Name: Siege and Storm (The Grisha #2)
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Number of Pages: 432 pages in Hardcover
Published: June 4th 2013
by Henry Holt and Co.
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance, Paranormal
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.
I started reading this right after I’ve finished Shadow and Bone since it left me wanting for more. It thrilled me expecting the second book would be much more enthralling. Though I have minor issues with the first book, I realized that’s not enough for me to stop there. I loved the world building and the plot has potential though I find some things confusing at first. So there. I moved on to the second book. Several friends has told me that the second book was a lot better than the first. I’m afraid I can’t agree with that. Let’s get to the specifics. Drum rolls please..
The writing was what I loved on Shadow and Bone and still, I loved it. There’s something in it that a reader would actually stick to the book no matter how lame the plot is. To be honest, that’s what happened to me. We’ll talk about it later. Let’s get to the world building first. The world of Grisha never fails to amaze me. Since Alina and Mal escaped the Darkling and have gone into hiding beyond The Unsea, the author has introduced the extension of the nation of Ravka. The True Sea and the places farther than that. Here’s an illustration of the extended world of Grisha by Keith Thompson:
No doubt I was fond of the world of Grisha. So much effort was put into this magical world that it’s poster worthy. Anyway, I must admit I’ve enjoyed nearly half of the book. It was nice reading about Alina and Mal escaped the Darkling, but their freedom was short-lived. The Darkling has cleverly launched an ambush that they’re not expecting so yeah, caught. Again. I was disappointed. It’s like they’re playing hide-and-seek. The only difference was, the Darkling always got to say.. “Booya! Found you!”. They boarded a ship where they’re held captive with Grishas and pirates who were working for the Darkling. How they escape (Which was what I’ve expected. But of course, they’re lead characters and there’s Book 3. Got it?) was the one that surprised me. The turns of events caught me (okay) wanting to read more. They’re somehow tricked to accept an offer they can’t refuse and then they’re back in Ravka. That’s where the story dragged. That’s exactly where I got bored. Remember when I’ve posted some reviews about readers complaining that the book was boring? OMG. It was for the most part. Sorry. I’ve expected that this would be more action-packed than the first, but it’s all this and that. I’m afraid I can’t discuss the details of what had happened on this part of the book. I could giveaway a lot. I think that would ruin the only good chunk. The book only picked up when the Darkling was also back in Ravka with a vengeance and then, yes, you have guessed it right, they’ve escaped. Again. There’s only little resolution on this book and it seemed they continued to play hide-and-seek. See where I’m coming from? It kind of annoyed me. Sigh.
The only thing that had me continue reading this were the new characters presented. I especially loved Sturmhond aka Nikolai Lanstov. That faker and charming pirate. I loved how he talked himself out of everything. His wit and sarcasm? Adorable. Loved him. As I’ve read reviews, most readers loved him too. This is where you’ll say.. “I wonder why they loved him.” Lol! Alina. Alina. She’s getting more and more hungry for power. I can’t say I like her on this book and there’s a point where I got tired reading her POV. Mal drifted away from her because of the things she’s keeping from him. If she’d told him everything, I think the events could be different. I’m also annoyed with Mal since she wants Alina to give up being a Grisha. Though he was aware that it makes her frail to not use her powers. Such selfishness. I don’t think I want Alina to end up with him. He also tends to dwell with self-pity and the drama of “I don’t belong here.” which was so exasperating. The Darkling on the other hand was getting more interesting. Wait. I still hate him. Lol! I guess there’s so much more about him other than what the book presented so I’m looking forward to that on the third book. There are other characters that got my attention. Like Tamar and Tolya. Okay, let’s include the creepy Apparat. And Genya. I am so sad for what had happened to her, I could only wish that she’d fled when she had the chance.
Well, I still recommend this. Just one thing though. Be patient. Lol! There were exciting and dull parts so just bear with it. It was good eventually. A lot has loved this so I guess, it’s just me. 😀
It pained me to rate this a three. Sorry.
I’ll still read book three though 😀