GoodReads Summary: 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, all while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. But 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.
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Expected publication date: 07/06/13 (UK)
It's rare for a sequel to outshine its predecessor, but Leigh Bardugo's Siege and Storm managed to do just that!
Alina has the weight of the
world Ravka on her shoulders. She is faced with many challenges, all of which take a toll on her emotionally and physically. As well as trying to bridge the ever expanding gap between herself and Mal, she must learn to hone her powers if she wants to set Ravka free from the clutches of darkness. Alina's character truly leaves a lasting impression in Siege and Storm. Her courage and strength are admirable qualities, and while I did not always agree with her actions I definitely gained more respect for her.
A new character is introduced in Siege and Storm, and boy has he won me over. Witty and charming, Sturmhond brought some much needed comic relief to the story. He also kind of reminded me of Roar from Under the Never Sky in that they both have charismatic personalities, and are the very definition of well developed secondary characters.
I know some might consider Mal, Alina, and the Darkling a love triangle, but to me it doesn't read like one. The romance between Mal and Alina is breathtakingly beautiful, but it's not without its ups and downs. The two are faced with a lot of obstacles in Sienge and Storm - they share many sweet moments and just as many heartbreaking ones. Bardugo deserves a round of applause, because this is how you create conflict in a romance.
The Darkling doesn't make a huge appearance in book 2, but to my utter delight Mal does. No need to worry, though Darkling fans, because the power hungry and alluring creature still manages to make an impact.
There is no second book syndrome here, Siege and Storm is a stunning sequel that took my breath away.
“I have loved you all my life, Mal," I whispered through my tears. "There is no end to our story.”