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.
I couldn’t wait to return to the fascinating world of the Grisha, and the sequel to Shadow and Bone didn’t disappoint! Alina and Mal are on the run, but it isn’t long before the Darkling catches up to them. He is still intent on using Alina’s power for his own gain – and has a terrifying new dark power. Alina and Mal are rescued by a boat captained by Sturmhond, a mysterious privateer with motives of his own, who may be a friend or a foe. Alina is torn between the lure of her new abilities and the horror of the damage they can cause, and she definitely comes into her own in this book, even as she faces difficult decisions. I really felt for her and Mal as they came into conflict because Alina’s power pulls her away from him.
There are also a number of new secondary characters who add something new to the story, and some stunning action scenes. The plot takes unexpected turns and I found it hard to guess what was going to happen – which is a rarity with me! This book is slower paced than the first but I was never bored. Again, I love the world-building in this series, especially the folktales and myths that make up Ravka’s backdrop. There are so many details that build up a vivid picture of this world, yet it never feels overwhelming.
I think I preferred Shadow and Bone overall, but Siege and Storm is a fantastic sequel. The characters are flawed and believable; the magic is original; and the plot keeps my heart racing. I can’t get enough of this fabulous fantasy world, and I’ll be first in line for the final book of the trilogy!