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I Belong


Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Siege and StormTitle: Siege and Storm

Author: Leigh Bardugo

Genre: YA Fantasy

Series: The Grisha (Book #2)

Publication Date: June 4, 2013

Format: Hardcover, 432 Pages

ISBN-10: 0805094601 (MacTeen)

ISBN-13: 978-0805094602 (MacTeen)

Reviewed by: Kristie

Synopsis:

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.

Quick & Dirty: Hauntingly dark story, with a fast paced beginning and end, but the middle lags behind as the characters prepare for war.

Opening Sentence: Two weeks we’d been in Cofton, and I was still getting lost.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Siege and Storm is the second novel in the Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. The story starts off not too long after Alina and Mal have escaped the Darkling. They are trying to make a life for themselves in another country, hiding the fact that Alina is the Sun Summoner. Their life together is cute quite short when they are discovered and hauled back to Ravka by the Darkling and his terrible minions. The Darkling has a plan before taking over Ravka, his first step toward ruling the world, and that is to find another amplifier for Alina. This amplifier will allow the Darkling to use Alina’s power so that he can rule both light and dark.

The first part of Siege and Storm is pretty action packed. Alina or Mal’s life is on the line about every other paragraph. A new love interest for Alina is introduced in Sturmhond. He is witty, clever and of course not exactly as he seems. After a crazy set of events, Alina and Mal manage to escape from the Darkling but quickly find themselves back in Ravka where Alina decides to lead the charge to fight the Darkling.

The middle of Siege and Storm moves fairly slowly as Alina prepares for war. You do get to learn more about some of the added characters here which help fill the pages. Alina is also on the search for something to enable her fight against the Darkling. When the final “battle” happens it comes quick and fast, almost leaving you breathless. At the end of this novel, I felt a bit sad and depressed. It really makes me worry about the final book and how Alina’s story will end.

Alina is still the strong heroine that she was in Shadow and Bone. She is having to make some really tough decisions. Although, I am getting really frustrated with Alina and Mal’s relationship. I really like Mal because he’s the love she grew up with but they just won’t fight for each other. Sturmhond is an excellent replacement for Mal but he is still too untrustworthy to fall for I think. There is something intriguing and dark about the Darkling and you hope he has something to redeem in order to have Alina but I just don’t see that happening either.

Siege and Storm is told entirely from Alina’s first person perspective. While Alina may be able to summon light, the story is hauntingly dark. The people of Ravka have begun calling her a Saint and worshiping her as such but in this world all Saints’ have died terrible deaths. Alina even begins to have some behavioral changes, which could be blamed on several different things that have happened to her. A few times she is quick to anger and almost kills someone.

Overall, Siege and Storm does suffer a bit from middle book syndrome but in the end I really did enjoy the tale inside. I really liked the new characters introduced in Sturmhond, Tamar and Tolya. My heart still lies with the mopey Mal even though I’m intrigued by both Sturmhond and the Darkling. I absolutely want to know how this series will end.

Notable Scene:

“Come back to me,” He said softly. He drew me toward him, but as his lips brushed mine, something flickered in the corner of my eye.

The Darkling was standing behind Mal. I stiffened.

Mal pulled back. “What?” He said.

“Nothing. I just…” I trailed off. I didn’t know what to say.

The Darkling was still there. “Tell him you see me when he takes you in his arms,” he said.

The Grisha Trilogy:

1. Shadow and Bone

2. Siege and Storm

3. Ruin and Rising

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FTC Advisory: Henry Holt & Co./Macmillan provided me with a copy of Seige and Storm. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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