Siege & Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Age Range: 12 and up
Genre: high fantasy
Hardcover: 448 pages
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Release date: June 4, 2013
Series: Grisha #2
Source: Raincoast Books
Reviewed by: Tynga
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.
Aline and Mal are now actively running away from The Darkling after the stunt Alina pulled on him in the fold. She stills feels intense remorse over letting the Grisha and soldiers die to save Mal’s life, but how could she sacrifice him? Their life as a couple isn’t easy and matters gets worst when their nemesis catch up to them. Will both of them survive to tell the tale?
I know some have been disappointed with Siege and Storm, but I don’t think it suffered from the second-instalment-curse. I actually really liked it and I can’t wait to tell you all about it! While Shadow and Bone was fairly stationary with Alina learning about Grisha and her powers at the little palace, Siege and Storm felt like a moving forward quest. It all starts in Novyi Zem, moves on to the True Sea and ends in Os Alta. Our hero’s journey was smooth and addicting even though the plot wasn’t exactly action-packed.
We meet a handful of new characters and I must confess I fell for Sturmhond the pirate, umm, I mean Privateer *wink*. I even wish Alina would end up with him instead of Mal, who was a big disappointment this time around. There’s also a pair of twins I became very fond of and I enjoyed the ride with this merry crew. Alina changes a great deal over the course of this novel and I must say I am worried for her. Hopefully she’ll come back to her senses for the grand finally. The Darlking also developed some nifty talents, the things of nightmares, I swear!
The plot was intriguing and surprising. I didn’t see coming most of the key events and I must congratulate Leigh for a job well done. On the other hand, I feel like the final battle was over way too fast. It felt like David against Goliath, but the giant won this time around. Hopefully, Bardugo will make-up for it in the last novel of the trilogy.
Overall, Siege and Storm was a very surprising and satisfying sequel to an awesome first book in the series. I am anxious to get my hands on the last novel but I now must wait a whole year. I’m sure Leigh Bardugo will make the wait worth it and knock us senseless with an amazing conclusion. Fans of high fantasy will definitely appreciate this trilogy.