Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Posted June 20, 2014 by Bee in Reviews / 5 Comments

Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Siege and Storm

by Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha #2
Published on June 4th 2013
by Henry Holt & Co.
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Also by this author: Shadow and Bone, Ruin & Rising, Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, Ruin and Rising

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.

4.5 Stars

Normally I don’t review a book again. I really don’t. But this is an exception because I just read it at the wrong time when I read it the first time around and now I did love it more than I did back then. I do understand why I didn’t like it as much though. Since this is a sequel, there probably will be spoilers for the first book, Shadow & Bone, in this review. Be warned!

Siege & Storm starts off a bit after the events of Shadow & Bone. Alina and Mal are on the run and in hiding for the Darkling, but they’re luck runs out fast. The Darkling finds them and takes them on a ship to find something (I know what but you can’t know yet. Spoilers!). The ship belongs to Stormhund who has secrets of his own to keep from the Darkling. He helps Alina and Mal escape and from there on out it’s really just Alina and Mal and the others trying to find a way to stop Darkling’s evil plans.

While I liked this book a lot more than I did the first time I read it, I do understand why I didn’t like it as much back then. Siege & Storm starts off great. The first few chapters are full of suspense, angst, action and all that greatness. But then, (view spoiler) things get a bit slow and sometimes even a tad boring. Barely anything happens until the last few chapters. Those toss my feelings around and shake them up and then it ends and I’m left speechless. That’s good and all, but I still had that slow middle!

Normally that wouldn’t have bothered me if what does happen is interesting enough to keep my attention! Most of it is, but the one thing that put me off was Mal. I really didn’t like him in this book. He was so insecure of himself and his relationship with Alina! It was annoying really. Alina has a lot on her plate, so she could’ve used his support! I missed the sweet, loving Mal from Shadow & Bone. Alina is still great. And even though she’s seen as a Saint by a lot of people, she struggles with all the power she has and the responsibility that comes with it. There’s a lot of pressure on her. And then there’s also the nightmares she has. The Darkling keeps haunting her and then Mal is acting all annoying… I would just crawl away in a corner and cry. But Alina is tough and I did really respect her. She learns in this book. She learns what power can do to a person.

I’m not going to say a lot about Stormhund and the Darkling because of spoilers. I will say that I love Stormhund and I want him to be real. He’s so very charming and awesome. The Darkling has gained a new power in this book, one that is very terrifying and not good at all. He’s darker and more evil but still I cannot hate him. I still hope that somewhere deep inside he has a good side. I did love Tolya and Tamar, two of Stormhund’s crewmembers who play a bigger role in this book than the others do. They’re so fierce, awesome and loyal.

The best thing about all of these characters is that none of them are 100% good. The “good guys” all have a darker side to them, even if it is small and well hidden. I really liked that. It made them more real! Mal’s dark side came out in this book I think and I didn’t like it. I hope he changes in Ruin & Rising.

Siege & Storm is a great sequel to the fantastic Shadow & Bone. While it does suffer from the dreaded Second-Book-Syndrome a bit, it still has enough action and suspense to keep you invested in the story. A great set-up for what will be an epic finale.


About Leigh Bardugo

Leigh Bardugo is the #1 New York Times bestselling and USA Today bestselling author of Six of Crows (awarded starred reviews from Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, VOYA, SLJ, and the BCCB) and the Grisha Trilogy: Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising. She was born in Jerusalem, grew up in Los Angeles, graduated from Yale University, and has worked in advertising, journalism, and most recently, makeup and special effects. These days, she lives and writes in Hollywood where she can occasionally be heard singing with her band.

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