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.
“When people say impossible, they usually mean improbable.”
First thing’s first: I now understand the covers. And it’s a great feeling my friends because these covers (both the old version and the new version) are gorgeous and I feel in the gorgeous loop so just throwing that out there.
Siege and Storm picks up right where Shadow and Bone left off…or at least it kind of does? As in, it does for, like, one chapter and then something happens that really annoyed me because it basically completely negated the ending of the previous book. So that was annoying.
The overall pacing of this book felt a bit slow. I got rather bored during parts where it seemed like a lot of exposition and just wandering around talking, rather than any actual action happening. Of course, when the action does come in, in parts and patches and particularly during the ending, it’s absolutely phenomenal!
This book continues with excellent world building and extends on myths and legends touched upon in the first book. I really liked reading about the lore of Ravka, particularly with regards to Alina’s amplifier.
This book started to get much darker than the first one and I loved that! We see a change in Alina from the innocent girl she used to be to someone who hungers for power, whether for herself or for the greater good! She becomes so much stronger here too, especially as she develops her powers!
There are some new characters introduced in this book, and we definitely get to see more of some characters from the first book. I loved seeing these characters fleshed out, and watching Alina interact with them. I loved Tolya and Tamar and listening to their banter! Zoya was surprisingly likeable and fun to read: she reads like a one dimensional brat in the first book, but becomes really fleshed out here! I loved reading about little nerdy David as well!
Of course, if I’m talking about characters I need to talk about that lovely, terrible thing: the love…pyramid? (Or square? It’s more than a triangle now…that’s for sure). Basically my thoughts were just: why. Why? Why is this necessary? There were so many people vying for Alina and it really irked me yeah yeah she’s the chosen one she’s powerful alliances power you really get her but I mean, come on, she’s not *that* great that she needs to receive a marriage proposal every other chapter.
Mal So unpopular opinion alert…I don’t know why everyone on Goodreads seems to hate him? He’s far from a perfect character. At times here he treats Alina and others poorly, but you can tell that he really does love her, and he’s trying his best in a situation he never wanted.
Nikolai Omg I love this guy!!! He’s so charismatic and charming and I love his banter and how self assured he is, but also how much he loves his country, also he’s a smol suffering bean in the shadow of his terrible older brother doing his best and also I love him.
The Darkling I genuinely don’t know why people like The Darkling as a love interest. This guy is pure evil. He murdered thousands of innocent people, he’s power hungry and cruel, he readily tortures and kills people without conscious to achieve his means. I’m just. No.
Anyway, overall there were some annoying parts of his book, but I did thoroughly enjoy it and if you’re in the small population of people who live under a rock like me and haven’t read this book, I definitely recommend!