I have read the second book in the Grisha trilogy, which is Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo. This was a fabulous book and was a wonderful second installment. I loved it just as much as the first book, Shadow and Bone, and I felt that it was more epic than the first. This book did not fall into second book syndrome, and I am highly impressed. However, the characters got a little annoying this time around. I gave this book a 4 out of 5 stars. Here is my Five Things Wrap Up!
- There are more epic components
This one definitely fits the bill for an epic high fantasy YA novel. This second installment had more magic and adventure. The majority of the book was on the run, or under siege. Ha, see what I did there? The first book dealt with Little Palace, and how Alina was transitioning into her powers. This book followed her through skilled fighting and tracking of mystical creatures, such as a majestic ice dragon. There are flying ships and valiant soldiers who want to stand by their leader, and an epic fight scene. In regards to more action and fantasy elements, this second book did a magnificent job. I am excited to read the final book, and unveil what will happen next.
- The absence of the Darkling
I enjoyed the depth of the Darkling, and the mood he set when he was in a room. However, this book he is seen sparsely. There is a lot of guessing about his state of mind and physicality. You’re not quite sure if he is getting weaker or stronger. I loved the sarcastic banter between him and Alina, and it reminded me of Spike and Buffy from Buffy the Vampire Slayer. They have witty remarks, and Alina hates that she once fell for his antics. I really hope the next book showcases the Darkling a little more.
- There is still a lack of background information
I still have no idea about what this world is. There are new characters and there is no explanation why the Grisha have such a stigma in some areas of the world, and not others. There is a small peak into the Darkling and his family, but it is dealt with quickly. I do not want to give any spoilers away, but I am just still not impressed with the lack of knowledge about the world and the origin of the people and places. Everything that could hold an explanation, are just waved away as being a myth that people never knew actually existed.
- Mal and Alina get annoying
Mal and Alina have this thing where they are both stubborn and don’t like to communicate. They both hide things from one another and then lash out when they are confronted. Mal is an extremely insecure, prideful male and he just got on my nerves. Some of the things he would do were immature. Alina never opened up to him about her doubts or things that are troubling her. It gets old, and it goes on for the majority of the book. I don’t like whiny relationships. HOWEVER, Alina goes through spectacular character development. I was most impressed with Alina’s development. Bardugo focused on the crave of more power in the back of Alina’s mind. Not many heroines deal with wanting to attain more power in a selfish manner. This set Alina apart from many other YA heroines.
- Bardugo’s descriptions are flawless
Bardugo does a wonderful job at storytelling. The writing is haunting and beautiful. There are words written in blood on the side of a church that praise Alina their saint and savior. We hear the Volcra screeching a humanly shriek. We see the stark contrast between those who live in quaint villages and those who eat candied cuckoo in crystal bowls. Everything she writes has a purpose and is written brilliantly. I can’t wait to read the final book.
Read ya later!