I’m always a little nervous when I read sequels, because I’m afraid it won’t be as great as the first. Luckily, Leigh Bardugo did not disappoint in Siege and Storm.
Synopsis: After overcoming the control of the Darkling, Alina and Mal set off together to hide from him; their freedom doesn’t last long. The Darkling has a plan and it involves Alina. But with the help of privateer Sturmhond, Alina is determined to defeat the Darkling and save Ravka.
This book definitely improved from the first. Less learning and more action! (I love action and drama.) I want to say: And the plot thickens. It really does. There is more going on than with the first book, and Alina and Mal have much more to overcome, individually and as a couple.
There are a few new characters. I felt pretty much indifferent towards Tamar and Tolya (though they did become a bit more complicated by the end, so I think I will like them more in the next book), but Sturmhond/Nikolai is AMAZING. He is so different from Mal, whom I love, but he is so fun. I’m sure Leigh had a great time writing him. I still giggle over the things he said when I think back on it, especially when he tries to get under Mal’s skin.
I felt like Alina was really similar to Juliette from Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi (still my favorite series of all time). Alina, like Juliette, was shy and pretty powerless in the first book, but by the second, she’s toughened up and coming into her own. Then there’s the love interest and the funny/pain-in-the-neck guy you can’t help but smile with. And the girls are ready to kick butt! If you liked the Shatter Me series, I highly recommend the Grisha trilogy, or vice versa.
This sequel gets a 5 out of 5 stars.