Seige and Storm - Leigh Bardugo

Review for…

Siege and Storm (Shadow and Bone #2) by Leigh Bardugo

Darkness never dies.

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.

At first, it seemed like a dream. Lovers, free at last, but on the run from a looming evil, but what was the dream? Their being on the run, or the evil catching up with them?

But the Darkling is all too real.

The best things about this book were the parts involving the privateer, Sturmhond, and Alina’s darkness and thirst for power. Though it ended up being an awesome ending, the twist I didn’t see coming made my heart pound so much! I was so worried for Alina in the end, and how she ‘broke’ I suppose is the best way to put it. Though it does explain some fanart. I like that much is still unclear for us, and much will be revealed in the last book.

Big sigh. Now for some of my quibbles...

Mal and Alina aren’t an exciting couple, but it’s not because I want her to be with the Darkling or Nikolai. (Though a political marriage with Nikolai would be interesting, but not at all Nikolai’s speed and rude to Mal as well.) It feels like so much revolves around the love square (Darkling vs Mal vs Nikolai), but not a very tense one if I’m being honest. Mal may keep being a dunderhead, but no one is a competition for Alina’s affections. She may be charmed by Nikolai, and have a connection to the Darkling, but there’s no one else for her.

Lastly, this may be a spoiler if I’m right, but maybe you’ll laugh if you already know the answer. My theory is this: could Mal be the firebird? How wild would that be?

In sum, I can’t wait to read Ruin and Rising, and then finally sit in anticipation of King of Scars with the rest of you.

Like a firebird from the ashes…

Pages: 401
Year: 4 Jun 2013
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co (BYR)

Read: 21 Dec 17 - 23 Dec 17
Stars: 4 (really liked it)