Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
June 4, 2013
Henry Holt and Co.
Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She can’t outrun her past or her destiny for long.
The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling’s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her–or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.
SIEGE AND STORM is an epic continuation to the uniquely imaginative and flawlessly written Grisha series. I’ve never ventured into such a complex world full of adventure and danger before Shadow and Bone. I’ve heard that second books sometimes have a hard time living up to their predecessors, but SIEGE AND STORM surpassed my expectations and shocked me to the core. Alina, Mal, the Darkling, and other fan favorites are back and more ready than ever for what the future will bring them. The obstacles facing each of them are numerous, and Alina may not be prepared for the consequences of SIEGE AND STORM. I’m in awe of everything about this novel and craving the next installation into Alina’s frightening world of magic and mayhem.
After all that Alina faced in Shadow and Bone, she’s one tough cookie after her escape from the Darkling. The guilt she caries from the consequences of her escape, however, weigh on her and force her to confront who she really is and who she’s destined to become. She will do anything in her power to stop the Darkling, even if it means sacrificing a part of herself to do so. The developments and revelations she faces in SIEGE AND STORM change everything for her and make her question everything she’s ever been told. I am incredibly proud of how far Alina has come. While she makes some very bad mistakes, it’s understandable in her situation. She more than deserves a happy ending after enduring the Darkling’s mental and physical torture, but I have no idea how she’ll get there. I am rooting for her!
The males that vie for Alina’s affections are numerous and all complete opposites of each other. The Darkling is bad to the core and incredibly selfish and mean, yet there is something about him that makes me want to forgive him. Can I just give him a big hug and make him all better? Mal is a steady companion to Alina who’s faced just as many challenges as she has. I would love for Alina to end up with her childhood sweetheart, but I find him a bit boring compared to the others. He’s also very hesitant to accept who Alina is becoming which makes me not happy. If he truly loved her, he would have Alina any way he can get her. He knows who she is inside, doesn’t he? And then there’s Sturmhond who’s new to the scene in SIEGE AND STORM. He’s a personal favorite of mine now. He says it like it is and doesn’t take crap from anyone. He’s also gorgeous and an incredible flirt which makes him all the more lovable. I can haz Sturmhond?
The world building in the Grisha series continues to rock my socks off. There’s so much to Alina’s world yet Bardugo introduces us to each element without overwhelming the reader with knowledge. It’s been a year since I read Shadow and Bone and I was easily able to catch up on the storyline and jump right in where it left off. The Grisha, the Fold, and the story behind Morozova’s amplifier(s) fascinate me. Bardugo reveals secrets about all of these things that made me gasp and jump right out of my seat. I don’t know how she does it, but wow!
SIEGE AND STORM is even better than Shadow and Bone, which I did not see coming. Bardugo has easily become one of my favorite YA authors, and I am eager for more in Alina’s crazy world.