those two suckers. Talk about falling from cloud #9 to ground floor zero.